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LEVERKUSEN - Apart from process control systems and sensors, control valves play an important role in process automation.
Control valves figure among the workhorses in process automation and influence the flow of media to control process variables, such as pressure, temperature, flow rate and filling level.
In the beginning, valves were mere mechanical devices operated by hand. Thanks to constantly enhanced and optimized mechanical components and the use of smart positioners, control valves nowadays balance rugged mechanics and intelligent functions.
NAMUR will dedicate this year's 75thAnnual General Meeting to the wide topic of control valves. The meeting will take place at Bad Neuenahr, Germany on 8 and 9 November 2012 and cover a wide range of topics, starting with the beginnings of the simple, purely mechanical valves and culminating in the complex, smart control valves of our days, which have the potential of fulfilling even more process-related tasks in the future.
With over 100 years of experience and expertise in control valve engineering, the SAMSON GROUP with its worldwide market presence is the ideal partner for this year’s annual meeting.
Dr. Jörg Kiesbauer, member of the Executive Board of SAMSON AG responsible for research and development, will hold a keynote speech on the development that control valves have undergone over the years. Today, a control valve is an assembly consisting of a valve, mostly a pneumatic actuator and accessories, such as a positioner or solenoid valve. These units are combined to achieve a modular design, yet with a complex configuration of functions, which – through thorough sizing and the careful selection of components – can provide solutions for nearly all requirements.
The use of digital positioners considerably enhanced the functions of control valves, primarily by adding diagnostic features. These diagnostics have advanced significantly and turned the control valves into highly complex mechatronic assemblies tailored to the task at hand.
Initially, the developments in failure diagnostics for control valves were centered around valves used in throttling service. Now, a trend towards failure diagnostics in automated on/off valves has become visible as well. A major development in this field is partial stroke testing on emergency shutdown valves, where the positioner mainly functions as a diagnostic unit in addition to the solenoid valve that serves as the actual control unit for emergency shutdown.
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