Pressure Surge Analysis
Potential problems due to surge pressures
Leading surge software: BOSfluids
Dynaflow Research Group developed BOSfluids to solve water hammer and surge related problems. BOSfluids is an interactive computer simulation package that models steady state and transient flow in liquid or gas carrying piping systems. Our surge experts have more than 40 years of experience with these problems. This experience is incorporated in BOSfluids and we are continuously implementing our knowledge and experience into new versions of the software and training courses.
Surge analysis leads to a more economic system design
Performing a surge analysis is important to study the impact of transient changes of a system. For example, based on the Joukowsky equation, instantaneously stopping a water flow of 1 m/s will result in a surge pressure of 10 bar. Since the typical design flow velocities vary between 2 and 6 m/s, there is a significant surge potential of 20 to 60 bar (300 to 900 psi).
In many cases this calculation is too conservative; yet it is useful to depict the severity of the surge potential in this manner. However, using Joukowsky to design or verify a piping system often results in a system that is overdesigned, i.e. the supports and piping will be too strong and cost more than necessary.
A more realistic approach is found in a surge analysis study. The piping system is imported in BOSfluids that is used to analyze all relevant transient flow scenarios. The calculated surge pressures are lower than those found using Joukowsky since the transient actions (i.e. valves, pumps) are modelled in detail. Furthermore, the pressure surges will move through the pipeline resulting in more realistic unbalanced loads.
Mitigations to decrease pressure surges
Should the outcome of the surge analysis reveal potential risks to the operation of the system, DRG helps to develop measures to mitigate these risks. This in close cooperation with the clients to ensure safe operation of the respective piping system, using realistic and implementable measures to reduce the impact of pressure surge and water hammer to an acceptable level. The mitigations include the implementation of surge vessels, vacuum breakers, air valves, changing valve closure or opening times or even re-routing the piping layout. In close cooperation with the client, the mitigations will be evaluated within the time and cost constraints imposed.
Mechanical Response Studies
Our engineering consultants are not only experts on pressure surges but also on the mechanical aspects of the piping response to the transient loads. With our multidisciplinary approach DRG is a capable partner to help resolve any risks related to surge and water hammer in piping systems.
Read more on our mechanical consulting services here.
Besides consulting services, we also provide various training courses. Our Surge Analysis using BOSfluids Training Course gives clients a thorough basis on the theoretical matter of surge analysis and demonstrates how to perform these kinds of analyses using software programs like BOSfluids.
Our training courses are given as a class-room course or as on online course (live, self-paced or a combination). Combining a consulting question with training is also possible. This provides the client the opportunity to use BOSfluids for their own systems instead of using the standard training exercises.
For more on our training courses click here.