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Orica uses Emerson digital valve controller for harsh liquid ammonia application

Orica Mining Services is currently using Emerson Process Management’s new DVC6200 Series digital valve controller at its Kooragang site for use in a liquid ammonia application.

Orica Mining Services is currently using Emerson Process Management’s new DVC6200 Series digital valve controller at its Kooragang site for use in a liquid ammonia application.

The DVC6200 Series digital valve controller is part of Emerson’s FIELDVUE instrument product line and features linkage-less, non-contact feedback technology.

The FIELDVUE DVC6200 instrument was designed for applications that experience high levels of vibration, corrosion, or material entrapment. The linkage-less, non-contact feedback technology improves reliability by eliminating linkage wear, Emerson claims.

The FIELDVUE DVC6200 instrument has undergone electro-magnetic compatibility (EMC) testing to meet IEC standards and will ship with the CE mark. It is available with either the HART or FOUNDATION fieldbus communication protocol.

According to Emerson, Orica Mining Services is currently using the new device in its Kooragang Island facility in New South Wales.

Orica is a supplier of commercial explosives and blasting systems for the mining and construction industries, and its facility at Kooragang Island is the second-largest in the world producing ammonium nitrate.

Emerson says that the Kooragang site has standardised on Fisher valves with FIELDVUE instruments. The plant also uses Emerson's 375 Field Communicator and AMS Device Manager with ValveLink SNAP-ON application software as part of its calibration, valve-monitoring, and predictive maintenance system.

Orica personnel worked with the local Emerson office to improve the performance of a Fisher valve in liquid ammonia service. According to Emerson, the valve's high-cycle service conditions and the ammonia atmosphere in which it operates represent one of the most severe environments in any process plant.

Emerson engineers recommended the new FIELDVUE DVC6200 instrument with linkage-less, non-contact feedback technology for this harsh application.

Using basic hand tools, Orica’s Instrument Technician Richard Fielding installed the new FIELDVUE DVC6200 instrument on an ammonia-service valve.

“This device was easy to install, program, and set up,” he said. “It has been operating trouble-free and has enabled this critical valve to provide accurate and repeatable response throughout its range of travel.”

Fielding said he appreciates Emerson’s continued investment in technology and product enhancements. “The reliability of the FIELDVUE DVC6200 instrument, plus its on-line monitoring capabilities, enables our operators to avoid manual checks and valve repairs in areas filled with ammonia vapours,” he said.

Emerson claims that, since installing the device, Orica has not experienced any production losses due to valve failures. “This single instrument application has saved us thousands of dollars,” Fielding said.

Orica plans to order 30 Fisher valves with FIELDVUE DVC6200 instruments for an upgrade at its Kooragang ammonia plant, according to Emerson.

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