Coker Valve Monitoring in a Tar Sand refinery


The customer is a world leader in the manufacture of valve systems for many different industries. The company manufactures ball, needle, control, gate, choke and many other types of valve systems from small to very large diameters.

Application / Problem

This application note is about a very specific application. The end user is running a tar sand refinery and uses a special 3-way switching valve in order to control the tar sand flow into the different coking towers. In the past the operation of the valve was not always reliable and caused very costly shutdowns of the refining process.


In order to monitor the operation of the valve the customer decided to install a Delphin TopMessage data logger to record all data during the valve movement. A TopMessage data logger with an ADFT module was selected which provided 8 analogue input channels sampling at high speed synchronously. The system measures the 3-phase engine current consumption and voltage. The strain sensor measures force and torque during the movement of the valve. The analogue inputs are configured for 1 kHz sample rate each.

The installed sensors are:

  • 1 x Strain gauge for torque measurement
  • 3 x Motor current probes
  • 1 x Motor voltage transducers
  • 2 control circuit voltage transducer