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APC creates in-house test centre

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LNG Industry,

Alpha Process Controls (APC), a member of the GT Group, has created an in-house test centre to support the manufacture and commissioning of its family of marine emergency release couplings for LNG transfer. 

The test facility utilises a pressurised water system, which is calibrated to supply water at a comparable rate to LNG during ship-to-ship transfer, to ensure couplings deliver optimum performance and meet stringent industry standards.

In addition to testing new couplings, the centre, which represents a £1 million investment by the company, can also manage the overhaul, retesting and re-commissioning of units that have already been in operation around the globe. 

APC’s Marine ERC Breakaway Coupling System, which is available in sizes from 4 to 10 in. dia., is part of a larger family of couplings developed by the company. 

Alongside its experience of delivering solutions for onshore vehicle-based transfer of LNG, APC has undertaken extensive research and development to create cost-effective LNG safety couplings for the marine industry.

In the case of an emergency situation such as two vessels drifting apart, the system’s control mechanism activates, even when LNG is in the full flow of transfer, closing down internal valves at a controlled rate to reduce the effects of pressure spikes.

The system, which also utilises hose saddles developed by APC to maintain minimum hose bend radius during transfer operations, is also applicable to LNG bunkering and LNG bulk breaking.

John Lamb, Managing Director of APC, said: “The completion of the test centre is a core element of delivering our revolutionary LNG transfer systems to the energy industry.   

“Alpha is in the minority of coupling manufacturers able to provide these in-house test facilities, which, therefore, provides our customers with a more comprehensive and cost-effective service.  Our test centre also provides an option for customers to maintain a consistent servicing programme for the lifespan of their coupling systems through our back to base overhaul programme.”

Adapted from press release by

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