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Prevent Hackers from Destroying a Gas Fuel Train

  • Luis Ayala
Chapter

Abstract

A fuel train is a specially designed series of pipes, valves, regulators, and switches located in the mechanical room, supplying pressurized fuel to industrial burners. A typical fuel train has several components, each with a specific purpose. The manual shut-off valve (MSOV) is used to shut off the fuel supply for maintenance. A gas pressure regulator valve (PRV) maintains the fuel at a constant pressure. A low- pressure gas switch equipped with a safety lockout senses when gas pressure is too low for the burner to operate properly. This tells the operator to check the gas pressure, since the burner will not try to restart until the switch is reset.

Keywords

Firing Rate Open Valve Modulate Motor Fuel Supply Spontaneous Combustion 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

A fuel train is a specially designed series of pipes, valves, regulators, and switches located in the mechanical room, supplying pressurized fuel to industrial burners. A typical fuel train has several components, each with a specific purpose. The manual shut-off valve (MSOV) is used to shut off the fuel supply for maintenance. A gas pressure regulator valve (PRV) maintains the fuel at a constant pressure. A low- pressure gas switch equipped with a safety lockout senses when gas pressure is too low for the burner to operate properly. This tells the operator to check the gas pressure, since the burner will not try to restart until the switch is reset.

Safety shut-off valves (SSOV) automatically open and shut off the fuel supply to the burner. The vent valve is normally an open valve and energizes to close. Whenever the SSOV is closed, the vent valve is open, so if any gas is leaking it will vent to the atmosphere.

A high gas pressure switch is installed to shut down the burner before an unsafe condition can occur. This switch is equipped with a safety lockout that tells the operator that the gas regulator failed since the burner will not restart until the switch is manually reset. A firing rate valve equipped with a modulating motor controlled by boiler pressure or temperature regulates the amount of fuel to the burner and controls the air damper.

A hacker would seek to defeat the safety features and allow gas pressure to build up and exceed the design limits of the fuel train. This may be possible if the SSOVs are prevented from shutting off the fuel supply in a high gas pressure situation. The SSOV would need to remain open to prevent the vent valve from being vented. Alternatively, if the SSOV is allowed to open and close quickly, vented gas would fill the mechanical room where the boiler is located resulting in spontaneous combustion.

Copyright information

© Luis Ayala 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Luis Ayala
    • 1
  1. 1.FredericksburgUSA

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