Ruptured Refinery Bellows – Failure Analysis

Ruptured Refinery Bellows

An engineer at a Texas Refinery was seriously burned when a thirty-nine inch expansion joint ruptured while workmen were performing temporary repairs. The ruptured bellows spilled hot catalyst from a fluidizer catalytic cracking unit on the deck – on which the engineer had to cross to reach safety.

We were asked to perform a failure analysis on the bellows. We determined that:

  1. The stainless steel had not been heat-treated properly
  2. The steel was sensitized during fabrication and made susceptible to corrosive attack


O’Donnell Consulting Engineers Performs Failure Analysis on Equipment including Bellows, Piping, Valves and Vessels.

(412) 835-5007

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