April 27, 2015
We tend to jump to the obvious answers when asked where pressurised vessels find their homes. There's nothing wrong with that line of reasoning. Sturdy vessels do indeed find service in common industries, in oil refineries and laundry boilers. They're crucial containers for densely contained gases and fluids that are heated and transformed into the secondary states that crack long chain petroleum molecules, but the petroleum industry doesn't have tenure over this storage medium. Let's take a journey through some of the other applications for pressurized vessels, some of which you'll recognize and some you'll raise a surprised eyebrow at when you realize the importance of pressure-rated equipment in that specialized industry.
In starting our tour, let's look at one of the more unique entrants. The stringently designed diving chamber is built to contain submersible gear and man-sized storage areas. These vessels can sink under controlled circumstances to a great depth. There's an entire science based around diving chambers and their adventurous descent into unexplored waters, but this science also finds its way into more mundane places. Known as hyperbaric technology, the business of creating new medicines under precisely controlled atmospheric conditions is a major new enterprise, one that requires pressure equipment and instrumentation.
That last example applies to medicine and exploration, to the hyperbaric treatment of illnesses and the care of dive injuries, but not all pressurized containers are built for such proprietary purposes. The oil refinery scenario we opened with uses countless forms of tanks and storage chambers, each shaped and manufactured to fill an exacting design. Heat exchangers and complex distillation platforms provide the bulk of the work here, but we can fly past this application and look at the fields of fuel depots and fuel production facilities that are assembling to reinforce this refinery model. Biofuel agencies drive this model, sending pressurized vessels and their associated support gear away from oil platforms and into the agricultural domain.
Heat produces pressure, that's just how the laws of physics work. As such, one primary application where rolled and welded ferrous chambers are irreplaceable has to be the manufacturing business of industrial boilers. Domestic versions of these sealed mechanical receptacles are designed for low pressure applications, but the industrial boiler chamber is built for a super-heated medium, meaning a rating of several hundred PSI is not uncommon.
Look for more examples of pressurized vessels in the medical field and in the transport of fuel, in freight ships that carry hazardous materials and in business markets where compressed storage of everything from breathable air to toxic gas is required.
Fusion - Weld Engineering Pty Ltd
ABN 98 068 987619
1865 Frankston Flinders Road,
Hastings, VIC 3915
Ph: (03) 5909 8218
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