31 September 2008: Worcester-based Calder Ltd, manufacturer of high pressure pumping equipment, is using 316 stainless steel dampers supplied by Industrial Gas Springs to control the doors of two large skids housing the high pressure mono ethylene glycol pumps, destined for an offshore gas platform situated off the west coast of Norway.

The customer had very specific requirements for the opening/closing of the two sets of double doors situated on both sides of each skid: a maximum opening force of 13K and damped in the closing direction. The doors had to be able to open right back, flat to the sides of the container, but ‘click’ into place at a 90° angle.

“This application demanded the use of 316 stainless dampers and only Industrial Gas Springs was able to supply exactly what we needed,” explains Mark Wilks, Calder’s project manager of this high profile £3.4 million contract.” It is vitally important that the doors are controlled so as not to be caught by the wind and only 316 will do in the rugged environment of the North Sea.”

With each door measuring about 2m high x 1m wide x 120mm thick and weighing around
200 kg, a total of 20 gas springs are providing the precise control required for their safe and efficient opening/closing operations.

“This in an interesting application for our gas springs and we are delighted to provide Calder with this simple but effective solution,” comments IGS Field Sales Manager James Godbold. “The oil and gas industry is by no means a new application area for us. We have, for example, supplied dampers for doors to an oil refinery bunker – but this is the first time our 316 stainless have been used on an offshore gas production platform”

Each 304 tonne skid measures 6m long x 4m wide x 4m high and contains four high pressure pumps delivering pressure up to 580 bar (8410 psi) and driven by variable speed electric motors which are used to enhance the flow in the production pipeline by reducing hydrate formation. The skids will be installed in the lower level of the production platform where they will be stored until the remainder of the structure is completed. During that time, regular checks will be carried out on the equipment to ensure everything is in working order before the platform goes into full operation in about two years’ time.

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