Fusion™ 944 is specifically designed to handle RGD (Rapid Gas Decompression) in extreme environments, enhancing safety and reliability in compressors, mechanical seals and valves. RGD occurs when gas molecules permeate an elastomer while in a compressed state. If the pressure surrounding the elastomer is suddenly released, the compressed gas will expand and try to escape the material, often resulting in o-ring failure.
Various FKM elastomers have been developed to resist RGD in the past, but new trends of drilling deeper and extracting lower quality gases have made conditions in oil and gas exploration, production and refining increasingly challenging. Additionally, new markets like EOR (Enhanced Oil Recovery) and CSS (Carbon Capture and Storage) are generating more demanding RGD conditions. As temperatures, pressure and media all become more severe in these processes, a need has arisen for new elastomers capable of performing in exceptionally harsh RGD environments.
The ideal RGD elastomer combines high tensile strength to prevent crack propagation with high elongation to dissipate the energy associated with an RGD event. Because tensile strength and elongation are mutually exclusive, the challenge is to improve both parameters within the same material.
Fusion™ 944 is the first elastomer to achieve both high tensile strength and elongation, enabling it to withstand the most extreme RGD conditions. It has passed ISO 23936-2 with zero damage at 390°F (200°C), 2,175 PSI (150 bar) and at a decompression rate of 2,175 PSI (150 bar)/minute (see test 5). It is the first elastomer ever to attain this, making Fusion™ 944 exceptionally well suited for applications in extreme environments.
Results from ISO 23936-2 are rated on a scale of 0 – 5 based on visual assessment. A score of 0 – 3 is considered passing; a score of 4 or 5 is considered failing. Examples of each may be seen below, with a 0 being free of any cracks, holes, or blisters, and a 5 being split through.
Fusion™ 944 has successfully passed the ISO 23936-2 and three other more difficult tests described below with ratings of 0. There were no cracks, holes or blisters in any of the samples tested and all exposed surfaces were intact. Fusion™ 944 also passed a fifth test (test 4) with ratings of 1-1-0-0. Additional tests will be performed to define the limit of this material.