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API 53 Compliance

The American Petroleum Institute issued Standard 53 in November 2012. The purpose of this standard is to provide requirements on the installation and testing of blowout prevention equipment systems on land and marine drilling rigs (barge, platform, bottom-supported, and floating). Blowout preventer equipment systems are comprised of a combination of various components. The following components are required for operation under varying rig and well conditions:
a) blowout preventers (BOPs); b) choke and kill lines; c) choke manifolds; d) control systems; e) auxiliary equipment.

BOPs are used on subsea wells to ‘shut-in’ a well in an emergency. API Standard 53 requires the secondary intervention of BOP shear rams to close in 45-seconds or less, to avoid washing out or eroding the seals. Historically, large and heavy accumulator banks have been the solution in shallow waters, but are inefficient at deeper depths. Before now, ROVs alone had not been able to meet this requirement due to the simultaneous high-pressure and high-flow necessary -- but the UHD-III ROV with ISOL-8 pump now fulfills these requirements. It was engineered with these factors in mind:

  • Shell and BP consulted to identify the most challenging BOPs.
  • Gathered data from engineers at major BOP manufacturers; GE-Hydril, Cameron and NOV-Shaffer. 
  • For the target BOPs identified by Shell and BP, the largest volume-to-close is approximately 40 gallons.
  • Maximum allowable pressure is 5,000psi.
  • Pump will close super-shear (casing) rams, but time may exceed 45 seconds.  


The American Petroleum Institute and API 53 Compliance

The American Petroleum Institute (API) is the only national trade association that represents all aspects of America’s oil and natural gas industry. API has more than 600 corporate members, from the largest major oil company to the smallest of independents, come from all segments of the industry. They are producers, refiners, suppliers, pipeline operators and marine transporters, as well as service and supply companies that support all segments of the industry.


Typical Shear Ram Operating Region

ISOL-8 Pump Performance