Conbit perform load test for complex flare-tip replacement project

A dynamic load-test was conducted at the Conbit site in Eindhoven and witnessed by the clients of the upcoming flare-tip replacement project in Kazakhstan.

The load test involved holding the test weight for 15 minutes, then holding the maximum position for 15 minutes so the test lift could be analysed at every step. The test weight during the lift was set at 125% of the heaviest flare tip.

The project will involve the replacement of two flare tips, weighing 1,300kg and 2,000kg, and the removal of the davit. Works will be executed at the top of the stack 100m high. The flares will be lifted using the gantry, and lowered to the ground level using a winch line.

“One of our main challenges on this project is the limited strength of the flare structure,” explained Dries van Mierlo, Project Manager.

“As the structure has limited strength, we looked at how we could maximise and incorporate our structural engineering to determine where the strong points will be. As the client required the equipment on site in March to be ready in the event of an emergency shutdown, we needed to perform the load test ahead of schedule so we were in the best position to quickly mobilise the equipment.”

The scheduled shutdown is expected to take place in May 2019 and, as the shutdown period will only be four days, Conbit needed to be confident that the works could be performed within the limited time period. A specialist crew will be deployed that are rope-access certified.

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