Steam Pipe Sizing Guide – Tech Tip 46

Steam Pipe Sizing Guide
  • Did you realize that steam travels at speeds around 82 mph in the average industrial plant piping system?
  • Did you realize that if you size your steam piping in an office area like the industrial plants, you would have some very upset secretaries complaining about noise? To keep the velocity noise to an acceptable level in a institutional or school setting steam supply piping is generally sized at about 80 ft/sec or 55 mph.
  • Did you realize that changing the operating pressure of a steam boiler from a engineering design of 125 psi to say 20 psi changes the steam exit velocity from 2850 feet per minute (47.5 ft per sec) to over 11,000 feet per minute (183 ft per sec)……talk about wet steam, the “carryover” of water with the steam at the lower operating pressure will cause major problems all throughout the system. We can help you with your steam system questions.
  • Did you realize the pipe size and layout is extremely important at the boiler steam supply outlet nozzle. Boiler manufacturers use very specific criteria to size the supply nozzle based on the capacity and operating pressure. The steam velocity at the nozzle must be kept between the 50-80 ft/sec to maintain dry steam.

Remember, if the question is about steam….Call the steam experts in Oklahoma for over 100 years, Federal Corporation.

ADVANCED TECHTIPS…..Look over the following information from the leaders in steam system components, Spirax Sarco.