In marine applications, valve actuation refers to the process of opening and closing various types of valves on ships and other marine vessels to control the flow of fluids (such as water, oil, fuel, or gases) within the vessel’s systems. These valves play a crucial role in ensuring the safe and efficient operation of different systems on a ship, including those related to propulsion, ballast control, cooling, heating, and various other functions.

Valve actuation in marine applications typically involves the use of mechanical, hydraulic, pneumatic, or electrical systems to operate the valves. Here are some common types of valve actuation mechanisms used in the maritime industry:

  1. Manual Valve Actuation: This involves manual operation by a person turning a valve handle, wheel, or lever. Manual valve actuation is often used for smaller and less critical systems on board ships.
  2. Hydraulic Valve Actuation: Hydraulic systems use pressurized fluid to control the movement of valves. Hydraulic valve actuators are suitable for larger and high-pressure applications, such as those found in the ship’s propulsion system or steering system.
  3. Pneumatic Valve Actuation: Pneumatic actuators use compressed air to operate valves. They are commonly employed in less critical marine systems, such as those for cargo handling.
  4. Electric Valve Actuation: Electric actuators use electrical power to control the valve’s position. They are used in a wide range of marine systems, including ventilation, water treatment, and other automated processes.

Valves can serve various purposes on a ship, including regulating the flow of fluids, isolating different sections of the ship’s systems, and providing emergency shut-off in case of a system failure or emergency. Proper valve actuation is critical to maintaining the safety, performance, and efficiency of a vessel’s operations. Valves need to be regularly inspected, maintained, and operated to ensure they function as intended.

SIT partners with Emerson to provide valve actuation for customers in various marine applications. As the exclusive partner for Emerson offshore applications in North America, SIT has the local presence to provide excellent customer support as well as the backing of a globally recognized manufacturer. Contact us to learn more.


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