A piping system conveys fluid from one location to another. Within
a process plant, the locations are typically one or more equipment
items (e.g., pumps, pressure vessels, heat exchangers, process
heaters, etc.), or individual process plants that are within the
boundary of a process facility.

OVERVIEW OF PROCESS PLANT PIPING SYSTEM DESIGN

Carmagen Engineering, Inc.

I. INTRODUCTION

This course provides an overview of process plant piping system design. It
discusses requirements contained in ASME B31.3, Process Piping, plus
additional requirements and guidelines based on common industry practice. The
information contained in this course is readily applicable to on-the-job
applications, and prepares participants to take more extensive courses if
appropriate.

II. GENERAL

A. What is a piping system

A piping system conveys fluid from one location to another. Within
a process plant, the locations are typically one or more equipment
items (e.g., pumps, pressure vessels, heat exchangers, process
heaters, etc.), or individual process plants that are within the
boundary of a process facility.

A piping system consists of:

Pipe sections

Fittings (e.g., elbows, reducers, branch connections, etc.)

Flanges, gaskets, and bolting

Valves

Pipe supports and restraints

Each individual component plus the overall system must be

designed for the specified design conditions.

B. Scope of ASME B31.3

ASME B31.3 specifies the design, materials, fabrication, erection,
inspection, and testing requirements for process plant piping
systems. Process plants include petroleum refineries; chemical,
pharmaceutical, textile, paper, semiconductor, and cryogenic
plants; and related process plants and terminals.

ASME B31.3 applies to piping and piping components that are used
for all fluid services, not just hydrocarbon services. These include
the following:

Raw, intermediate, and finished chemicals.

Petroleum products.

Gas, steam, air, and water.

Fluidized solids.

Refrigerants.

Cryogenic fluids.

The scope also includes piping that interconnects pieces or stages
within a packaged-equipment assembly.

The following are excluded from the scope of ASME B31.3:

Piping systems for internal gauge pressures at or above zero
but less than 15 psi, provided that the fluid is nonflammable,
nontoxic, and not damaging to human tissue, and its design
temperature is from -20°F through 366°F.

Power boilers that are designed in accordance with the ASME
Boiler and Pressure Vessel Code Section I and external boiler
piping that must conform to ASME B31.1.

Tubes, tube headers, crossovers, and manifolds that are
located inside a fired heater enclosure.

Pressure vessels, heat exchangers, pumps, compressors, and
other fluid-handling or processing equipment. This includes
both internal piping and connections for external piping.

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