Expert Witness Forensic Engineer Industrial Controls Automation New Orleans
Arthur Zatarain
Project Profile
Industrial Accident: Dual Coil Solenoid Valve

Industrial accident: Operation of a dual coil solenoid valve in 3000 psi subsea hydraulic service. The investigation related to the BP Macondo / Transocean Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill. A key aspect was the valve's ability to function properly under pressure when the dual coils were powered with reversed polarity. The forensic analysis included operation both with and without the 3000 psi hydraulic pressure.

The technical issues included the design of both the coils and solenoid mechanics as well as the operation of the reverse-wired valve with pulse width modulation (PWM). Also considered was operation with reverse polatiry under the direct current (DC) for which the valve was originally designed.

 



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