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New LED lights up onshore drilling rigs’ hazard areas easily and efficiently

Emerson has introduced a new solution for the oil and gas industry to easily and safely illuminate land-based drilling rigs. The Appleton Rigmaster LED linear luminaire streamlines the cumbersome and time-consuming task of installing and maintaining bright, energy-efficient lighting in hazardous areas on drilling rigs.

“Rig maintenance workers require linear luminaires that are rugged and long lasting yet compact and easy-to-install, which can be a difficult solution to find for the engineers responsible for designing rig electrical systems,” Mustafa Bengali, Lighting Product Manager for Emerson Automation Solutions, said. “The Appleton Rigmaster solves these challenges by integrating LED technology into a lightweight, low-profile package that performs durably, is resistant to harsh conditions and damaging vibrations, yet allows faster, safer installations throughout the drilling rig.”

Minimal weight is a top priority for rig hands that must climb a derrick hundreds of feet high to install or change a fixture. The Appleton Rigmaster LED weighs a mere 10 lbs, making it significantly lighter than similar fixtures that can weigh as much as 30 lbs. Although compact, it delivers 8000 lumens of uniform lighting to promote a safer working environment. Even when used under a canopy or inside an analyzer house, the diffused lens option makes the Appleton Rigmaster LED an ideal solution for comfortable, no-glare illumination. Moreover, the Appleton Rigmaster LED’s wide distribution of light translates into fewer fixtures being needed in the rig’s mud pit, shaker, cellar and derrick. High efficiency LED drivers consume less than half the energy of standard T8 fluorescent fixtures, further lowering direct cost of operations and minimizing strain on the diesel generators that typically power drilling rigs.

Along with being lightweight, the Appleton Rigmaster LED provides installation flexibility in hazardous locations by offering a variety of mounting options that are well suited for retrofits as well as new rig builds. An easy to access hinged wiring compartment with captive hardware makes the installation experience smooth and safe. A wide operating temperature range of -40° to 65° C, and NPT (National Pipe Thread Tapered) hubs on each end for through wiring make this fixture a user-centric solution. To complete the package, an LED life of 60,000+ hours means years of maintenance-free operation, unlike fluorescents that may fail in six months or less and require constant maintenance.

Given safety concerns due to round-the-clock, high-vibration boring, secondary retention of a light fixture on drilling rigs is critical to prevent it from plunging from a high-rise mast. To help create a safer workplace environment, the Appleton Rigmaster LED features a looping safety cable through the fixture and around the mounting structure which helps secure the fixture. In addition, while some manufacturers screw on eyebolts, the Appleton Rigmaster LED provides five casted-in openings for safety cable retention points. The yoke bracket is also designed to ensure the bracket will stay in position regardless of heavy vibration and maintain its structural integrity. To take it a step further, captive hardware eliminates the possibility of a screw coming loose and falling out.

Built with a high degree of corrosion resistance, the Appleton Rigmaster LED features a gasketed, copper-free aluminum housing, plus a thermal-shock and impact-resistant polycarbonate lens. It is certified for Class I, Division 2 hazardous locations, National Electrical Manufacturers Association (NEMA) Type 3R, 4 and 4X wet and marine type areas. The fixture also meets IP66 rating requirements of being “dust tight” and protected against powerful jets of water.

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