In engineering, it is common for structures to contract and expand, especially when exposed to high pressure and temperature. When temperature increases, particles within a structure expand, leading to a gradual increase in the size of the structure. The same happens when pressure is exerted on a structure. However, this expansion is dangerous and can lead to structural damages.
To avoid significant structural damages, bellows are used as expansion joints where expansion will take place. A metallic below will expand and contract when the structure is subjected to extreme pressure and temperatures. At no time will the original structure expand hence preventing any form of structural damages.
Bellows expansion joints are commonly used in most manufacturing plants and equipment hence preventing regular damages that occur due to increased temperature. Other large structures such as buildings and large moving machines have been shielding against natural forces such as earthquakes using metal bellows.
If you are looking for standard bellows, you will come across many of them in the market, which means that you are likely to get confused about which type of expansion joints work better. For instance, you will come across a rubber or stainless steel expansion joint. Over the last few years, stainless steel expansion joint has become highly preferred due to the following properties.
1. Made from Heavy Duty Metals
A stainless steel expansion joint is made using heavy-duty metals, which means that it can withstand very high temperatures and pressure before reaching the yield point. It is an alloy of nickel and titanium, which makes it one of the hardest expansion joints out there in the industry. Most of the engineers and structural experts using stainless steel bellows have the room of exposing their structure to any pressure or temperature without the fear that the expansion joint will be destroyed.
2. Flexible Range of Motion
Having a bellow that has a flexible range of motion is not a common characteristic. Most of the bellows are only restricted to a specific expansion level. This limits their usefulness and also eliminates any probability of them being used in high pressure and temperature. However, a stainless steel expansion joint uses its flexibility and varying range of motion to accommodate huge pressure and temperature. If you are looking for single expansion joints that can accommodate flexible motions, it would be important if you considered stainless steel joints.
3. Cannot Leak or Break
Stainless steel expansion joints are required to accommodate changing pressure and temperature without yielding. However, some of them, especially rubber joints, cannot handle very high pressure and temperature. They yield with ease, making them not suitable for high-end expansion joints. If you are looking for something that can accommodate increased pressure and temperature, you have no choice but to consider a stainless steel expansion joint. It will not leak or break.
4. Corrosion Resistant
Some stainless steel bellows and single expansion joints are used in conditions that are conducive for corrosion, especially moist and other environments that have additional impurities that support corrosion. They are likely to corrode with ease, which makes them vulnerable to leaks and breakages. Therefore, you need to make sure that you have an expansion joint that can resist or withstand corrosion.
Most stainless steel expansion joints contain molybdenum, which is an atomic element that has a melting point of more than 4,700 degrees Fahrenheit. Molybdenum makes this expansion joint to be Marine Grade hence resisting corrosiveness.
If you are looking for metallic bellows for your manufacturing plant, you can easily get metal bellows expansion joints that have been reinforced with stainless steel. You will never have to worry about increased temperature and pressure due to the high yield point demonstrated by these bellows.