Eaton Supports Offshore Oil Exploration and Production with Synflex High-Performance Hose Solutions


EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn ... Diversified industrial manufacturer Eaton Corporation announced that it offers a variety of advanced Synflex® hose products to support offshore oil exploration and production around the world. Included in the newly expanded Synflex product line are sophisticated Blow-Out-Prevention Bundles, High-Crush-Resistant (HCR) and a new line of Control Umbilicals to complement Synflex's selection of flying leads and other subsea hose products.

"With the addition of Control Umbilical Bundles and the new 1 inch and 1/2-inch diameter HCR hose, we are solidly positioned to support offshore production customers operating at depths of 10,000 feet and deeper" explained Michael Rauh, senior product manager, Eaton's Hydraulics Operations. "In fact," Rauh noted, "a major producer purchased our entire initial run of the new 7,500 psi 1/2-inch diameter HCR hose for use in their West African production operation before we had even finished manufacturing it."

"These products complement our Blow-Out-Prevention bundles which are used during the exploration phase of a project to protect personnel and equipment during the drilling operation," Rauh said. "Eaton is able to support offshore customers throughout the entire life cycle of a project, from initial exploration to final production."

BOP Hose "Bundles" consist of a central hose or hot line surrounded by a "bundle" of smaller hoses. In a typical Blow-Out-Prevention application, the central tube supplies the high-pressure hydraulic fluid to operate valves located on the seafloor-mounted "Blow-Out Prevention (BOP) Stack." The BOP Stack contains hydraulically powered rams that can be closed rapidly to prevent the escape of high-pressure gas if the drill string encounters a gas pocket while drilling. The smaller hoses surrounding the central hose are used to transmit hydraulic control signals to and from the drilling platform and BOP Stack.

"Blow-Out prevention is a major safety issue," Rauh said. "Imagine an offshore rig being suddenly engulfed by a huge bubble of highly-flammable gas and you'll get some idea of how dangerous a Blow-Out can be. The American Petroleum Institute has very strict response requirements for the valves and controls used in BOP systems, and our bundles help customers protect both the lives of drilling crews, and their expensive drilling platforms."

Synflex' new Umbilical Bundles leverage the technology used in BOP bundles to support subsea production and work over operations. The umbilical contains high-pressure hoses and electrical wires that transmit control signals to seafloor equipment used to control the flow of oil from multiple wells, and to support Intervention Work Over Control (IWOC) operations which can inject methanol and other chemicals into the oil stream to control paraffin and other contaminants.

"The new offshore frontier is in water deeper than the current 6,500 foot limit," he noted. "Our customers are moving aggressively into deeper water, and we are ready to respond with products able to operate safely and reliably at 10,000 feet and beyond."
Eaton's Hydraulics Operations is a business segment of Eaton's Fluid Power Group. The business is a worldwide leader in the design, manufacture and marketing of a comprehensive line of reliable, high-efficiency hydraulic systems and components for use in mobile and industrial applications. Mobile and industrial markets include agriculture, construction, mining, forestry, utility, material handling, earthmoving, truck and bus, machine tools, molding, primary metals, automotive, power generation, port machinery and entertainment. Eaton's Hydraulics Operations provides customer-driven solutions under brand names such as Aeroquip®, Boston®, Char-Lynn®, Eaton®, Hydro-Line®, Vickers(TM) and Weatherhead®. For more information, visit www.hydraulics.eaton.com.

Eaton Corporation is a diversified industrial manufacturer with 2006 sales of $12.4 billion. Eaton is a global leader in electrical systems and components for power quality, distribution and control; fluid power systems and services for industrial, mobile and aircraft equipment; intelligent truck drivetrain systems for safety and fuel economy; and automotive engine air management systems, powertrain solutions and specialty controls for performance, fuel economy and safety. Eaton has 62,000 employees and sells products to customers in more than 125 countries. For more information, visit www.eaton.com.

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