Category Archives: Fusible Links

Gold just isn’t for fall leaves

BI-TORQ was recently specified and has received an order for several thermal shut-off valve assemblies to ship in early November. The valve packages range in size from ½” through 6” and are for a large gold mine in Central Asia.

The carbon steel ANSI 150#  assemblies are going to be installed in a diesel system to offer complete emergency shut-off protection in areas such as the main fuel storage tanks; inlets and outlets of generators; day tanks; the fire pump diesel tank; boiler fuel inlets; and fuel feeds to the mill and screening areas. This approach offers maximum protection with a product of this type.

If you take a look at the image below, you can see how the strategic placement of our thermal shut-off valves maximizes plant safety. This is accomplished 3 major ways. First, it allows for fuel lines to be shut down at critical junctures in the event of a fire. Our assemblies will stop flow into buildings or at branch points to keep flammable media from feeding a fire due to ruptured pipes, broken fittings or other leak points in the system. The thermal shut-off valves will also isolate tanks at their source, keeping the bulk of the flammable material safely in a tank. Additionally, they can also be used on top of tanks in a fail-open configuration as tank vacuum protection. Lastly, they can be used to shut down pumps when a localized fire breaks out. This is done by using the position feedback option to send a signal to the PLC.

FLP Placement - Diesel System

Whether your protection needs are simply for a small day tank in a commercial building or for a comprehensive fuel system at a industrial facility, you can count on our FM approved thermal shut-off valves.

Fusible Link Application – Lubricants

APPLICATION: EDM MACHINING CENTERS. (ELECTRICAL DISCHARGE MACHINING)

PROBLEM: A FIRE BROKE OUT AT A  PLANT WHERE EDM MACHINES ARE OPERATING. FOLLOWING AN INVESTIGATION BY FM GLOBAL, IT WAS DETERMINED THAT THE FLAMMABLE EDM LUBRICANT CONTRIBUTED TO THE FIRE AFTER THEIR LINES WERE COMPROMISED.

SKF combo2

SOLUTION: FM approved FLP series fusible link valves (also known as thermal shut-off valves) were mandated on all lubricant lines feeding the EDM machines. The plant currently has 4 EDM machines with several lines feeding various portions of the machines.

FOLLOW UP: The company’s safety department has decided to be more comprehensive with their fire safety requirements. They have determined that FLP series fusible link valves should be installed on all lubricant lines.

Our Fusible Link Assemblies are the Real Deal

As the leader in the fusible link (or thermal shut-off) valve market, BI-TORQ Valve Automation takes pride in knowing that every valve assembly we send out the door is built to our own exacting standards and meets all current product standards and approvals. We’d like to think that not only do we provide you with the best product of its type in the market, but also the most versatile as well. Let’s take a look at 5 reasons why.

Approvals

Some safety shutdown products on the market promote the fact that their links are FM approved. That’s great, but who wants a partially approved safety product? All our FM approved fusible link assemblies are approved as a whole unit (topworks) and designed to fit just about any quarter-turn fire safe valve. While Factory Mutual has not dictated that the complete package, valve included, be FM approved yet, we have taken the proactive step and had most of our FLP packages approved to include the valve.

Our complete Fusible Link Package (FLP) includes an API 607 certified valve not one “designed by” as other companies offer. We can provide a fire test certificate for the valve and its applicable size range per API 607 section 4.4 whereas a “designed to” valve might have fire tested at one time, but not necessarily in the size range or pressure class in accordance with API 607 section 4.4.

We treat these devices as engineered products not a commodity type product so every unit we ship has its own serial number for maximum traceability. We can also supply Certified Material Test Reports (CMTRs) and functional test reports upon request.

Size Range

The “Single Source for Valve Automation” model that we use for automated valve packages is very fitting here. While some of our competitors are limited to 2” and 3” valve sizes, we can provide the largest automatic shut-off  valve of its type in the industry, up to 21,000 inch pounds of torque. Whether insurance mandated or an internal safety driven requirement, our unparalleled size range makes outfitting a full facility easier from a cost, purchasing, training, and documentation standpoint.

Design

All of our fusible link assemblies have manual operation capability. Ball valves in the smaller LT & MT Series (typically ¼” through 2”) allow for manual operation even while armed with a simple turn of the lever. This saves having to install a manual isolation valve in the process line. HT & BT Series and all butterfly valve assemblies utilize a declutchable manual override with a handwheel to manually operate the valve.

Designing the assemblies to be field resettable was one of the main goals when this product was originally designed twenty some years ago. No long complicated process and no special tools are needed to replace the links with the valve in line. We even have Video IOMs to visually walk you through the process.

As a safety device for containing flammable or toxic media, the inline valve portion should be taken into consideration. With our assemblies designed around a quarter-turn valve and not a check valve type, you can operate our assemblies under pressure and use them as a “block valve”.  No need for periodic inspection to ensure functionality either. We do recommend annual link replacement as part of an overall plant maintenance program.

Customization

While the FLP Series is a full thermal shut-off device including our valve, we also offer the FL Series which is used to mount on top of customer-owned valves. This allows for API 607 fire safe valves on an Approved Manufacturer’s List (AML), particularly important in the Oil & Gas industry, to be mounted to our topworks.

Additional customization options include anti-vibration hardware (used in maritime applications), special coatings for tough environments, proximity switches for remote indication, and thermo-electric links for remote firing.

Resources

Our Product Configurator is a unique resource designed to help get our fusible link assemblies incorporated into a plant design or written specification. The Product Configurator offers the ability to search by different criteria such as valve type, size, link temp, or end connection.  Model specific sales drawings, sample specifications, and data sheets can also be downloaded here.  Additionally, with a simple online registration, you can download 2D line drawings or 3D models in various formats to integrate into a plant design.

Bottom line: Don’t get fooled by the competition