Metal Bellows Expansion Joints
To begin with metal expansion joints are also referred to as metal bellow expansion joints, metallic expansion joints, and exhaust bellows. They are helpful for thermal expansion and movement in pipelines. They consist of different parts.
First part of the metal expansion joint is the metal bellow. The bellow is the body of the joint. Bellows can be made out of different metals. Second is a connector at both ends, this is usually a flange. Next is a tie rod. Choosing if a tie rod is needed, depends on the application. Also piping metal expansion joints are chosen according to the three basic types of movement: axial, angular and lateral. They also have usage in various sectors, like energy productions, paper industry, chemical industry, water treatment, oil and gas.
Metallic Expansion Joints
A metallic expansion joint by itself accommodates axial, longitudinal and angular movements in a pipelines, ducts and vessels. The addition of accessories to a metal expansion joint increases the complexity but also it’s capabilities. Some of the accessories for the expansion joints include, liners, weld ends, flanges, collars, hollow reinforcing rings, solid root rings, equalizing rings, control rods, limit rods, tie rods, pantographic linkages.
There are several types of metal expansion joints. Each type of expansion joints is designed to operate under a specific set of design conditions. Some of the most common types of expansion joints are, single expansion joint, double expansion joint, universal expansion joint, universal tied expansion joint, swing expansion joint, hinged expansion joint, gimbal expansion joint, pressure-balanced expansion joint
Single Metal Expansion Joints have one bellows. Axial compression and extension, lateral and angular movement can be accommodated. They do not restrain the internal pressure thrust. The piping designer must provide the system with separate anchoring and guiding to resist the pressure thrust. Where small thermal movements are involved and proper anchoring and guiding is feasible, a single metal expansion joint is the most economical installation.
Universal Metal Expansion Joints consist of two metal bellows separated by a pipe spool. This configuration accommodates large lateral movements, in addition to axial compression and extension and angular deflection. They have no restraints to resist pressure thrust and like the singles, the piping designer must provide separate anchoring to handle pressure thrust.
Exhaust bellows are also known as exhaust expansion joints or corrugated flexible pipe. Metal exhaust expansion joints are usually designed for high temperature.
Finally while choosing a metal expansion joint customer must know the following. The Size of the joint. Pressure at which the system operates. Temperature at which the system operates. Possible direction of deflection.
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