pilot plant, fabrication, Continental Technologies, petroleum, refining industries, modular contruction

Safety Philosophy

Each Continental Technologies employee formerly worked for more than a decade at Conoco and DuPont, two companies widely known for safety excellence with employees as well as contractors. The safety principles and practices are embedded in our company. The company has never had a lost workday case or even a recordable incident related to one of its employees or its contractors.

All of our staff has had process safety management training and have had several specialized training classes through DuPont – including Safety Training for Supervisors. Three of our Senior Technical Specialists helped set up and lead the behavior based safety program, “BE SAFE” at Conoco R&D. Our staff has participated on many different types and levels of safety reviews, from a simple lab scale safety review to a full PSSR. Continental Technologies incorporates this into every project.

Continental Technologies has a perfect safety record. Neither we nor any of our subcontractors have had a lost workday case or even a recordable incident to one of its employees or its contractors.

We have designed and built pilot plants operating with hazardous gases and under extreme conditions. Furthermore, we have operated such equipment for long periods and acquired practical understanding of the potential hazards associated with its use. Because of our deep experience in pilot plant fabrication and operation (from our experience at Conoco and ConocoPhillips) we understand the regulations and safety and apply these high standards to everything we do.

That knowledge, along with training by organizations that literally set the standard for safety best practices, is the foundation of our Safety Philosophy. From design to delivery, each module is carefully evaluated for safety and functionality. Potential operating hazards are considered during the design, construction and commissioning phases of a project. Only proven equipment and control techniques are used in Continental Technologies’ process equipment. Pressure vessels are designed and fabricated in accordance with ASME Section VIII, and are hydrostatically tested at the vessel fabrication shop. Piping and tubing is designed and fabricated in accordance with ANSI B31.3. In addition, Continental Technologies will work with you to understand and meet the safety regulations specific to your facility, industry and application.

Typical safety features included into a design to ensure safe operation are:

  • After the unit has been assembled, it undergoes a hydrostatic or pneumatic pressure test, depending on what is appropriate for the type of pilot plant.

  • Critical temperature control loops and high temperature heat trace circuits have two separate thermocouples, one for controlling and one to act as temperature interlock.

  • The "fail-safe" philosophy: this has been incorporated into the design of the pilot plant.  In the event of power failure or loss of instrument air, each remote air operated valve, electrical solenoid valve, and pneumatic control valve, will fail into its "safe" position.

  • Three levels of safety: these are employed for critical parameters (e.g. temperature, pressure).  The first level consists of high and low alarms on computer monitored transmitters and control loops, which are user configurable.  A second level of high-high and low-low alarms are predominantly determined by the equipment safety limitations and are configured by Continental Technologies.  Individual alarm actions are also preprogrammed to cause shutdown of a particular component (for example gas feed, pump, and heater) or of the entire system if an alarm value is exceeded. These steps automatically return the system to a safe condition. In addition to the two levels of digital alarm actions, a third level consisting of independent safety switches or mechanical backups (pressure relief devices, fusible links on instrument air supplies) are provided.

  • Emergency Shutdown stop switch: Automatically brings the system to a safe mode.

  • Operator training and documentation includes instruction on safe operation and emergency procedures.

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