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Hutchinson enhances safety with new Zaltex® composite

Wed 16 May 2018

Hutchinson enhances safety with new Zaltex® composite

Total subsidiary Hutchinson, with 165 years of experience in developing and processing elastomers, is a world leader in antivibration, fluid management and precision sealing systems.

Hutchinson designs, develops, and produces customised materials and solutions to respond to specific customer’s needs. Hutchinson is present in 25 countries with revenue of €4.1Bn (US$4.8Bn) in 2017.

For the past 30 years, Hutchinson has actively participated in the evolution of the oil and gas industry by providing solutions using high-performance and innovative materials such as components and slabs for valves, seats, balls, subsea connectors for tension leg platform tendons, flexible joints for risers, bearing pads and tight liners for cryogenic liquid storage.

Hutchinson has also developed solutions with the latest technology and innovations dedicated to liquefied natural gas (LNG).

In this market, Hutchinson is supplying membrane tank seal solutions for LNG tankers with almost 180 vessels equipped. This membrane, called Triplex®, is also the secondary membrane on MarkIII technologies and has a perfect record of customer satisfaction since it was first delivered for use in 1992.

Owing to this proven experience in maritime transportation and storage of LNG, Hutchinson recognises the importance of safety in the cryogenic market, for both structures and human lives. Hutchinson concluded that current solutions to protect structures against LNG leaks were not efficient enough and has developed an alternative thermal material to current epoxy resins and thermal coating.

Hutchinson has worked closely with key players in the oil and gas industry, including Total, to develop new thermal materials.

Developing a brand new preventive product that could enhance safety in the whole LNG supply chain for chemistry equipment, gas drilling, gas production, gas storage or gas transportation, Hutchinson rose to the challenge.

Hutchinson joined the ISO committee and its product was the first to pass the ISO 20088 norm which is “Determination of the resistance to cryogenic spillage of insulation materials”.

The development lead to composite foam reinforced with mineral fibres: Zaltex® was born.

As a true thermal material, Zaltex brings preventive protection to cryogenic spills and passive fire protection with a better thermal conductivity compare to intumescent paints and epoxy resins, with a lower density and good insulation properties.

It is also the first CSP product on the market to have a dry installation which makes its assembly on sites possible under any weather conditions.

The Zaltex® patented product is easy to tune according to customer technical requirements. Zaltex thermal plates can be adjust with both density (from 150 kg/m3 up to 1,600 kg/m3) and number of layers.

Zaltex® is very stable at cryogenic temperatures, even after several thermal shocks, and at high temperatures. It can cover a -190°C/-310°F to 1000°C/1832°F range and has low shrinkage under cryogenic conditions.

In 2017, Zaltex® was recognised as the best solution to protect primary beams on MCHE modules (three trains) on the Yamal LNG production plant in Russia.

For this project, Hutchinson developed a quick installation concept and site assembly supervision contracts.

In sensitive environment within Seveso plants, Zaltex® can be used for various applications such as containment systems, structure protection, workers protection (anti-blast), internal barrier (insulating), pipes, centralisers and spacers.

Zaltex® is the solution to protect workers, facilities and the environment.

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