U.S. Bellows, Inc. has adopted and encourages the use of the definitions of pipe expansion joint components and related equipment as published by The Expansion Joint Manufacturers Association. The definitions are taken, in part, from the Ninth Edition of the EJMA Standards
- Accumulation Barrier
- Angular Rotation
- Axial Compression
- Axial Extension
- Anchor, Directional
- Anchor, Intermediate
- Back-Up Bars
- Belt Attachment Flange
- Clamp Bars
- Cold Shell
- Control Rods
- Clamp Bars
- Double Pipe Expansion Joint
- Equalizing and Reinforcing Rings
- Face to Face
- Fabric Expansion Joint
- Fabric Belt
- Flanged Ends
- Gimbal Pipe Expansion Joints
- Heat Seal Splice
- Hot Shell
- Hinged Pipe Expansion Joint
- Inboard Flange
- In-Line Pressure Balanced Pipe Expansion Joint
- Inside Replaceable
- Internal Liner
- Internally Guided Pipe Expansion Joint
- Insulation Pillow
- Lateral Deflection
- Limit Rods
- Mating Flange
- Motion Indicators
- Outboard Flange
- Pantograph Linkages
- Pipe Alignment Guide
- Pipe Expansion Joint
- Pipe Section
- Planar Pipe Guide
- Pressure Balanced Pipe Expansion Joints
- Purge Connections
- Radius Corner
- Rated Movement
- Shipping Devices
- Single Pipe Expansion Joint
- Swing Pipe Expansion Joint
- Tie Rods
- Universal Pipe Expansion Joint
- Weld Ends
Angular Rotation. The displacement of the longitudinal axis of the pipe expansion joint from its initial straight line position into a circular arc. Angular rotation is occasionally referred to as “rotational movement.” This is not torsional rotation.Axial Compression The dimensional shortening of a pipe expansion joint along its longitudinal axis. Axial compression has been referred to as axial movement, traverse or compression. Learn more.
Axial Extension The dimensional lengthening of a pipe expansion joint along its longitudinal axis. Axial extension has been referred to as axial movement, traverse or compression. Learn more.
Anchor, Directional A directional or sliding anchor, is one which is designed to absorb loading in one direction while permitting motion in another. It may be either a main or intermediate anchor, depending upon the application involved. When designed for this purpose, a directional anchor may also function as a pipe alignment guide. In the design of a directional anchor, an effort should be made to minimize the friction between it’s moving or sliding parts since this will reduce the loading on the piping and equipment and ensure the proper functioning of the anchor.
Anchor, Main A main anchor is one which must withstand the full bellows thrust due to pressure flow, spring forces, etc.
Anchor, Intermediate An Intermediate anchor is one which must withstand the bellows thrust due to flow, spring forces etc, but not the thrust due to pressure.
Back-Up Bars: Metal bars with fastener holes used for clamping along the edges of the fabric gas seal to the belt attachment flange.
Bellows The flexible element of a pipe expansion joint consisting of one or more convolutions and the end tangents, if any. Learn more.
Belt Attachment Flange: The face of the expansion joint where the belt is clamped using a back-up bar. The flange can be turned out (see Outboard Flange) or turned in (see Inboard Flange). Either way, many designs allow for the belt attachment flange to be offset from the duct (see Standoff).
Breach: The opening in the duct where the expansion joint is installed.
Cold Shell: A duct that is internally insulated with refractory material.
Control Rod Devices, usually in the form of rods or bars, attached to the pipe expansion joint assembly whose primary function is to distribute movement between the two bellows of a universal pipe expansion joint. Control rods are not designed to restrain pressure thrusts.
Convolution. The smallest flexible unit of a bellows. The total movement capacity of a bellows is proportional to the number of convolutions.
Double Pipe Expansion Joint A double pipe expansion joint consists of two bellows joined by a common connector which is anchored to some rigid part on the installation by means of an anchor base. The anchor base may be attached to the common connector either at installation or at time of manufacture. Each bellows acts as a single pipe expansion joint and absorbs the movement of the pipe section in which it is installed, independently of the other bellows. Double pipe expansion joints should not be confused with universal pipe expansion joints.
Equalizing and Reinforcing Rings. Devices used on some pipe expansion joints fitting snugly in the roots of the convolutions. The primary purpose of these devices is to reinforce the bellows against internal pressure. Equalizing rings are made of cast iron, carbon steel, stainless steel or other suitable alloys and are approximately “T” shaped in cross section. Reinforcing rings are fabricated from tubing or solid round bars of carbon steel, stainless steel, or other suitable alloys.
Pipe Expansion Joints Any device containing one or more bellows used to absorb dimensional changes, such as those caused by thermal expansion or contraction of a pipeline, duct, or vessel. Learn more.
Fabric Belt: The flexible non-porous element of a fabric expansion joint. The fabric belt must be able to withstand the thermal, pressure and chemical conditions. Modern fabrics accomplish this with a chemically inert barrier bonded to high strength substrate. For high-temperature applications, a layer of insulation is incorporated into the belt.
Fabric Expansion Joint: An assembly that utilizes a fabric belt element to allow for the movement of ductwork, as opposed to a metal expansion joint which allows for the movement by means of convoluted metal bellows.
Fabric Over Metal: A design that allows for a fabric expansion joint to be installed over a metal expansion joint.
Flanged Ends The ends of a pipe expansion joint equipped with flanges for the purpose of bolting the pipe expansion joint to the mating flanges of adjacent equipment or piping. Learn more.
Flutter: The phenomenon that can occur in the fabric material due to the turbulence of the gas flow. Flutter can occur in locations where pressure fluctuations occurs, such as near dampers and fans. Intense flexing of the fabric could lead to premature failure, thus the use of liners, fillers, or heavier fabric is recommended.
Gasket: A non-porous deformable material that is installed between the belt attachment flange and the fabric belt. The gasket allows a gas-tight seal when the back-up bar clamping action is applied.
Gimbal Pipe Expansion Joints A gimbal pipe expansion joint is designed to permit angular rotation in any plane by the use of two pairs of hinges affixed to a common floating gimbal ring. The gimbal ring, hinges, and pins must be designed to restrain the thrust of the pipe expansion joint due to internal pressure and extraneous forces, where applicable. Learn more.
Shipping 128″ x 229″ Rectangular Fabric Pipe Expansion Joints
Heat Seal Splice: For Fluoroplastic material, a process of splicing or repairing the fabric material with means of a special iron and a film of PTFE sheet.
Hinged Pipe Expansion Joint A hinged pipe expansion joint contains one bellows and is designed to permit angular rotation in one plane only, by the use of a pair of pins through hinge plates attached to the pipe expansion joint ends. The hinges and hinge pins must be designed to restrain the thrust of the pipe expansion joint due to internal pressure and extraneous forces, where applicable. Hinged pipe expansion joints should be used in sets of two or three to function properly. Learn More.
Hot Shell: A duct that is externally insulated.
Inboard Flange: A design where the inside of the belt attachment flange is not accessible from outside the expansion joint.
ID: Inside Duct Dimension.
In-Line Pressure Balanced Pipe Expansion Joint An in-line pressure balanced pipe expansion joint is designed to absorb axial movement and/or lateral deflection which is restraining the pressure thrust by means of tie devices interconnecting the line bellows with outboard compensating bellows also subjected to line pressure. Each bellow set is designed to absorb the axial movement and usually, the line bellows will absorb the lateral deflection. This type of pipe expansion joint is used in a straight run of piping. Learn more.
Inside Replaceable: The expansion joint design that allows the belt to be installed and replaced from the outside of the expansion joint.
Insulation Pillow: In applications where the gas stream temperature is greater than the fabric belt alone can withstand, an insulation pillow can be installed, usually by pinning to telescoping liners. An insulation pillow is constructed of high-density material wrapped in cloth with wire mesh reinforcement.
Insulation Tape: A thin layer of insulating material, usually woven fiberglass, that is installed between the belt attachment flange and the fabric belt. In certain cases, insulation tape is also used between the fabric belt and the back-up bar. The purpose of the tape is to prevent the conduction of high temperatures to the fabric material where it is clamped.
Internal Liner A device that minimizes contact between the inner surface of the bellows of a pipe expansion joint and the fluid flowing through it. These devices have also been referred to as liners, telescoping sleeves, etc. Learn more.
Internally Guided Pipe Expansion Joint An internally guided pipe expansion joint is designed to provide axial guiding within the pipe expansion joint by incorporating a heavy internal guide sleeve, with or without the use of bearing rings. The use of such pipe expansion joints will assure installation without initial lateral or angular misalignment and can be installed in pipelines where the reverse flow will be encountered. NOTE: The use of an internally guided pipe expansion joint does not eliminate the necessity of using adequate external pipe guides.
Lateral Deflection The relative displacement of the two ends of a pipe expansion joint perpendicular to its longitudinal axis. This has been referred to as lateral offset, lateral movement, parallel misalignment, direct shear or traverse movement.
Liner: The liner is a metal plate or plates that are designed to protect the fabric belt from the gas stream while at the same time allowing the expansion joint movement. The liner can be bolted, welded, floating, or integral to the standoff frame. A single liner is connected to the upstream side of the expansion joint. In some cases, a second “telescoping” liner is used on the downstream side.
Limit Rods Devices, usually in the form of rods or bars, attached to the pipe expansion joint assembly whose primary function is to restrict the bellows movement range (axial, lateral and angular) during normal operation. They are designed to prevent over-extension or over-compression of the bellows while restraining the full pressure loading and dynamic forces generated by the main anchor failure. Learn more.
Mating Flange: A structural angle or channel that is welded to the end of the ducting facilitate bolting or welding the expansion joint into the system.
Motion Indicators Devices, usually in the form of rods or bars, attached to the pipe expansion joint assembly whose primary function is to restrict the bellows movement range (axial, lateral and angular) during normal operation. They are designed to prevent over-extension or over-compression of the bellows while restraining the full pressure loading and dynamic forces generated by the main anchor failure. Another common example of motion indicators is found on slotted hinge assemblies. With the hinge pin used as an indicator, permanent marks are scribed upon the hinge hardware to record the original cold position. The relative distance between the pin and the cold position mark can then be used to determine the movements imposed upon the bellows.
Outboard Flange: A design where the inside of the belt attachment flange is accessible from the outside of the expansion joint.
Pantograph Linkages A scissor-like device. A special form of control rod attached to the pipe expansion joint assembly whose primary function is to positively distribute the movement equally between the two bellows of the universal joint throughout its full range of movement. Pantograph linkages, like control rods, are not designed to restrain pressure thrusts.
Pipe Alignment Guide A pipe alignment guide is a form of framework fastened to some rigid part of the installation which permits the pipeline to move freely along the axis of the pipe. Pipe alignment guides are designed primarily for use in applications involving lateral deflection and angular rotation.
Pipe Section A pipe section is that portion of a pipeline between two anchors. All dimensional changes in a pipe section must be absorbed between these two anchors.
Planar Pipe Guide A planar pipe guide is one that permits transverse movement and/or bending of the pipeline in one plane. It is commonly used in applications involving lateral deflection or angular rotation resulting from “L” or “Z” shaped piping configurations.
Pressure Balanced Pipe Expansion Joint A pressure balanced expansion pipe joint is designed to absorb axial movement and/or lateral deflection while restraining the pressure thrust by means of tie devices interconnecting the flow bellows with an opposed bellows also subjected to line pressure. This type of pipe expansion joint is normally used where a change of direction occurs in a run of piping but can be designed as an in-line device where no change of direction is necessary. The flow end of a pressure balanced pipe expansion joint sometimes contains two bellows separated by a common connector, in which case it is called a universal pressure balanced pipe expansion joint. Learn More
Purge Connections Purge connections, where required, are usually installed at the sealed end of each internal sleeve of a pipe expansion joint for the purpose of injecting a liquid or gas between the bellows and the internal sleeve to keep the area clear of erosive and corrosive media and/or solids that could pack the convolutions. Purging may be continuous, intermittent or just on start-up or shut down, as required. These are sometimes called aeration connections. Learn more.
Radius Corner: The belt radius at the corner of rectangular expansion joints. The radius corner helps prevent sharp creases that may shorten belt life.
Rated Movement The maximum amount of movement (axial extension, axial compression, lateral deflection, angular rotation, or any combination thereof) which a pipe expansion joint is capable of absorbing. This rating may be different for each size, type and making of pipe expansion joint and is established by the manufacturer.
Shiping Devices Rigid support devices installed on a pipe expansion joint to maintain the overall length of the assembly for shipment. These devices may also be used to pre-compress, pre-extend or laterally offset the bellows.
Single Pipe Expansion Joint The simplest form of pipe expansion joint, of single bellows construction, designed to absorb all of the movements of the pipe section in which it is installed. Learn more.
Standoff: The distance of the fabric belt from the gas stream. The proper standoff allows belt cooling in high-temperature applications and prevents the belt from being pulled into the gas stream in negative pressure.
Swing Pipe Expansion Joint A swing pipe expansion joint is designed to absorb lateral deflection and/or angular rotation in one plane. Pressure thrust and extraneous forces are restrained by the use of a pair of swing bars, each of which is pinned to the pipe expansion joint ends.
Tangents The straight unconvoluted portions at the ends of the bellows.
Tie Rods Devices, usually in the form of rods or bars, attached to the pipe expansion joint assembly whose primary function is to continuously restrain the full pressure thrust during normal operation while permitting only lateral deflection. Angular rotation can be accommodated only if two tie rods are used and located 90 degrees as opposed to the direction of rotation.
Universal Pipe Expansion Joint A universal pipe expansion joint is one containing two bellows joined by a common connector for the purpose of absorbing any combination of the three basic movements, i.e. axial movements, lateral deflection, and angular rotation. Universal pipe expansion joints are usually furnished with control rods to distribute the movement between the two bellows of the pipe expansion joint and stabilize the common connector. This definition does not imply that only a universal pipe expansion joint can absorb combined movements. Learn more.
Vulcanize: A process of heating and adding sulfur to an elastomeric material. Vulcanizing is required in the manufacturing and splicing of elastomers.
Weld Ends The ends of a pipe expansion joint equipped with pipe suitably beveled for welding to adjacent equipment or piping.
Flanged Ends of an 18″ Single Metallic Pipe Expansion Joint