Striking A Balance For Fuel Loading Operations

By OPW | Aug 23, 2019

Satisfying the needs of clients is a tenet of all businesses, and in the fuel-supply industry, meeting very specific parameters is part of the game. When NuStar of San Antonio, TX received a new supply contract, they began pushing the bounds of what was feasible for their operation.

With terminals across the country, NuStar has enormous capacity for the transportation of gasoline, diesel, ethanol and other fuels. At the company’s Stockton, CA facility, a new contract for loading and moving red-dyed diesel fuel by truck and then rail was proving challenging, however.

The time-consuming nature of loading trucks and then bottom loading railcars was becoming a serious pain point, so it was time to consider building a new rail siding that would address the ergonomic and safety concerns of the operation as well. While a new siding was under construction, the next consideration was which loading arms would be the most appropriate for the application.

For loading arms to be a suitable fit, NuStar needed them to be long enough to easily extend out to each of the railcars positioned on the siding, to feature drop tubes long enough to reach the railcar’s floor and to have torsion-spring operation, not pneumatic. How could they achieve each of these qualifications?

NuStar was faced with a limited number of solutions, but the OPW Engineered Systems 890 Series “Hi-Load” Counterbalance for loading arms was a snug fit, as it could handle heavy loads without a pneumatic system. Cutting out the need for additional support structures helped NuStar meet its budget for the supply contract while making operations easier and safer for its staff. The new loading system even cut loading time from five cars in ten hours to six cars in three-and-a-half hours.

Engineering What’s Next in Fuel-Supply Solutions

890 Series Counterbalances played a key role in enhancing NuStar’s loading capabilities and helping them to live up to their contract. These components provided the performance, versatility and reliability needed to successfully tackle such a challenging operation without heaping a mountain of expenses and labor onto the fuel supplier.

To learn more about OPW Engineered Systems’ loading arms, please visit opw-es.com/fastarms or contact OPW Engineered Systems. For more on OPW Engineered Systems' products, please go to www.opw-es.com

 

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