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Temperature buffer for cryogenic vessels

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000235141D
Publication Date: 2014-Feb-26
Document File: 2 page(s) / 64K

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Temperature buffer for cryogenic vessels

1. Generalities

Main idea:

A pressure vessel is in steady state operation and contains gas at a uniform temperature. The wall of the vessel also has a uniform temperature not far away from the temperature of the gas contained in the vessel.

A high flow of gas suddenly enters the vessel at a temperature which is initially much below or much above the temperature of the gas in the vessel. In addition the temperature of the gas entering the vessel quickly fluctuates with time. 

This sudden entry of cold or heat can create locally high thermal stress due to significant gradient of temperature in the vessel wall. These high thermal stresses, when they are repeated, can create a failure of the pressure vessel due to fatigue.

Solution à "dampen" the temperature variations of the gas flowing in the vessel by putting on the gas flow a "temperature buffer" that will absorb or release heat to the gas.

2. Explanations

A "container" is installed inside the vessel. This container is filled with a material that has good heat conductivity and allows the gas to flow. Steel as well as other materials can be used for that purpose.

In steady state conditions, the "buffer" material has the same temperature as the gas inside the vessel.

The gas enters the vessel by a pipe, it flows through the buffer material. There is a heat exchange between the gas and the buffer material. The gas is heated or cooled depending on the temperature of the inlet gas vs. th...