Emergency Shutdown Systems (ESD) are a fundamental part of the safety systems associated with oil and gas, utility and other hazardous processes. Associated with these systems are specific valves which are used to isolate and blowdown the processes. These are referred to as Shutdown (SDV) and Blowdown (BDV) Valves respectively. Under emergency situations it is critical that these valves operate correctly. Thus the engineering of the valves and their associated actuators is paramount in ensuring plant safety. They must meet the Fire Safe and Reliability criteria determined by IEC16508 and IEC16511. This Professional Certificate of Competency (PCC) covers the requirements in detail.

In addition, the course addresses Severe Service Valves and Wellhead Choke Valves. Severe Service Valves are required where the process can cause damage to conventional valves through erosion, high noise, cavitation, high vibration, possible mechanical damage to the valve trim, other components and the process equipment around the valve. These valves are generally specialist designs that overcome these issues by "smart" design.


  • Gain an understanding of SDV and BDV criticality in the context of a safety system, valve inherent reliability, availability requirements and operational constraints
  • Differentiate between types of SDV, BDV and severe service / choke valve designs
  • Understand valve design codes including ISO 1431, API 6D, ISO 17292
  • Learn about material selection for SDV, BDV and severe service / choke valves body and trim including NACE requirements
  • Study seat leakage classifications and standards (ANSI, IEC, ISO, BS)
  • Limit and control fugitive emissions and gland packing
  • Learn about the fire safety code, requirements and fire safe design
  • Understand the torque required, break, run and shear
  • Learn about specification of SDV, BDV and severe service / choke valves, including preparing a typical Datasheet for an actuated ball valve
  • Identify severe service applications and have an appreciation for the methods of tackling the problems associated with such applications
  • Differentiate the types of valve actuators; pneumatic spring return, hydraulic spring return, electric spring return
  • Understand size actuators and torque requirements
  • Learn about SDV/BDV accessory selection including position switches, external indication and solenoids
  • Know the use of smart positioners
  • Understand the need for closed loop hookups and the selection of instrument tubing
  • Learn about valve failure to operate on demand
  • Learn how to order valves, the supplier document schedule and the documentation list required

The only 2015 intake starts September 28.

There are limited places available to ensure a superior learning experience for our students.

Course Outline

MODULE 1: Introduction

  • Basic concepts of SDV/BDV valves and their use as part of an Emergency Shutdown System
  • The requirements of safety standards applicable to SDV/BDV valves – IEC16508 / IEC16511
  • SIL levels, failure rates, MTBF, hardware fault tolerance, avoiding systematic failures, failure to operate on demand, redundancy
  • Reliability requirements of SDV/BDV valves
  • Valve cycle times
  • Applicable codes and regulations
  • Definitions and terminology

MODULE 2: Types of SDV/BDV Valves

  • Full bore ball valve
  • Reduced bore valve – Sizing considerations apply
  • Butterfly valve
  • Control valves (special considerations apply)
  • Linear versus rotary
  • Valve sizing considerations – liquid and gas
  • Maximum noise calculations
  • Material selection – Body, trim, seals, O-Rings, gaskets,
  • Valve end connection options – Flanged/Clamplock
  • Valve trim
  • Leak rates – Maximum allowable seat leakage, maximum allowable backseat leakage
  • Fire safe valves, standards, codes and tests

MODULE 3: Actuators

  • Types of actuators – Pneumatic /Hydraulic/Electric/Spring Return/Dual Action/ Scotch Yoke
  • Selection – Prolonged position (long stand still) break torque requirement
  • Sizing
  • Actuator trim
  • Torque requirements for blowdown valves – Spring start to open torque, opening torque, running torque, start to close (air start torque), reseat torque (end of close stroke)
  • Torque requirements for shutdown valves – Spring start to close torque, closing torque, running torque, start to open (air start torque), reseat torque (end of open stroke)
  • Stem shear torque
  • Minimising size on offshore applications – Dual acting hydraulic
  • Maximum operating pressure and maximum allowable working pressure
  • Actuator dimension limitations
  • Pneumatic hookups – Closed loop breathing systems
  • Hydraulic systems for remote operation of SDV/BDV valves
  • Fire safe actuators and fire blankets
  • Accumulators

MODULE 4: Specification, Selection, Procurement and Factory Witness Testing (FWT) of SDV/BDV Valves

  • Preparation of a detailed technical specification
  • Datasheets for SDV/BDV
  • Accessories for SDV / BDV – Solenoid valves, redundant solenoid valves, exhaust valves, smart positioners, position switches and indicators
  • Important details for purchase orders – Handling and transportation, spare requirements, quality assurance requirements, certification of materials, supplier documentation requirements, instructions to suppliers, weight control (offshore)
  • Protective coating specification
  • “As Built” updates to documentation
  • Testing – Performance testing, leak test, verification of fire safe testing, inspector competency

MODULE 5: Commissioning, Maintenance and Operational Performance Testing of SDV/BDV Valves

  • Commissioning of SDV/BDV valves – Important considerations during pressure testing and flushing, construction waste and sea water issues.
  • Failure to operate on demand - Jerky operation, slow operation, failure to fully open or close, valve leakage
  • Operational performance testing of SDV/BDV valves - Proof testing periods, reliability centred maintenance techniques, partial stroke testing
  • The use of “Smart Positioners” to verify valve status
  • Maintenance of SDV/BDV Valves – Preparation of a standard for factory overhaul of SDV/BDV valves to return valve and actuator to “as new” specification

MODULE 6: Riser Emergency Shutdown Valves (RESDV)

  • Specific requirements and description of  Riser Emergency Shutdown Valves (RESDV), the associated systems and parts – These valves are high criticality devices – Specific consideration of RESDV location
  • Ensuring the valve design assures the ability of valve to close on demand independently of the length of time the valve has been in service
  • Regulatory requirements
  • Reopening criteria – “Locked closed” until authorised via independent master control panel
  • Achieving maximum reliability
  • Ensuring review of common mode failure points – failure modes effects and criticality analysis
  • RESDV valve selection - Engineering to ensure maximum reliability, availability and durability
  • Actuator requirements – Spring return, closing thrust requirement
  • Valve closure rate
  • Protection for Fire, explosion and impact, active and passive fire protection, RESDV fire safe time period, fire protection failure criteria specific engineering requirements
  • Ensuring fail safe operation – Protection of control lines, redundancy of control lines
  • Factory witness testing – Full pressure and leakage test, competency of inspecting test verification engineer
  • Specific considerations for large valves requiring double acting hydraulic actuators
  • Testing objectives - Partial and full closure tests, leakage test, failure to operate on demand or within required specification actions
  • Inspection and testing of RESDV in operation; partial stroke testing considerations, test record, proof testing time periods, inspection procedures
  • Maintenance considerations
  • Commissioning considerations

MODULE 7: High Integrity Protection Systems (HIPPS)

  • Specific requirements and description of HIPPS
  • Standards and regulations pertaining to HIPPS, IEC16508/IEC16511
  • The advantages of using HIPPS – Lower pressure rating of headers, flare system and piping
  • The disadvantages of HIPPS
  • HIPPS device integrity and architecture
  • Mechanical and electric HIPPS
  • Redundancy of devices
  • Safety Integrity Levels (SIL) of HIPPS – Determining the required SIL level, verification of SIL with Markov models, fault tree analysis and other methods
  • HIPPS justification
  • Design of HIPPS in accordance with IEC16511 and justification associated with API521
  • HIPPS hazard analysis - “What-if”  analysis; “What-if”/checklist analysis; Hazard and Operability study (HAZOP); Failure Modes, Effects, and Criticality Analysis (FMECA); Fault Tree Analysis (FTA), or Event Tree Analysis (ETA)
  • Preparation of a HIPPS specification and datasheet
  • Subsea HIPPS – API RP 17O recommended practice for subsea High Integrity Pressure Protection System (HIPPS)
  • Common cause failures study
  • The need for a safety requirement specification
  • Maintenance diagnostics and smart positioners
  • Maintenance of HIPPS
  • Testing frequencies
  • Ongoing change management of documentation, design, operation, maintenance, and testing to ensure compliance with regulations and standards
  • Competency of Personnel working on HIPPS

MODULE 8: Severe Service Control Valves

  • Understanding and recognising the need for a severe service control valve
  • Identifying root causes for problems and selecting the correct technology to rectify
  • Severe service control valve applications
  • Severe service valve designs
  • Sizing severe service valves
  • Specifying control valves for severe service applications
  • Preparation of a severe service control valve specification and datasheet
  • Commissioning and maintaining severe service control valves
  • Specific hookups for severe service control valve applications
  • Accessories for severe service control valve

MODULE 9: Wellhead Choke Valves

  • Oil and gas surface and subsurface wellhead choke valves
  • Actuators – Stepping and linear
  • Preparation of a typical choke valve design specification and datasheet – Process data / Production profile / Service conditions / Wellstream conditions / Mechanical requirements
  • Design requirements – Standards, valve body, trim, actuator, positioner, accessories
  • Test and certification requirements
  • Calculations and sizing
  • Noise calculations and standards
  • Smart positioner option
  • Choke valve orientation and sizes
  • Provision for marine conditions
  • Choke valve maintenance and inspection – Criticality of regular inspection, FMECA
  • Use of predictive instrumentation to assess erosion / corrosion, sand and erosion monitoring
  • Proof testing and maintenance scheduling
  • Common choke valve problems and solutions – Corrosion, erosion, cavitation, leaking
  • Subsea choke valves


NB: The course description of all EIT "Certificate" courses has been changed to "Professional Certificate of Competency". Some course brochures are not yet updated. The actual certificate received by successful students will include the new title.


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