Reader Feedback

Review tank designs first I read PLANT ENGINEERING every month. There is always good information. However, as I read the May 2005 Solutions tip titled "Changing hoses and fittings" I was alarmed. Though your "Safety First..." disclaimer does generically cover most concerns with this idea, it does not cover the mechanical design of the tank to which someone might apply this tip.

07/01/2005


Review tank designs first

I read PLANT ENGINEERING every month. There is always good information. However, as I read the May 2005 Solutions tip titled "Changing hoses and fittings" I was alarmed. Though your "Safety First..." disclaimer does generically cover most concerns with this idea, it does not cover the mechanical design of the tank to which someone might apply this tip.

Tanks are designed with both internal and external forces in mind. So, when considering this tip, make sure your plant engineer has reviewed it in detail. Especially, the tank design for external pressure. When a vacuum pump is connected to a tank as described in the tip, the vacuum pump will create a lower pressure inside the tank than the atmospheric pressure acting on the outside of the tank.

I have witnessed a tank implosion (collapse) due to the principles of this tip. In the case I witnessed, the lower internal tank pressure was caused by a pump removing the liquid from the tank when the tank vent was not opened. As the liquid was removed, no air was allowed to fill the void. This caused a lower tank internal pressure than the outside atmospheric pressure, and the tank imploded.

The cost of replacing a tank will far exceed the time saved by improperly evaluating all potential hazards of any maintenance evolution. Even if the tank fluid is water, I would always recommend the proper Lock Out/Tag Out procedure, instead of this Tip.

Kenneth M. Smith

Plant Mechanical Engineer

Innovia Films, Inc.

Tecumseh, KS





No comments
The Top Plant program honors outstanding manufacturing facilities in North America. View the 2015 Top Plant.
The Product of the Year program recognizes products newly released in the manufacturing industries.
The Engineering Leaders Under 40 program identifies and gives recognition to young engineers who...
2016 Product of the Year; Diagnose bearing failures; Asset performance management; Testing dust collector performance measures
Safety for 18 years, warehouse maintenance tips, Ethernet and the IIoT, GAMS 2016 recap
2016 Engineering Leaders Under 40; Future vision: Where is manufacturing headed?; Electrical distribution, redefined
SCADA at the junction, Managing risk through maintenance, Moving at the speed of data
Safety at every angle, Big Data's impact on operations, bridging the skills gap
The digital oilfield: Utilizing Big Data can yield big savings; Virtualization a real solution; Tracking SIS performance
Applying network redundancy; Overcoming loop tuning challenges; PID control and networks
Driving motor efficiency; Preventing arc flash in mission critical facilities; Integrating alternative power and existing electrical systems
Package boilers; Natural gas infrared heating; Thermal treasure; Standby generation; Natural gas supports green efforts

Annual Salary Survey

Before the calendar turned, 2016 already had the makings of a pivotal year for manufacturing, and for the world.

There were the big events for the year, including the United States as Partner Country at Hannover Messe in April and the 2016 International Manufacturing Technology Show in Chicago in September. There's also the matter of the U.S. presidential elections in November, which promise to shape policy in manufacturing for years to come.

But the year started with global economic turmoil, as a slowdown in Chinese manufacturing triggered a worldwide stock hiccup that sent values plummeting. The continued plunge in world oil prices has resulted in a slowdown in exploration and, by extension, the manufacture of exploration equipment.

Read more: 2015 Salary Survey

Maintenance and reliability tips and best practices from the maintenance and reliability coaches at Allied Reliability Group.
The One Voice for Manufacturing blog reports on federal public policy issues impacting the manufacturing sector. One Voice is a joint effort by the National Tooling and Machining...
The Society for Maintenance and Reliability Professionals an organization devoted...
Join this ongoing discussion of machine guarding topics, including solutions assessments, regulatory compliance, gap analysis...
IMS Research, recently acquired by IHS Inc., is a leading independent supplier of market research and consultancy to the global electronics industry.
Maintenance is not optional in manufacturing. It’s a profit center, driving productivity and uptime while reducing overall repair costs.
The Lachance on CMMS blog is about current maintenance topics. Blogger Paul Lachance is president and chief technology officer for Smartware Group.
This article collection contains several articles on the vital role of plant safety and offers advice on best practices.
This article collection contains several articles on the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) and how it is transforming manufacturing.
This article collection contains several articles on strategic maintenance and understanding all the parts of your plant.
click me