A Look into Pressure Vessels and How They Are Made

February 17, 2014

In the past, old boilers and pressure vessels were so prone to explosions, and true to form, they caused considerable losses including damage to property and loss of life. The risks in handling pressure vessels led to the formation of various engineering societies with the goal of establishing standard safety rules in the construction and use of pressure vessels and boilers.

Steel has always been the first choice when it comes to the manufacture of boilers and pressure vessels, thanks to the material’s high tensile strength. Pressure vessels have the ability to store gasses and hot liquids safely without causing any damage to the container.

Pressure vessels, especially the ones with industry applications, are designed to be leak-tight pressure containers. They are usually cylindrical in shape, with various head patterns and configurations. While many are made from steel sheets, some are use carbon as pressure vessel material. Both are assembled by welding. Certain pressure vessel boards regularly meet to consider the latest proposed revisions on the way pressure containers are supposed to be made. There are existing codes and rules that need to be followed to ensure the safety and dependability of pressure vessels being used by the public.

Large industrial boilers and pressure vessels should undergo regular inspection to guarantee the safety of the people near them. Companies who use pressure vessels hire engineering experts to inspect and evaluate the condition of their tanks.

Metal pressure vessels are used as gas nuclear reactors, industrial boilers, and petrochemical factories. Manufacturers of pressure vessels always make sure that their products meet the international safety standards considering the fact that they will act as storage to hot liquids and gases. The high malleable feature of steel makes it ideal for these types of industrial applications. Pressure vessels have the ability to withstand hot liquids and gasses.

There are two major types of pressure vessels – simple vessels and complex vessels. The former is made minus sections and complex support systems. Pressure vessels carrying nitrogen are samples of this type. Complex vessels, on the other hand, are those that were built with sections and support systems.

When designing pressure vessels, a lot of factors are considered including:

  • Internal and external dynamic and static forces
  • The various kinds of temperatures including ambient and operational
  • The weight of the vessel and its contents
  • Various types of stresses such as localised stress, residual stress, and thermal stress and their areas of concentrations
  • Container reaction from attachments, piping, et cetera
  • Material fatigue
  • Metal corrosion

These containers are usually coated with ceramics, other forms of metal, and polymers. The lining provides protection on the structural integrity of the pressure vessel and prevents leaking.

Most pressure vessels are designed as sphere-shaped tanks because they are more stable in that shape. The walls of a pressure vessel tend to bow because f the pressure and shaping the container like a sphere takes advantage of this innate tendency.

Contact Details

Fusion - Weld Engineering Pty Ltd
ABN 98 068 987619

1865 Frankston Flinders Road,
Hastings, VIC 3915

Ph: (03) 5909 8218

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