Performance Enhancing Heat Transfer Solutions

Andy Scott, Director – Heat Transfer Division

3rd February 2021

2020 was a very challenging year and one of great uncertainty. But at Glacier Energy we are here to give our clients complete peace of mind when it comes to looking after their most critical assets and infrastructure.

Like the rest of the industry, the heat transfer market has been heavily influenced by factors such as cost, technology advancements and energy efficiency and we continue to invest in these areas to help our clients achieve safer, more profitable, and sustainable operations. 

At Glacier Energy, we offer a full turnkey service comprising the design, manufacture, repair and maintenance of heat transfer equipment including full failure analysis to help restore assets to optimal working condition, saving significant time and money. Over the years, we have bolstered our expertise with the acquisition of several leading and specialist brands including Ross Offshore, MSL Heat Transfer, Aberdeen Radiators and Whiteley Read Engineering, further strengthening our heat transfer expertise and capability.

Operating internationally, we are at the forefront of thermal technology, offering innovative and effective heat transfer products, with a strong focus on managing energy efficiency.

Heat Exchanger Design and Manufacturing

We provide standardised off-the-shelf equipment, pioneering and bespoke new-build solutions, and reverse engineering for obsolete units, to meet exact technical specifications. Specifically, we specialise in the design and manufacturing of heat exchangers, storage vessels, filters, pig launchers, pressure containing equipment and radiators.

As one of the only dedicated design and manufacturing companies in the UK with specialist thermal and mechanical engineering capabilities, we support clients across the entire energy sector including renewables and alternative energy, as part of our collective efforts to achieve net zero by 2050.

Preventative Maintenance

Now more than ever, Operators are under continued pressure to optimise the performance of their essential equipment to maximise productivity and reduce maintenance downtime. Preventative maintenance is essential to make sure equipment performs at its best to improve integrity, safeguard operational efficiency and mitigate the need for a major shutdown. This is even more pertinent for the aging assets in the North Sea, where the focus is on extending the life of critical equipment, at the lowest possible cost.

Repair and Refurbishment 

One of the biggest changes I have seen over recent years is the volume of refurbishment work coming through the door, mostly down to clients not wanting to spend upfront and hold spare units in stock. 

As well as offering re-tubing, resealing, reconditioning and the replacement of spare parts, we can carry out health checks of equipment to improve performance, reliability, energy efficiency and prevent unplanned downtime, giving our clients complete peace of mind.

Failure Analysis

When heat exchanger failures do occur, Glacier Energy has a range of failure analysis services and a team of subject matter experts on hand to offer key insights into the workings of the equipment to ensure we get to the root of the problem and find a solution that can restore the asset to optimal working condition.​ 

Examples of these failures, include: fatigue cracking; stress corrosion cracking; fouling; freezing; mechanical fatigue due to vibrations; welding problems; corrosion due to tube sheet crevices; thermal fatigue; erosion; liquid drop-out change in operating conditions; lack of maintenance and more.

Innovation and Technology

In support of our digital future and to provide greater efficiencies for our clients, we will soon be launching an innovative and predictive heat exchanger maintenance solution, to better manage risk through mitigating unplanned downtime.

HTX Digital is a non-intrusive monitoring and heat exchanger management solution that uses existing data, combined with predictive analytics, to trend and predict the future performance and degradation of heat exchangers leading to smarter decision-making and more effective maintenance scheduling.

Lost production in the UKCS due to heat transfer equipment failures, is estimated to be around £600million per annum and HTX Digital can help reduce maintenance costs and unplanned downtime by up to 30%. 

2021 is likely to be a difficult year for the industry and Glacier Energy will not be immune to any of the challenges. However, to support our future growth and meet the continued demand for our services, we are moving to a larger design and manufacturing facility in Aberdeen. This move demonstrates our ongoing commitment to the energy sector and indeed the delivery of more innovative and pioneering heat transfer solutions as we look to continue growing our market share across all sectors including the oil & gas, onshore and alternative energy sectors.

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