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Engineering, United States

Palluzi R.,Research and Engineering Co.
Chemical Engineering Progress | Year: 2014

A guide to determine which piping, tubing, and fittings are optimal for a pilot plant application is discussed. The ideal piping for a pilot plant is leak resistant, easily modified, able to accommodate varying requirements, easy to install, low cost, offered in many different materials of construction, available in all sizes, and has fittings available in numerous configurations. It is good practice to ensure that the die the facility uses to cut threads into its pipes is sharp and in good condition; otherwise, the threads are likely to be rounded and more prone to leakage. The die should also be suitable for the materials of construction. Large pilot plants that can utilize welding should use raised-face flanges whenever possible, as they require less force to seal, have a longer service life, and are more resistant to leakage than flat-faced flanges. Tubing with compression fittings is usually a best practice for pilot-plant piping. The use of compression fittings imposes limitations on tubing hardness therefore, it is critical to specify tubing within the fittings' range. Operators must use vacuum fittings where frequent removal or cleaning is required, as their zero-clearance design makes layout and change out easier. An excellent detailed layout drawing by an experienced pilot plant designer might reduce space 25%.

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