Benoil Services Ltd

8.0.2 Burst Disc Assemblies: Basic Function

The uses to which burst discs are put in the oilfield are ever expanding. They are in circulation subs, motor head assemblies, fishing tools, expansion packer retrieval, safety heads, triggers, pipe isolation and several other special applications. Most of these, apart from the safety heads, have little to do with the original purpose of a burst disc as used for example on pipelines or in petrochemical plant, which is essentially as a safety release for over-pressure build-up. Oilfield applications are instead using burst discs as specific triggers to enable particular operations.
Typically, though not invariably, this means that a disc has an expected life before use of only hours or days. By contrast, an industrial safety disc may be in place for a year and never be burst. This, among many other factors referred to below, affects the nature of the disc design.

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