Weir Group is looking to introduce innovative repair techniques which will in turn help reduce operation costs for its customers. Most operators demand that all critical valves are inspected and repaired every 3 years regardless of their condition. In order for us to carry out proper inspections of valves, it is required that we visit the customer’s site and disassemble each critical valve, a process that is both time consuming and costly for the customer as it interrupts their operations. Stripping the valve for inspection and rebuilding can take 12 hours, and an average of 400 valves would need to be inspected during an outage. Additionally, two men are required for the work, which equates to 24 man hours per valve before inspections and repairs are included.
Current techniques for measuring and assessing various aspects of valve wear are costly, time consuming, and lack the desired accuracy. Innovative improvements to existing techniques could improve the quality of our overhaul process, as well as the performance and reliability of the valves.
Many valves have a hard Stellite clad valve seat to increase wear resistance. To ensure optimum performance of the valve, the thickness of the Stellite cladding is measured manually across the cladded area while in-situ. Given the lack of space inside the valve body, the task requires a lot of time to be taken assessing each valve to ensure the thicknesses are measured correctly and accurately.
We are looking for a solution which would give a high accuracy thickness measurement of the Stellite cladding across the full valve seat face and would also ensure concentricity of the seat while in-situ.
This could involve using either imaging or condition-based monitoring techniques, though you might think of alternative approaches. Whatever you suggest should allow Weir to proactively repair only the valves that are in need of repair. In-situ wear monitoring technology or methods can help us significantly reduce the length of outage periods which could potentially save our customers millions of pounds. This would also enable us to work more efficiently as we can then focus our resources on other non-critical valves that often get overlooked and have more time to service other customers.
• Should use commercially available in-situ wear monitoring/condition-based monitoring technology
• Must be cost-effective and demonstrate proven time-saving results for customers
• Must be integrated easily with our in-situ valve inspection processes
The challenge can be concisely summarised as: how might Weir group develop new approaches to understand the condition of our critical valves?
Since we might be looking to develop your solution further, and this may require further contact with you, we are looking for:
1. A concise abstract/summary of the proposed solution that briefly describes the technical approach.
2. All required information in order to provide us with appropriate contact information for your responses.
(Please note that only non-confidential information can be accepted. By submitting a response you represent that the response does not contain and will not be deemed to contain any confidential information of any kind whatsoever. By submitting a response, you acknowledge that the Weir Group may select or reject a response or any portion thereof.)
Attractive solutions will potentially be considered for partnership, supplier agreement, and/or joint development opportunities.
Based on a 1-10 scale (1 is not important - 10 is critical)