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Trelleborg brings advanced elastomer to market

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Oilfield Technology,

An advanced elastomer developed by Trelleborg Sealing Solutions, which is tipped to revolutionise the industry, is now available to the market.

The XploR™ V9T82 fluoroelastomer (FKM) combines excellent chemical and thermal properties, with outstanding low temperature capability.

It exhibits superior high pressure sealing performance in Rapid Gas Decompression (RGD) situations and has met the ISO 23936 standard as well as revision three of NORSOK M-710, the world leader in engineered polymer solutions has announced.

David Brown, Global Lead Group Director Oil and Gas, said: “We are confident the XploR V9T82 is going to revolutionise the oil and gas industry. We’ve already had a huge amount of interest because it has been designed to stand up to Rapid Gas Decompression and the fact it can still perform at -4°F/-20°C whilst under 15 000 psi/100 MPa is convention defying.

“We believe that once again, Trelleborg Sealing Solutions has demonstrated our commitment to pushing the barriers of science, while continuing to provide more advanced and sophisticated sealing solutions for the industry.”

XploR is available in all standard international O-Ring sizes and cross-sections along with custom-engineered solutions and specially designed seal profiles.

Oil operators contending with extreme low temperatures, such as in the North Sea or around Canada and Alaska, now have the opportunity to reduce operator costs without the need to use higher cost solutions and pre-heated equipment.

Low temperature sealing is becoming more common in oil and gas applications but standard Hydrogenated Nitrile Butadiene Rubber (HNBR) and FKM materials offer limited sealing capability below freezing when operated at high pressures.

When an elastomer reaches its glass transition temperature (Tg) point its properties change from being elastic and pliable to becoming solid and brittle.

As a result the elastomer is ineffective as a sealing solution and can be damaged easily.

The Tg point of an elastomer is increased under pressure. In general, the Tg value rises by approximately +2°F/+1°C for every 750 psi/5 MPa increase in pressure applied. For example, a seal material with a Tg rating of -4°F/-20°C at atmosphere will have a Tg rating of just +32°F/0°C at 15 000 psi/100 MPa.

The XploR V9T82 operates from -48°C to +200°C/-54°F to +392°F with short excursions to 210°C/+410°F. These low Tg values allow the materials to remain elastic under pressure at much lower temperatures than standard grades.

In addition to wellhead applications that may be subject to high operating pressures at low temperatures, the XploR V9T82 may also be ideal for drilling and intervention equipment that is stored in sub-zero conditions before being deployed into high pressure scenarios.

Adapted from a press release by David Bizley

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