An engineer was seriously burned when a thirty-nine inch expansion joint ruptured while workman were performing temporary repairs at a Texas refinery. 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


We perform failure analysis on equipment including bellows, piping, valves and vessels.

Give us a call to discuss your engineering challenges.

Related Projects

Stress, Vibration and Fatigue Analysis of Bellows
Engineering Analysis of Design Errors in Electrostatic Precipitator

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Tom O’Donnell, PE
Murals of Projects

(412) 835-5007

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