Many clients asked us this question, how to revert API to micron of separation point/cut point or mesh for shaker screen mesh, even many of shaker screens manufacturers do not know this well. Some manufacturers use the API number as mesh directly, this is incorrect, if clients do not have professional knowledge, they will use the wrong mesh screens and can not get the ideal result.
Shaker screen API is another mean indicating screen mesh size but more standard and compatible. Mesh size or designation from different suppliers will indicate various separation point or D100 cut point then come to certain API size according to latest API RP13C.
This is a chart to show how to convert mesh to microns, to know how to convert microns (D100 separation), then to know how to convert mesh to API, or API to mesh.
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American Petroleum Institute has laid down the guidelines for solid control systems in drilling industry. However, the main purpose of this standardization was to provide the end user with a fair idea of what they are investing their money into, when the purchase a certain type of shaker screens.
Now, before we delve into the benchmarking by API, let us give you an overview of what the shaker screen is or why is it that important to be researched about?
Drilling is widely used activity in oil and gas industry, to obtain deep seated fossil fuel to fulfill the fuel requirement across the globe, and that makes this industry quite enormous. The drilling operations are carried out on hard ground surface or on the ocean surface. In the entire drilling process, one of the main challenges is the handling of the drilling waste , it is called solid control system. The drilling waste mainly consists of drilling cuttings (solid) and drilling fluid (mud). Now the drill cuttings are nothing but the rock shavings and other hard particles that are extracted during drilling, the drilling fluid is a mixture of different chemicals and oil or water. The drilling fluid is quite expensive substance and is added to the drilling process to help drilling waste equipments lubricated and cool, besides other things.
API being one of the largest trading group of US in drilling industry, has set up certain industry standards to test the quality of shaker screens, that are respected worldwide. Based on these tests, they have labeled different shaker screens sizes that approved by ISO, and encourage the manufacturers to use those labels on the product to enable the end user for a fair comparison before purchase.
While quality of different shaker screens cannot alone assure its performance, as the actual performance, in terms of conductance and life, will depend on a variety of aspects. To name a few – Handling of shaker screen, installation and replacement, appropriate tensioning, deck rubbers, storage and cleaning, volume of mud and solids, etc.
As it goes with any project operations, many a times the disaster will take place because of very basic things were overlooked or not taken care of. So prevention is better than the cure, following this philosophy, let us outline for you a few tips that could make you shaker screen last longer than you imagined:
1. A shaker screen is the most critical component of shale shaker , as it plays an important role in separating the solid from fluid. If the shaker screen let the large solid pieces pass through the screen, chances are that they will end up chocking the whole equipment and making your project operation to halt in no time. So make sure that you select the most optimum screen size.
2. Timely preventive supervision of any shaker screens will go a long way in preventing any lasting damage to the equipment itself. The moment any wear and tear is spotted in the screen, even any blockage, consider taking it off and either clean it thoroughly before replacing or go for a new one altogether if the screen is not in good condition or reusable.
3. Do not use sticks or brushes while cleaning the shaker screen, also make sure that you don’t end up using extra high pressure water guns to clear the screen holes, as it might be harmful for finer meshes.
4. Mishandling may also cause damage to shaker screen during Storage. As storage of shaker screens is often times the most overlooked aspect. The screens storage in a way that prevents them from friction or jerks that might cause them to be torn away.
5. The overall functioning of the equipment is also an important aspect, make sure that the deck rubbers are properly installed and not worn out. Also look at the condition of shaker basket.
6. Always go for API conformed shaker screens only as to ensure the quality of your screen.