Pressure vessels play important roles in pressurized static equipment systems. In the oil and gas industry, for example, they are used to perform the process function, separation, filtration, and storage. Given the role of pressure vessel, which is subject to elevated pressure, temperature, and fatal accidents have occurred in the history of pressure vessel, it is important that pressure vessel end-users feel confident that the pressure vessel they procure meet the safety requirements. This paper presents a case study where there have been breakdowns in the qualification of pressure vessels being offered by pressure vessel suppliers to the industry that did not comply with industry standards which can adversely impact plant operations and personnel safety. The loss of pressure vessel supplier credibility is a concern that may rarely occur in mature economies but seem to be more prevalent in countries where qualification standards are either relatively new or non-existent. To address this issue, the author presents a systematic approach that can be used to ensure that pressure vessels supplied to end-users in oil and gas industries in emerging countries meet the design requirements and standards they are required to meet. The process used to control the manufacturers begins with a qualification plan which each supplier has to establish its product line. Following compliance with the qualification plan, a criticality matrix is introduced to the manufacturers that classify the criticality of each pressure vessel type in the system and the associated qualification program(s) that the manufacturers need to meet. The validation with an established program has shown some merit and could be applied to all manufacturers in emerging countries to ensure consistency. The details of the qualification program used and how the process is evaluated are covered in the body of the paper together with examples of how the process has worked.

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