Chesterfield Special Cylinders Ltd
High pressure gas containment specialists
When Chesterfield Special Cylinders’ (CSC) Integrity Team launched its in situ inspection and testing regime, DNV GL welcomed it as “a major step forward…saves time and money…the future of testing seamless gas tubes”. This came as no surprise to the oil, gas and maritime majors that had already benefitted from the team’s services.
CSC’s seamless, high pressure gas cylinders of up to 3000 litres – and working pressures of up to 600 bar – are renowned for being installed on semi-submersible rigs, drill ships and DSVs across the globe. In recent years, its new asset integrity management team has also built a worldwide reputation for providing the most accomplished inspection and testing service in the industry.
The team is now also pioneering the upcoming European Standard for the inspection and testing of high pressure tubes which cannot be removed for reasons of downtime or cost. This ensures the same high standards are applied to cylinders inspected and tested where they were installed as to those that can be removed.
Standardising best practice, cutting budgets
Experts hail the new standard as engendering best practice, reducing downtime and delivering cost efficiencies.
“Like BS 8562 before it, this European Standard will be a non-destructive examination and testing regime that saves significant budgets and drastically cuts downtime because the tubes can be fully inspected and tested wherever they are installed,” comments CSC’s director of integrity management Stephen Butler.
Asset integrity management starts with design
There has been a long-standing concern over tubes whose removal is impractical. A lack of detailed examination and re-test criteria can lead to insufficient or unsuitable written schemes of work, which can create safety issues.
All oil, gas, storage and maritime companies working within EU member states can now adopt this standard and be assured that their safety-critical gas installations are receiving the inspection and testing they require to maintain optimum operating and safety levels.
“The CSC integrity team has been tasked with rolling out the new standard across Europe and then globally,” says Stephen Butler. “While the service delivers major benefits in cost and downtime reduction, we also believe that a greater concentration on end use and positioning during the design and manufacturing stages can help customers achieve better asset management from the outset.
“Our design teams in England and Germany work with customers to optimise the entire installation, to support the new standard in anticipation of a long-term maintenance, servicing, testing and repair regime.”
CSC’s Integrity Management service is the most comprehensive high pressure tube inspection and testing regime worldwide, from the industry’s most experienced team.
The service is being used by:
- Owners and operators
- Classification bodies
- Industry bodies
In situ and factory-based services include:
- Periodic inspection and testing
- Visual examination
- Acoustic emission (AE) testing
- Ultrasonic examination
- Remote inspection
- Hydraulic test
- Life extension
- Failure investigation
- Pre-design/retrospective optimisation
- Written scheme assessments
- Condition monitoring
- Replacement cylinders
- Prototype testing
The Asset Management service is being deployed from Kazakhstan to the Congo, saving $millions of dollars for operators needing to comply with global gas vessel classification practices.
This new service directly benefits the offshore support sector by:
- Budget-saving – saves considerable budgets because the only alternative to testing to the recommended standard is removing them through a hole in the hull or deck. This would be expensive, but the downtime it would require would be hugely prohibitive.
- Highest industry-wide safety standards – operators can be confident they have taken every measure possible to ensure the high pressure gas cylinders on their vessels pass the most rigorous test regime.
- Optimal operating standards – after in situ testing and re-certification, the safety-critical gas cylinders will be working to the optimum standards.