Agency Approvals Float Oil Rig Fast


A new off-shore drilling rig was sitting in port waiting for a combination water injection/oil separation system before it could be towed out to the drilling site. Every day that passed was costing the customer tens of thousands of dollars. This system is used in two phases; first to heat salt water for injecting into the well to improve the oil's pumpability, and, second, to assist in the water/crude oil separation process. A big obstacle was the required CSA approval on the heaters and control panels. Normally this process can take up to six months.


Watlow was able to get the American Bureau of Shipping (ABS) to witness the heater hydro-testing and get a special exemption. This dramatically shortened the approval process down to three weeks. The entire assembly of eight, 18-inch, Class 600 flange heaters with a total power of 3400 kW, plus 13 NEMA 7 explosion-resistant control panels, was shipped five and one half weeks following design approval?a full week ahead of the customer's deadline.