17 April 2013

ScanTech Offshore shortlisted for safety award for innovative PyroSentry™ product

The International Association of Drilling Contractors (IADC) has shortlisted ScanTech Offshore in its North Sea Chapter Safety Awards.

The shortlist is for ScanTech Offshore's  groundbreaking safety solution, PyroSentry, which provides increased fire detection and instant suppression for methanol supplies at risk of combustion offshore.

PyroSentry is an innovative, new product that has been specifically designed for chemical bunding and storage areas with special consideration towards methanol bunding on-board offshore installations, where many rig operators use the alcohol to keep flow lines from the oil or gas wellhead clear.

Methanol (CH3OH) is highly effective in preserving flow assurance but brings its own unique hazards to the offshore environment. It is a clear, colourless liquid with the appearance of water and no discernible odour in low concentrations but it is extremely flammable and releases vapours at or below ambient temperatures. It burns in air with a flame that gives off very little visible light and, as such, it can be difficult to detect a fire or to estimate its extent in daylight. Special fire protection measures are therefore crucial in ensuring the fire-safety of offshore methanol installations.

Robbie Garden, business development manager at ScanTech Offshore who shaped the PyroSentry product, explains:

“The PyroSentry mechanism uses specialist tubing that, if burnt through, automatically triggers alcohol-resistant aqueous film-forming (AR AFFF) foam so that any fire is suppressed within seconds of starting. In trials, the long lasting foam fully covered the test area and remained in this state for over 24 hours”.

The groundbreaking PyroSentry system can be installed and running in as little as six hours. It is bunded to avoid any leakage of methanol to the rig structure, provides both audible and visual alarms and is a 100 percent independent system. In addition to the base system, AR AFFF equipped fire-fighting trolley units can also be supplied as a secondary protection measure, together with a thermal imaging camera to support methanol fire assessment and safety.

Robbie Garden continues:

“The PyroSentry product is already proving of interest to numerous offshore operators including Total, Chevron, ENI and Exxon Mobil. We are thrilled to have been shortlisted in the IADC North Sea Chapter Annual Safety Awards as we believe we have created a leading edge solution for increasing safety on offshore rigs.”

New initiatives and achievements will be recognised by the IADC North Sea Chapter with the winners being announced at the Annual Safety Awards, which this year are being held on Friday 10 May 2013 at the Ardoe House Hotel in Aberdeen.