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Pipe Stress and Strain: How To Optimize Your Designs

Cloud-based simulation to test, validate, and optimize designs iteratively and easily

Pipes are vital components to machines, systems, and infrastructure across the globe. From domestic plumbing, to agricultural irrigation, to the oil and gas industry, pipes are the connectors between vital resources and customers. With some subsea natural gas pipelines running close to 900 km along the ocean floor, transportation of substances via pipelines needs to be safe and consistent. To ensure reliability and performance, computer-aided engineering is often employed to simulate and test stresses on pipes and associated fixtures and fittings.

image of industrial pipes

Typical Pipe Applications

The most common use for pipes is for fluid conveyance. However pipes are also used for moving gaseous, solid, and semi-solid substances. Pipes vary in size, shape, and material depending on what they are transporting, the temperatures they need to withstand, and the conditions in which they will operate.

Pipes and pipework are used in industries such as:

  • Potable water supply
  • Plumbing, wastewater, and drainage
  • Agriculture
  • Food and beverage
  • Oil and gas
  • Heating and cooling systems

Why Is Online Simulation with SimScale Needed for Pipe Applications?

Pipes need to allow flow while withstanding temperature and pressure changes to avoid damage or leakage. With computer-aided engineering, material selection, placement, joints, bonding, and fixtures can all be analyzed to see how they will react to external forces. The various stresses and strains can be simulated to ensure the pipe will adequately serve its purpose.

Thanks to the power of the cloud, SimScale has eliminated the high cost of hardware and steep learning curves required by traditional, on-premises tools. With SimScale, engineers can:

  • Run multiple simulations in parallel for faster design optimization
  • Get started quickly with an easy-to-learn interface
  • Avoid manual updates, installation, or maintenance
  • Simulate other CFDFEA, or thermal applications

Want to run a pipe analysis of your own?


Thermal Structural Analysis of a Cracked Pipe

A cracked pipe can lead to leaks and losses. Pipes must be durable and be able to tolerate great stresses in order to avoid cracks from occurring. This public project analyzes the effect of a crack in a pipe, looking at the thermostructural properties.


Analysis of Pipe Elbow Joint

Joints in pipes come under a lot of stress and strain. This project shows a stress analysis of a pipe elbow to identify whether it can withstand pressure on its flanges as well as pressure from fluid inside. Explore it here.

pipe bending stress and strain

Bending of an Aluminium Pipe Simulation with FEA (Nonlinear)

This project shows the bending of an aluminium pipe through rolling process. Copy this project to run your own pipe bending simulation today!


ElastoPlastic Analysis of an Oil Pipe

In the case where pressure control systems have failed, the risk of blowouts rises, where pressure peaks cause major damage. This nonlinear FEA shows how blowouts can lead to displacement and deformation in elastoplastic material.