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Fire protection fitted to eight storage tanks at Shell Gas Project in Ireland

Fire protection supplied by Patol, the designer and manufacturer of specialist fire detection products for industrial applications, has been fitted to each of eight storage tanks on behalf of Shell E&P Ireland Limited (SEPIL).

SEPIL is the operator of the Corrib gas project, which is one of the largest and most challenging engineering projects in Ireland. Discovered in 1996, the Corrib reservoir is a medium-sized gas field situated some 83km off Ireland’s northwest coast.  At peak production Corrib gas has the potential to supply up to 60% of Ireland’s gas needs.

The Corrib development has four distinct parts: the offshore wells and subsea facility; the offshore pipelines from the wells to landfall; the onshore pipeline between the landfall and the gas terminal and; the Bellanaboy Bridge Gas Terminal.  The gas will be processed and dried at the Terminal before it joins the Irish (Bord Gáis Eireann) gas pipeline. The Patol tanks protected are sealed floating roof tanks constituting the facility’s tank farm.

When installing the tank protection systems at the Bellanaboy Bridge Terminal, the main contractors working for SEPIL turned to Patol, the privately owned UK company.  Based in Berkshire, Patol specialises in the production of systems based on infrared heat and flame sensors and linear heat detection cable (LHDC). It was the linear heat detection system that was chosen to safeguard the tanks due to the considerable aesthetic considerations on the site.

The LHDC system ensures the safe operation of electrical equipment by limiting the energy available for ignition. Many aspects of the digital LHDC system protecting the tank farm – from the automatic cable reel down to the clips specified for fixing the cable – were adapted and modified for the Bellanaboy Bridge Gas Terminal.  The modifications carried out by Patol to the custom-fitted systems, meant that they delivered the highest standard of fire detection for the eight sealed floating roof tanks.

Patol, currently the only LHDC manufacturer capable of supplying a SIL2-certified system specifically designed for use in the POG industry, also supplied a custom-built SIL2-approved control panel for the Corrib Gas Project.

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