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Piping insulation: Important Considerations


for Piping Engineer
2 5th June 2 01 4

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insulation

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Why Insulation?:
An insulation sy stem serv es three principal purposes:

the significant reduction in heat transfer of thermal


energy to and from the surface of the piping sy stem
(Heat Conserv ation).
the prev ention of moisture formation and collection
on the surface of the piping sy stem due to
condensation (Cold Insulation).

the prev ention of potentially injurious personnel


contact with the surface of the ex posed piping sy stem
(Personal Protection).
sometimes Steam traced/Electric traced insulation, Regeneration insulation, jacketting etc are used as
per process / liscensor requirement.
Fire proofing, fire protection and acoustic insulation (to absorb v ibration) is prov ided based on project
specification/ ITB requirement.

Insulation Material:

Low temperature insulation is frequently made of ex panded cellular plastic or foam rubber material.
Moderate temperature insulations are made from grass fibre products.
High temperature insulation is made of preformed cementations or refractory materials or blankets
made from ceramic fibres.
Insulation and accessory materials has to be 1 00% asbestos free.
Normally mineral fibre, cellular glass, ceramic fibre, glass fibre, poly isocy anurate, poly urethane foam
etc are used as insulation material.

Few important points related to insulation (May v ary from project to project):

Hot insulation or Heat conserv ation insulation is used when normal operating temperature ex ceeds 65
degree centigrade unless heat loss is desirable. (Control process temperature)
Personnel protection is used in accessible areas if temperature ex ceeds 65 degree centigrade.
Steam traced, electric traced, jacketting etc are used for process temperature control.
Insulation thickness is determined based on pipe size, normal operating temperature, temperature
controlling requirement (ex tent of heat loss/gain) etc. At a minimum 25 mm thickness is used.
If insulation thickness is more than 7 5 mm then insulation is prov ided in two or more lay ers (multi
lay er).
Insulation shall not be applied untill hy drostatic/ pneumatic testing.
Insulation upto 1 2 inch NPS pipe shall be held with ss 304 tie wire and for >1 2 inch NPS ss 304 bands are
used.
All flanges will be insulated other than hy drogen serv ice or high health hazard material serv ices.

All v alv es other than control v alv es and relief v alv es shall be insulated.

Note: Please prov ide y our input in Comments section. Will be updated when more information is av ailable.

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