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Valve actuator recently updated

25 June 2007

Flowserve Corporation, a global provider of fluid motion and control products and services, has further developed enhancements to the Flowserve Limitorque MX valve actuator. Introduced to the flow control marketplace in 1997, this product has now undergone innovative improvement.

The newest Limitorque MX has been re-designed to provide users with a longer operational life in even the most extreme applications. Available for use on a wider variety and size of 360°, multi-turn valves than ever before, the globally certified device meets most world utilisation standards.

Improvements to the MX include a patented absolute encoder with increased span, improved diagnostics capability, and built-in self-test (BIST). The Limitorque MX is also double-sealed, allowing for containment of any leakage within the terminal compartment.

"The latest improvements make the Limitorque MX one of the safest, most predictable and most reliable valve actuators in the world," said Earnie Carey, Jr., product manager for Flowserve Limitorque. "These enhancements improve the speed, accuracy and simplicity of actuator operation in virtually any environment."

One of the operational advancements in the Limitorque MX has been enhancement to the special absolute encoder. The "smart" and flexible encoder configuration helps simplify valve automation through configuration/setup, normal operations, diagnostics, and troubleshooting.

Another modification to the newest encoder model is that the drive sleeve turns have increased. While the initial MX model had a span of 1,340, the Limitorque MX allows for a span of over 10,000 turn options.

The Limitorque MX has optional digital components and can operate on a a number of networks with different protocols, which helps it more easily identify rapid component failure and reduce downtime. Diagnostic data is better retained, which is an important credential in processor meantime between failure analysis.

The Frequency Domain Analysis (FDA) features of the unit capture torque, position and speed values at regular time intervals. While monitoring these events, the resulting data set is automatically calculated to pinpoint the failure or failed components. Failed or failing components can thus be easily targeted, and the data monitored, in any type of use in order to determine and report faults. The MX can retain this positioning without the need for an auxiliary power backup.

Also featured are the built-in, self-tests (BIST) of the Limitorque MX. The BIST feature is designed into a controls platform that verifies and validates the integrity of its components; a design that aids companies in meeting the Safety Integrity Level (SIL) requirements of IEC 61508.

A series of parallel optical device transmitters are utilised in the absolute encoder of the Limitorque MX in order to supply redundant support. This alteration now permits a fault tolerance of up to 50% before the position is incorrectly reported, allowing the device to continue to reliably function until a number of faults have been accumulated.

The Limitorque MX has a patented LimiGardT circuit protection technology and Hall-effect devices to help eliminate potentially troublesome reed switches. The enhanced MX improves on these features, adding new functionality for greater versatility.

This includes the addition of DeviceNet to its communication options to complement Modbus, Foundation Fieldbus H1, Profibus DP_V1, and Profibus PA. MX DeviceNet offers the user bit-strobe I/O messaging and a host of other benefits.

Limitorque MX actuators are available for torques up to 1700 ft-lb (2307 N m) and thrust ratings up to 75,000 lb (333 kN). The units are powder coated in a polyester resin to protect all components in harsh environments.

Further upgrades to the MX include a graphical dot matrix display with improved visibility. The 32-character LCD screen control panel supports all MX languages and diagnostic graphs for data analysis and collection. Display orientation can now be configured to rotate 180°.


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