Technical Condition Assessment and Remaining Useful Life Estimation of Choke Valves subject to Erosion

Technical Condition Assessment and Remaining Useful Life Estimation of Choke Valves subject to Erosion

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Abstract

Components that are part of an industrial process are normally degraded after some time in use. Predicting the future evolution of the degradation of components and estimating their remaining useful life are central elements for the implementation of optimal maintenance strategies. To achieve this, one must first identify the parameters providing a reliable indication of component performance or technical condition and then develop models for predicting their future trend. This paper presents an approach to a practical problem concerning the estimation of remaining useful life of choke valves located topside at wells on the Norwegian Continental Shelf. Choke valves suffer from erosion due to sand production in mature fields and eventually need to be replaced. One indicator of the erosion process is the increase of the difference between the theoretical and estimated valve flow coefficients. To achieve a reliable estimate of this parameter an empirical model-based approach is used accounting also for the historical well test measures collected during the choke valve life. A gamma process is then devised to model the temporal variability trend of the erosion. Finally, the choke valve remaining useful file is estimated based on an erosion threshold established by expert judgment.
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