Ball Valve Types, Applications, And Advantages Explained
Out of many valve types used widely today, the Ball Valve takes a top spot. It’s a very simple mechanism, but very effective. Did you know that many industrial works use this valve type due to its effectiveness? Closed position and open position are the two positions of a Ball Valve. It’s dead simple. When the valve is in the closed position, it restricts the flow. When in open position, it allows the flow. “A ball valve is a form of quarter-turn valve which uses a hollow, perforated and pivoting ball to control flow through it.” Well, that’s what the Wikipedia says about the Ball Valve.
A picture says a thousand words As you can see in this picture, now the Ball Valve is in open position, so the flow can go through it. When you turn the lever, the ball does too; closing the pathway to the flow. Many types of Ball Valves are there and below is a list of its major components:
* Trust washer.
* Live loading.
* Upstream seat.
Anyway, a number of parts included depends on the type of valve. For example, a PVC Ball Valve doesn’t have many of the parts listed above
The valve handle moves the ball through a 90-degree angle. The handle also depends on the valve type. You need a spanner to turn the handle of robust pipe work such as in oil and gas plants.
World’s Largest Ball Valve: It’s a robust Ball Valve produced by the Italian manufacturer CIRCOR Energy. They have built two of these giant valves for a 450-kilometer pipeline in Saudi Arabia. Its flow capacity: 125,500 Cv. So, now you can understand the role of Ball Valves in today’s world.
Ball Valve types:
1) Split-Body Ball Valve: A two-part body, ball, cover, stem, seat rings, and other internal part are the main components of this type. The flange connection holds the two-part body together. The body parts are different in sizes (one part larger than the other, and the larger part houses the ball.) Threaded connections hold the two-part body together.
2) Top-Entry Ball Valve: As you can see in the picture, you can remove the top nuts/bolts and assembly, disassembly, maintenance, and repair the valve. So, you can repair the valve without taking off the pipeline. Widely used in robust water, oil, and gas pipeline works.
3) End-Entry Ball Valve: It’s a kind of inexpensive small valves. It has a single-piece body. Well, larger end-entry valves are there, but you can’t dismantle and repair them.
4) Three-Piece-Body Ball Valve: In this type, the middle part act as the major component holding the internal parts
Summary: Using Ball Valves comes with many advantages over other valve types. Metal alloy valves can be used for high-temperature related applications. Choose the type according to the application. I mean, each type has unique differences and features, so you can choose the right type depending on your job. Robust ones can be very expensive though.