Alcoa Alumina Refinery – Custom Pinch Valve for Pigging Station
In 2021, the mechanical engineer at Alcoa Pinjarra’s alumina refinery was trying to solve a long-standing issue with valves seizing on the lime circuit's pigging station. This was making it difficult for the technicians open and close the valves and clean the lines.
We recommended they trial pinch valves. The full port design of pinch valves allows the pig to travel through the valve. Plus, the elastomer wear-resistant sleeve is the only part of the valve that contacts the fluid. This reduces the risk of the seizing and reduces operating fatigue.
This was a big win for the Pinjarra team. The valve has lasted twice as long as its predecessors, with plans underway to replace all the valves on the line with pinch valves.
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