Maloney Pipeline & Prover Spheres

Compression Molded for Optimum Resiliency and Wear-Resistance

Maloney branded products are compression molded for optimum resiliency, wear resistance and service life. Spheres are compression molded at cavity pressures exceeding 2000PSI (137 Bar). This process is essential in ensuring uniform density of the compounded material thereby minimizing voids so often seen in spheres produced by other molding techniques.

During sphere production, each molded hemisphere is subjected to an intensive physical inspection. Following assembly and post-curing, every sphere is inflated to a specified increased diameter for 24 hours. This critical step is taken to assure that every Maloney Sphere that leaves our factory will fulfill the exacting demands of the task for which it was designed.

Inflatable spheres are available in 6" thru 42" sizes. Solid spheres are available from 1-1/2" through 4" diameters. Other sizes are available on special order. Maloney has the widest sphere range in the industry and spheres are available in various elastomeric materials designed to perform in specific end user applications. Maloney spheres will pass through short bends, well designed tees, and full opening conduit type valves. They will pass through out-of-round pipe, will wear evenly, and can be wear-compensated by adjusting the diameter by inflating.

Uses of Maloney Spheres

  • Liquid displacer in Meter Prover Loops
  • Liquid product separator
  • Signal actuating device
  • Two-phase flow
  • Hydrostatic testing
  • Liquid removal in gas lines

General Recommended Service Applications

Sphere TypeMinimumMaximumDurometerRecommended Use
Neoprene-20° F (-29° C)280° F (138° C)60 +/- 5Shore AGeneral purpose, pipeline, hydrocarbon & chemical service
Nitrile -15° F (-25° C)212° F (100° C)60 +/- 5Shore AExposure to n-octane, hydrocarbons & petroleum gas, water, gasoline, and diesel oil
Hi-Temp Nitrile-15° F (-25° C)325° F (162° C)70 +/- 5Shore AFor use in geothermal applications, hot asphalt pipelines and general pipeline service in elevated conditions
Polyurethane U-53 (Yellow)-20° F (-29° C)in oil 170° F (77° C)
in water 140° F (60° C)
53 +/- 5Shore AMeter prover service, low temperature distillate removal service
Polyurethane U-58 (Green)0° F. (-18° C)in oil 170° F (77° C)
in water 140° F (60° C)
58 +/- 5Shore AGas distillate removal at greater than 600psi. Long line distillate removal service where temperatures are 60° F. or greater
Polyurethane U-66 (Red)0° F. (-18° C)in oil 170° F (77° C)
in water 140° F (60° C)
66 +/- 5Shore AGas distillate removal at greater than 600psi.General pipeline usage for situations requiring long runs or when pipeline is especially rough
Polyurethane U-88 (Blue)0° F. (-18° C)170° F (77° C)88 +/- 5Shore AFor heavy duty removal of liquid hydrocarbons and condensates, and for pipelines with highly corrosive products

Low-Friction SLC Spheres are available in the above materials, stainless steel valves, and valve plates.

Spheres For Mechanical Displacement Meter Provers

The efficiency of Maloney Spheres in the evacuation or displacement of liquids in pipelines is well proven by the fact that they are the most popular spheres used for mechanical displacement meter provers.

Line Testing & Cleaning

During the hydrostatic testing of pipelines, spheres are inserted ahead of the water column. As the spheres move through the line, being pushed by the water, they purge all air from the line. During the testing phase the sphere remains in the line and is unaffected by the test pressures. Following the test, the sphere can return to the starting point, evacuating the test water. In addition, if the line must be freed from all traces of moisture, the same spheres can be used to contain a slug of alcohol between them, absorbing all remaining traces of moisture as they travel through the line. In cleaning pipelines, the use of spheres to confine the batch of cleaning solution permits moving the solution back and forth through the line by alternately applying pressure at each end of the line.

Liquid Batch Separation

Maloney spheres are used for batch separation in lines carrying two or more products. The use of multiple spheres is one of the methods of decreasing the potential of mixing of the product batches. Spheres are used between different grades of gasoline, crude and other liquid petroleum products. Arrival of the spheres at check points is registered by detectors (See Maloney Series III Detector Brochure). The signals from the detectors may be used to activate the operation of various types of valves to accomplish a variety of functions.

Liquid Fillers

Inflatable spheres must be filled with liquid and sized to proper diameter. Recommendations are a guide only, experience will allow more accurate sizing for any given line under actual operating conditions.