Ball Kits Made of Various Metal Alloys/Super-alloys for Metal-to-Metal Seals

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In these kits, the common component is a lapped ball that helps achieve a uniform radius and high roundness quality. Depending on the ball material, spherical grinding may be required prior to lapping process. In order to verify the extent of the required degrees of freedom, the lapping process is simulated in an MBD-based software such as Adams which can be easily implemented for different types of balls with various dimensions. These lapped balls are used in a variety of applications, such as in motion transmitters to control vibration oscillations or as metal-to-metal seals in safety and control valves. Examples of these valves include Upper IBOP and Lower IBOP valves which are employed along a top drive system. During operation, these valves block the drilling mud passage by means of an automatic or manual operator, thereby making drill pipes replacement possible. IBOP valves can also be used to block passages in emergencies or to control unexpected pressures during drilling operations. Design and manufacture of these valves (with a 22000 psi test pressure) involve a long list of considerations: selection of materials, coatings, heat operations and connections, all of which follow API 7-1 and ISO 10424: 1 standards. Below are some of the challenges in designing and manufacturing these equipment: • Resistance against H2S corrosion and compliance with ANSI NACE MR0175 standard • Resistance against the applied Torsional moment • Metal-to-metal sealing at the contact area between the ball and seats • Nickel-based superalloy Forging of ball and subsequent heat treatment operations to achieve the desired properties • Grinding and Spherical Lapping • HVOF tungsten carbide coating to enhance abrasion resistance in ball and seats • The mechanical simulation to ensure the strength of the equipment against the internal stress. • Zinc Phosphate Coating to enhance the Galling resistance of the joints • Cold working of joints’ thread • Applying the REG API gauge to check the joints’ thread and sealing level

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