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Relief valve instability: a case study
Ouajih Hamouda, Mike Stojakovic

Last modified: 2018-04-16


This paper discusses some practical methods for assessing the design suitability of relief valve installations used for over pressure protection. A case study highlights the challenges that can arise during the phases of diagnosing and resolving problems associated with relief valve leakage flow, undesired opening, and reseat instability.

The avoidance of dynamically unstable valve behaviour (chatter) is particularly important. Unstable relief valve operation with high-frequency cycling of the valve disc can result in forceful impacts against the valve seat and rapid damage. To explore the fluid-structural dynamic interaction effects, simplified numerical and empirical techniques are presented. The analysis considers transient pressure wave propagation and attenuation, piping system and valve disc interactions, and dynamic fluid coupling effects. Design recommendations are suggested for avoiding relief valve instability.


relief valve; chatter

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