The industry’s first SIL 3 certified single controller for water and steam enables plants to protect valuable assets and improve worker safety

23 May 2017

Emerson’s water and steam detection system is the world’s first single controller solution to be certified to IEC 61508 for safety instrumented functions up to SIL 3. The Mobrey™ Hydratect™ 2462 Water and Steam Detection System is used in a wide variety of applications where the detection of water or steam is vital for safe and efficient plant operation, such as boilers, steam drums and steam line drain pots. This helps to protect valuable plant assets, prevent downtime, save costs and improve worker safety.

The functional safety assessment performed by Exida enhances Hydratect’s reputation for reliability and durability. Exida, world leaders in functional safety certification, have assessed Hydratect and determined that it meets the requirements of SIL 3. The Hydratect system is ideal for the most demanding applications within power generation, refineries, chemical, steel, pulp and paper plants. It can operate in process conditions of up to 300 bar and 560°C. Failure of equipment in such applications can have serious consequences – the Hydratect offers the benefit of SIL 3 approval guaranteeing its reliability.

Hydratect is a modern replacement for conventional float switches, and consists of a compact twin-channel electronic unit, connected to a pair of electrodes. Each channel gives independent indications of the presence of water or steam that are more reliable than those obtained with electro-mechanical devices, which have the possibility of failing in an unsafe condition. By installing the electrodes in vessels or steam lines and measuring the resistance, the presence of water can be detected, allowing appropriate safety measures to be taken.

By detecting low water level in steam drums, Hydratect helps to prevent boiler tubes overheating, which could lead to an explosion, while detecting high water level prevents the generation of wet steam which could cause costly turbine blade erosion. Using Hydratect to detect water in steam line drain pots, as part of a turbine water induction prevention system (TWIP), helps prevent damage to turbine blades, cylinders and the housing.

The electronics unit provides a local indication of steam, water and fault states, and features configurable fault and trip outputs. Component failure, cable faults, ground faults and electrode problems are continuously self-monitored. Additional reliability is provided by triple redundancy of critical components, which ensures that failures result in a safe condition. An individual power supply to each channel further enhances reliability.

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About Emerson
Emerson (NYSE: EMR), headquartered in St. Louis, Missouri (USA), is a global technology and engineering company providing innovative solutions for customers in industrial, commercial, and residential markets. Our Emerson Automation Solutions business helps process, hybrid, and discrete manufacturers maximize production, protect personnel and the environment while optimizing their energy and operating costs. Our Emerson Commercial and Residential Solutions business helps ensure human comfort and health, protect food quality and safety, advance energy efficiency, and create sustainable infrastructure. For more information visit