You are on page 1of 15

Must have Load cases for stress analysis of a typical piping

system using Caesar II

The main objectives of stress analysis is to ensure
A. Structural Integrity (Design adequacy for the pressure of the carrying fluid, Failure against various
loading in the life cycle and Limiting stresses below code allowable.)
B. Operational Integrity (Limiting nozzle loads of the connected equipment within allowable values,
avoiding leakage at joints, Limiting sagging & displacement within allowable values.)
C. Optimal Design (Avoiding excessive flexibility and also high loads on supporting structures. Aim
towards an optimal design for both piping and structure.)
To meet these objectives several load cases are required during stress analysis. This article will guide all
the beginners with the methodology to build several load cases which will be required for stress analysis.
In this article we will use following notations for building load cases:
WW=water filled weight of piping system,
HP=Hydrotest Pressure,
W=weight of pipe including content and insulation,
P1=Internal Design pressure,
T1=Operating temperature,
T2=Maximum temperature,
T3= Minimum temperature,
WIN1, WIN2, WIN3 AND WIN4: wind loads acting in some specific direction,
U1, U2, U3 AND U4: uniform (seismic) loads acting in some specific direction.

While analysis at a minimum the stress check is required for the below mentioned cases:
a. Hydrotesting case: Pipelines are normally hydrotested before actual operation to ensure absence of
leakage. Water is used as the testing medium. So during this situation pipe will be subjected to water
weight and hydrotest pressure.
Accordingly our first load case in Caesar II will be as mentioned below



b. Operating case: When operation starts working fluid will flow through the piping at a temperature and
pressure. So accordingly our operating load cases will be as mentioned below:



for operating temperature case

for maximum system temperature case
for minimum system temperature case

c. Sustained Case: Sustained loads will exist throughout the plant operation. Weight and pressure are
known as sustained loads. So our sustained load case will be as follows:



d. Occasional Cases: Piping may be subjected to occassional wind and seismic forces. So to check
stresses in those situations we have to build the following load cases:



Considering wind from +X direction

Considering wind from -X direction
Considering wind from +Z direction
Considering wind from -Z direction
Considering seismic from +X direction
Considering seismic from -X direction
Considering seismic from +Z direction
Considering seismic from -Z direction

While stress analysis the above load cases form load case 6 to load case 13 is generated only to check
loads at node points.
To find occasional stresses we need to add pure occassional cases with sustained load and then
compare with code allowable values. Following sets of load cases are built for that purpose.
Pure wind from +X direction
Pure wind from -X direction
Pure wind from +Z direction
Pure wind from -Z direction
Pure seismic from +X direction
Pure seismic from -X direction
Pure seismic from +Z direction
Pure seismic from -Z direction
Pure wind+Sustained
Pure wind+Sustained
Pure wind+Sustained
Pure wind+Sustained
Pure seismic+Sustained
Pure seismic+Sustained
Pure seismic+Sustained
Pure seismic+Sustained

Load cases from 22 to 29 will be used for checking occasional stresses with respect to code B 31.3
allowable (=1.33 times Sh value from code). Use scalar combination for load cases 22 to 29 above and
algebraic combination for others as shown in figure attached below:

e. Expansion Case: Following load cases are required for checking expansion stress range as per code



for complete stress range

The above load cases (from 30 to 33) are used to check expansion stress
The above mentioned load cases are minimum required load cases to analysis any stress system. Out of
the above load cases the load cases mentioned in point number 1, 5, and 22-33 are used for stress
check. And load cases mentioned in point number 1 to 13 are used for checking restraint forces,
displacements and nozzle load checking.
Few additional load cases may be required for PSV connected systems, Rotary equipment connected

Seismic and Wind analysis may not be required every time. So those load cases can be deleted if the
piping system does not fall under the purview of seismic and wind analysis by project specification.
However to perform wind and seismic analysis proper related data must have to be entered in Caesar II
spreadsheet (Will be discussed in my future posts).
If the stress system involves use of imposed displacements (D) and forces (F) then those have to be
added with the above load cases in the form of D1, D2 or F1, F2 as applicable.
It is a better practice to keep
1. Hydro and sustained stresses below 60% of code allowable
2. Expansion and occasional stresses below 80% of code allowable
3. Sustained sagging below 10 mm for process lines and below 3 mm for steam, two phase and flare lines
4. Design/Maximum displacement below 75 mm for unit piping and below 200 mm in rack piping.

Technical and General requirements for Spring Hangers

while purchasing.
In all critical process and power plant units use of spring hangers is quite common. These are mostly
used near equipments to bring nozzle loads within vendor allowable values. Purchasing a spring hanger
must serve the appropriate function of carrying the loads within its working range without failure. To
maintain the quality of spring hangers the hangers must meet several technical and general requirements.
This article will mention about few such important points.
The following requirements at a minimum must be met by the vendor while delivering the spring hanger

Spring support mechanical design, material & fabrication shall be performed by the vendor
according to MSS SP 58 unless specified otherwise in this specification.

Spring support shall meet the requirements of the MSS SP 69, Pipe Hanger and SupportsSelection and Application, unless specified otherwise in this specification.

Spring support shall meet the requirements of the MSS SP 89, Pipe Hanger and Supports
Fabrication and Installation Practices, unless specified otherwise in this specification.

Spring support shall be supplied in line with the requirements specified in Datasheet.

Spring support assembly shall be designed to withstand 10000 plus load reversals at maintained

All parts of the spring support assembly shall be designed to withstand 2 times the operating load
or hydro test load, whichever is higher.

All alloy steel spring shall be shot-peened as per supplementary requirement S3 of ASTM A125.

All Hot wound alloy steel springs shall be examined by magnetic particle as per supplementary
requirement S2 of ASTM A125.

Spring shall have a surface protection coating suitable for saline coastal conditions e.g. plastic

Each spring support shall be factory pre-set and locked to the cold load given in

All spring supports shall be provided with a locking device (bolt & nut type) which must be
designed to re-lock the spring support at any load position within the range of the model.

All spring support shall be provided with means of positively and firmly locking the piston plate for
hydrostatic testing of the pipe.

All can type spring supports shall have Teflon pad on top slide plate of spring for temperature up
to 200C. The thickness of pads shall be minimum 10 mm for Teflon and 12.5 mm for graphite. It
shall be firmly secured by welding 50mm wide X 8 mm (10 mm in case of Graphite) stopper
plates to the load flange. Additional Teflon pad shall be glued with adhesive.

All spring shall be effectively enclosed in robust casing constructed of steel which is to be
provided with 50 X 50 mm opening at the lowest point in the casing to drain any rain water
or other garbage/ liquid which may enter.

For lifting large size spring support (with a dead weight of more than 50 Kg), lifting lugs shall be

All springs shall have an affixed load and travel plate on which hot and cold positions are clearly
marked. The position plate shall have an integral pointer to indicate the load on the spring at any
time. The load may be indicated by punching also.

Manufacturer shall submit spring support assembly drawing with hot load, cold load, spring
constant and all the dimensions in detail indicating overall length.

All spring support shall be delivered as a complete assembly, complete with blocking device

The Vendor shall comply with the inspection & testing requirements of MSS SP 58.

The Purchaser and Company reserve the right to carry out quality and technical review at both
Suppliers and Sub-Suppliers works including review of quality documentation.

Test reports for all mandatory (as well as supplementary, wherever specified) tests shall be

The supplier shall provide warranty for the material for eighteen (18) months from the date of
delivery or twelve month from the date of commissioning whichever is longer.

Material of springs shall meet the minimum requirements as mentioned in ASTM A125. Material of
construction shall be as follows.
1. Spring ASTM A689 (A 322 Gr. 6150 I Gr. 9260)
2. Turnbuckle A105 I A36
3. Plates/Flats A36
4. Rounds A36
5. Name Plate


6. Stud Bolts/Nuts

A193 B7 I A194 2H

7. Indicator Aluminium
8. Welding Electrodes

Painting and Coating

Spring housing shall be painted in accordance with approved specifications or standards. All threaded
components shall be hot dip galvanized as per ASTM A123.
The following additional information shall be legibly and conspicuously attached to the spring casing:

Project Name

Spring Support Tag

Vendors Model No.

Load Scale (N)

Travel Scale (mm)

Hot Load Position (Red indicator)

Cold Load Position (Green indicator)

Spring Rate

Documents to be submitted with tender:

1. Sketches/catalogues indicating selection criteria for spring model.
2. List of material for spring, housing and their painting/coating detail.
1. What is the main difference between Constant and Variable Spring Hanger? When to use
these hangers?
Ans: In Constant Spring hanger the load remains constant throughout its travel range. But In
variable spring hanger the load varies with displacement.
Spring hangers are used when thermal displacements are upwards and piping system is lifted off
from the support position. Variable spring hanger is preferable as this is less costly.
Constant springs are used:
a) When thermal displacement exceeds 50 mm
b) When variability exceeds 25%
c) Sometimes when piping is connected to strain sensitive equipment like steam turbines,
centrifugal compressors etc and it becomes very difficult to qualify nozzle loads by variable
spring hangers, constant spring hangers can be used.
2. What do you mean by variability? What is the industry approved limit for variability?
Ans: Variability= (Hot Load-Cold load)/Hot load= Spring Constant*displacement/Hot load.
Limit for variability for variable spring hangers is 25%.
3. What are the major parameters you must address while making a Spring Datasheet?

Ans: Major parameters are: Spring TAG, Cold load/Installed load, Vertical and horizontal
movement, Piping design temperature, Piping Material, Insulation thickness, Hydrotest load, Line
number etc.
spring hanger
5. How to calculate the height of a Variable Spring hanger?
Ans: Select the height from vendor catalogue based on spring size and stiffness class.
For base mounted variable spring hanger the height is mentioned directly. It is the spring height.
For top mounted variable spring hangers ass spring height with turnbuckle length, clamp/lug
length and rod length.
6. Can you select a proper Spring hanger if you do not make it program defined in your software?
What is the procedure?
Ans: In your system first decide the location where you want to install the spring. Then remove all
nearby supports which are not taking load in thermal operating case. Now run the program and
the sustained load on that support node is your hot load. The thermal movement in that location
is your thermal movement for your spring. Now assume a variability for your spring. So calculate
Spring constant=Hot load*variability/displacement. Now with spring constant and hot load enter
any vendor catalogue to select spring inside the travel range.
7. Why horizontal displacement is specified in datasheet? What will you do if the angle due to
displacement is more than 4 degree?
Ans: For bottom mounted springs it is mentioned to avoid large spring bending by frictional force
and displacement. So that additional measures can be taken to lower frictional force by providing
PTFE/graphite slide plate.

For top mounted spring hangers horizontal displacement is mentioned to check angularity of 4
degree to reduce transmission of horizontal force to piping systems as spring hangers are
designed to take the vertical load only.
If angle becomes more than 4 degree due to large horizontal movement then install the spring
hanger in a offset position so that after movement the angle becomes less than 4 degree.
8. Which spring will you select for your system: Spring with low stiffness or higher stiffness and
Ans: Springs with lower stiffness provides less load variation for same travel. So this spring is a
better choice than a spring hanger with higher stiffness.

Spring hanger selection and design guidelines for a Piping engineer

using Caesar II
Spring hangers are an integrated part of Piping Industry. The use of spring hangers for
supporting pipe weights are well-known to every piping engineer. Whenever some rigid supports
are not taking load due to its thermal movement or rigid supports are creating bad effect to
equipment connection Piping engineers suggest the use of a spring hanger to share some of the
loads and to keep the piping system safe. Selection of the appropriate type of hanger support for
any given application is governed by the individual piping configuration and job requirements.
There are two types of Spring hangers. a) Variable Spring Hanger- Loads vary throughout its
operating range and b) Constant Spring hanger: Load remains constant throughout its operating
The following write up will provide a simple guideline for selection of both Variable and constant
Spring hanger while analysing a piping system using Caesar II.
Selection Procedure of Variable Effort Springs:

1.Determine the hot load required and the pipe movement (up or down).
2.Estimate the travel range from the catalogue.
3.Select the smallest spring size which has the hot load within the working travel (mid range).
4.Ensure that the cold load lies within the working range of the spring i.e. between the two dark black
lines shown in the selection chart.
Calculate the cold load as follows:
Cold Load = Operating Load + Movement x Spring Rate (For pipe movement up)
Cold Load = Operating Load Movement x Spring Rate (For pipe movement down)
5.If the Cold load lies beyond the working range in the selection chart, then select higher spring size
or the next travel range.
6. Check the variability in selected spring

Generally for non-critical systems, the variability is limited to 25% throughout the total travel. For critical
systems such as steam connections terminating at turbines and pipes connected to rotating equipment
Like compressor etc. variability is limited to 10%.If the variation exceeds the allowed value, choose higher
size spring or smaller spring rate at same load range.
7. Select the type and check the feasibility of the spring depending on space available and type of
structure available.

Selection procedure of Constant effort springs:

Constant Effort spring shall be selected where the vertical movement exceeds 50 mm, or where it is
necessary to restrict transfer of load to adjacent terminal of equipment or where the spring variability
exceeds 25%.


Determine the load and the total movement.

Total movement = design movement + over travel
Over travel = 20% of the design movement or 25mm whichever is higher.
2. Select the spring from the load chart keeping in mind that the spring selected must lie within the
working range (Between red and black line)
3. Select the type and check the feasibility of the spring depending on space available and type of
structure available.
4. The Spring box must be able to move freely without any restriction.
5. Stress Engineer must check the eccentricity (See Fig 1 below) of the spring load flange and the spring
base plate while providing foundation information to civil.

Spring Selection procedure in Caesar II:

1. CAESAR-II Default Setting for Hanger Selection:

Before making input for spring selection it is always better to make a default Caesar setting for hanger

Fig 2. Caesar II Default hanger setting

2. CAESAR-II Auxiliary Spreadsheet setting for Hanger Selection
During spring selection at a particular node the following auxiliary spreadsheet appears. The setting of
this spreadsheet is to be done as illustrated in below diagram.

Fig. 3 Caesar II Auxiliary spreadsheet for hanger selection

NOTE-1: Maximum Allowed Travel Limit:
This field is used to specify a limit on the amount of travel a variable support hanger may undergo.
CAESAR will be forced to select a Constant Effort Spring if the movement exceeds the limit in this field,
even though a variable effort spring would have fulfilled our purpose.
Constant effort hangers can be designed forcefully by inputting a very small number i.e. 0.001 in this field.
NOTE-2: Free Code:
Anchor or Restraints from equipment connections which are very near to the hangers are usually freed
during the hanger design restrained weight run, so that loads normally going to the equipment nozzle are
carried by the hanger.
The hanger can be designed to take almost the full weight of the pipe between the anchor and the hanger
Using this field enter the node number & the direction in which free code is to be used.
Free Codes are:1.Free the anchor or restraint in the Y direction only.
2.Free the anchor or restraint in the Y and X directions only.
3.Free the anchor or restraint in the Y and Z directions only.
4.Free all translational degrees of freedom for the anchor or restraint. (X,Y and Z)
5.Free all translational and rotational degrees of freedom for the anchor or restraint. (X, Y, Z, RX, RY, and
RZ).Refer Figure below.

The option 5 above usually results in the highest adjacent hanger loads, but should only be used when
the horizontal distance between the hanger and the anchor is within about 4 pipe diameters as shown in
Fig 4

Fig. 4 Maximum Spring distance for using Free Code

NOTE-3: Number of hangers at location:
For better stability, the base type spring support of 24 and larger is used with 2 spring cans.
Few important points to keep in mind while Spring selection:

For can type springs the spring height should be kept minimum from stability point of view. If
spring height is less the moment on spring will reduce and tilting of spring (Fig. 5) can be avoided
or significantly minimized.

The spring which has lower spring rate will have lower load variation.

While designing the spring hanger the sustained sagging should be minimized within +/-1 mm so
that original piping system is not strained much.