Pipe expansion joints are typical devices in industrial settings. As significant components contributing to a pipeline’s functionality, expansion joints can absorb vibrations, movements, and thermal expansion that can cause material deformation and misalignment.
Considering their importance, many industries with piping systems utilize this equipment. Here are the different industries that use pipe expansion joints.
Oil refineries operate with media in flair lines to produce biogas. With hydrogen sulfide being very flammable and toxic, this material poses a significant risk to human safety.
Fortunately, hinged expansion joints can absorb angular movements produced during operation, resisting pressure thrusts and reducing loads on fixed points. This maintains those emissions within the pipeline so they don’t contaminate the surrounding environment.
While thermal expansion and contraction are common in many industries, the need for expansion joints is unique to every operation. In plumbing, water and environmental temperature may increase, causing fluctuations in pipe length.
Since plumbing designers do not account for expansion and contraction during system design, the movement can cause compressive stress on the system. While this can weaken pipelines and cause leaks, an expansion joint can deflect vibrations, allowing mechanisms to move while limiting stress.
Power plants need to produce electricity for society to function. With these facilities often converting mechanical energy into electrical energy, they require robust pipelines that support production.
Like most industries on this list, pipelines often transport material at high temperatures. Given this detail, using metal expansion joints are better to use than rubber.
In the power plant industry, expansion joints can serve the following applications:
- Low-pressure steam mechanisms
- Steam boilers
- Hot air ducts
- Feed water systems
- Cooling water lines
With these components being such necessary elements to pipelines, it’s no wonder there are different industries that use pipe expansion joints! It would be wise to incorporate these devices into a system and ensure the structure can safely transport material without issue.