Article re-posted with permission from Parker Hannifin Sealing & Shielding Team.
Original content can be found on Parker’s Website.
Technology advancements and new-to-world discoveries are constantly creating a new series of challenges for seal materials in the Oil and Gas industry. In today’s environments, seals are being pushed to perform in temperature, pressure and chemical extremes never before thought to be obtainable with rubber products. Application pressures exceeding 20,000 psi, service temperatures ranging from -40°F to upwards of 500°F, and exposure to some of the most aggressive media on the planet are placing immense amounts of stress on sealing elements. Parker’s FF400-80 compound has been formulated to provide a solution to all of these sealing challenges.
FF400-80 Compound – FFKM Product Features
- Temperature range: -40° to 527°F
- Best-in-Class low-temperature FFKM
- Excellent compression set resistance
- RGD resistant per ISO 23936-2 and TOTAL GS EP PVV 142
- Sour service H2S resistant per ISO 23936-2
- Maintained resilience at high pressures and low temperatures
- Great for use in HTHP applications
Sounds great, but what’s the catch?
An Achilles heel of perfluoroelastomer (FFKM) compounds has long been lack of low-temperature flexibility and resilience. In a sealing application, the ability for a material to push back on the mating hardware is called resilience and is very important to prevent a leak. A method of measuring a rubber compound’s low-temperature resilience is by performing a temperature of retraction test per ASTM D1329. See Parker’s O-Ring eHandbook for more information on low-temperature effects. Parker’s FF400 compound has a best in class TR-10 temperature of -23°F (-31°C). This property gives FF400 the low-temperature performance never seen before from an FFKM compound. The FF400 offers low temperature sealing capability approximately 45°F below a standard FFKM compound and has an overall recommended service temperature range of -40°F to 527°F. This low-temperature capability can be extremely valuable for surface equipment such as valves but can also give an advantage in high-pressure applications where the glass transition temperature can shift causing a loss of resilience and flexibility.
FF400 also offers excellent resistance to Rapid Gas Decompression (RGD) damage. This compound has passed multiple industry standard RGD tests with perfect ratings of 0000 in multiple cross-sectional thicknesses. This characteristic is very important in applications such as compressors, valves, pumps, and various subsea equipment where a rapid reduction in gas pressures can cause significant damage to the seals. Having tested at multiple cross-sectional thicknesses, FF400 ensures that no matter the seal size the compound will resist damage caused by rapid gas decompression. It is very common for industry standard requirements such as NORSOK M-710, ISO23936-2, and TOTAL GS EP PVV 142 to be required by customers before a compound is considered for use in an application. Test reports and certifications can be supplied for FF400, as well as several other compounds, by Parker O-Ring and Engineered Seals Division’s Applications Engineering team.
Lastly, Parker’s FF400 compound provides an extremely broad compatibility spectrum for the harshest of oil and gas media. Fluids such as crude oil, water, acids, aromatic hydrocarbons, bromides, brines, amines, and various gases are commonly seen in the oilfield and all can cause issues with rubber sealing compounds. However, one of the most common that is inquired about is compatibility with hydrogen sulfide (H2S) due to its toxicity, corrosive nature, and its presence of various concentrations in naturally occurring oil and natural gas reservoirs. Known also as Sour Gas, the higher the H2S concentration the sourer, more corrosive, and more aggressive the fluid stream becomes for sealing materials. Parker’s FF400 is a great option for these sour gas applications as it has the ability to resist chemical attack, and performs where H2S concentrations can be found at 20% and higher. All of these characteristics make the FF400 an optimal solution for use in compressors, pumps, valves, downhole tools, subsea chokes and other critical devices across the oil and gas industry.