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Doc. No.

CR-COR-ENG_PRC-008-E
CORPORATE CRITERIA
Rev. 01 Date 08/11/13
ACOUSTIC FATIGUE – PROCESS CHECK

Page 1 of 10

CORPORATE CRITERIA

ACOUSTIC FATIGUE – PROCESS CHECK

CR-COR-ENG_PRC-008-E

08/11/13 01 First issue S. Ingrosso G. Poni A. Cipelli


OILGAS PROTEC ENG

Date Revision Description of Revision Prepared Checked Approved

This document is property of Saipem S.p.A. All rights reserved


Doc. No. CR-COR-ENG_PRC-008-E
CORPORATE CRITERIA
Rev. 01 Date 08/11/13
ACOUSTIC FATIGUE – PROCESS CHECK

Page 2 of 10

Revisions Summary

08/11/13 01 First issue S. Ingrosso G. Poni A. Cipelli


OILGAS PROTEC ENG

Date Revision Description of Revision Prepared Checked Approved


Doc. No. CR-COR-ENG_PRC-008-E
CORPORATE CRITERIA
Rev. 01 Date 08/11/13
ACOUSTIC FATIGUE – PROCESS CHECK

Page 3 of 10

INDEX

1 SCOPE AND PURPOSE 4


1.1 OBJECTIVE 4
2 REFERENCE DOCUMENTS 4
2.1 RECOMMENDED PRACTICES AND CRITERIA 4
2.2 SAIPEM REFERENCES 4
3 DEFINITIONS 4
3.1 TERMS 4
3.2 ACRONYMS 4
3.3 SYMBOLS 4
4 DESCRIPTION OF ACTIVITIES 5
4.1 INTRODUCTION 5
4.2 ASSUMPTIONS 5
4.3 PRELIMINARY PROCESS SCREENING 6
4.4 SOUND POWER LEVEL GENERATED AT THE SOURCE 6
4.4.1 Combined power level from multiple sources 7
4.5 ALLOWABLE POWER SOUND LEVEL 8
4.6 AF PROCESS CHECK RESULTS 9
4.7 IMPROVING ACTIONS REGARDING THE PROCESS AREA 10
4.8 PWL METHOD ATTENUATIONS 10
Doc. No. CR-COR-ENG_PRC-008-E
CORPORATE CRITERIA
Rev. 01 Date 08/11/13
ACOUSTIC FATIGUE – PROCESS CHECK

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1 SCOPE AND PURPOSE


The purpose of this Corporate Criterion is to define the checks and calculations to evaluate the acoustic
fatigue by process function.
This Corporate Criterion applies to the engineering and construction projects of interest of the Saipem
Group.
1.1 OBJECTIVE
The aim of this document is to define the checks of the process function and the calculations, starting from
process data only, to be carried out to preliminary evaluate if acoustic fatigue can be an issue in a pipe
downstream a pressure reducer device. The scope of this screening is to define the lines to be submitted to
further detailed investigation. Moreover, a list of possible process improving actions are described in order to
mitigate acoustic fatigue issue.
Description of mechanical checks, calculations and solutions is not in the scope of this document.
In cases where the contract specifies that Client design criteria have to be applied, Saipem design rules
should be considered only as a reference.

2 REFERENCE DOCUMENTS

2.1 RECOMMENDED PRACTICES AND CRITERIA


Energy Institute Guidelines for the avoidance of Vibration Induced Fatigue failure in process
Pipework – 2nd edition 2008

2.2 SAIPEM REFERENCES


CR-COR-ENG_PRC-004 PSV Selection and Orifice Preliminary Calculation
CR-COR-ENG_PRC-005 Control Valve Process Sizing
WI-SPA-ENGON-010-E Layout & Piping Engineering Assessment of Acoustic Fatigue Phenomena on
Piping Circuit

3 DEFINITIONS
3.1 TERMS
Pressure Reducing Generic term applied to Pressure Safety Valve, Control Valve, Restriction
Device Orifice

3.2 ACRONYMS
AF Acoustic Fatigue
BDV Blowdown Valve
CV Control Valve
DN Nominal Diameter
LOF Likelihood of Failure
PSV Pressure Safety Valve
PWL Sound power level
RO Restriction Orifice
SBC Small Bore Connection

3.3 SYMBOLS
Symbol Definition Unit of measure
D Nominal line diameter mm
M1 Molecular weight at upstream device kg/kmole
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CORPORATE CRITERIA
Rev. 01 Date 08/11/13
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condition
P1 Pressure upstream device bar abs
P2 Pressure downstream device bar abs
P Differential pressure upstream / downstream bar
device
t Pipe thickness mm
T1 Absolute temperature at inlet device K
v Fluid velocity m/s
W Mass flow rate of discharged fluid kg/h

Greek letters
Symbol Definition Unit of measure
 Density downstream device kg/m3

4 DESCRIPTION OF ACTIVITIES
4.1 INTRODUCTION
When a pressure reducer device, such as PSVs, control valves and restriction orifice, is sized, check of
acoustic fatigue should be done in order to define critical circuits which require further detailed investigation
from a mechanical point of view. Acoustic energy generated downstream pressure reducing systems can
result in severe piping system vibration and it is not to be confused with noise. In extreme cases, this
vibration could cause piping component fatigue failure. For this reason, the acoustic fatigue should be
checked. The overall approach used for evaluating the possibility to have fatigue problems is to identify
potentially critical systems by calculation of the Sound Power Level and then determine the appropriate
remedy.
The PWL check has to be carried out in sequence and by different engineering functions because requiring
different competence and data:
1. Process checks, based on process data, pipe diameter and thickness.
2. Detailed checks by other engineering functions, based on valve and piping technical data.
Hereafter the first process checks phase is reported and it is divided in:
 Preliminary process screening;
 Sound Power Level approach – process check.
Each piping system should be evaluated individually and suitable modifications should be developed, as
required, based on the particular system requirements and limitations.
PSVs, CVs and ROs are pressure reducer devices which create discontinuities in the flow path and can
induce acoustic fatigue phenomena caused, for example, by vortex shedding. They are critical points if the
pressure drop between upstream and downstream is too high.
4.2 ASSUMPTIONS
Acoustic fatigue is considered only for gaseous flows or for mixed flows with significant percentage of gas,
indicatively greater than 50% in mass. For the non-gas flow systems the acoustic energy generated in
pressure reducer devices is not resulting in severe piping vibration. Liquid flow systems are not considered to
have potential problems and they don’t need to be evaluated at all.
For gas flow system, acoustic fatigue is checked at rated capacity, therefore PSV, CV and RO have to be
already sized (preliminary sizing by process function is considered adequate for preliminary analysis).
For mixed flow systems, acoustic fatigue has to be checked against required capacity, and not at the rated
capacity. The parameters to be used for calculation are those referred only to the gas phase.
For the purpose of this evaluation, the service type for the reducing pressure device should be defined as:
 “Short term” which operates 12 hours or less cumulatively during the entire life of the plant
Doc. No. CR-COR-ENG_PRC-008-E
CORPORATE CRITERIA
Rev. 01 Date 08/11/13
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 “Continuous” all other cases.


The treatment required for a system in continuous service may not be justified for one in short term service.
 Short term service is applied to all PSVs and to CVs and ROs depending on the single case. ROs
downstream BDVs are considered in short term service. The treatment approach recommended for
systems in "short term service" is based primarily on how far the calculated sound power level (PWL) is
above the "Design limit”.
 Continuous service is applied to CVs and ROs if not in short term service. The continuous service
requires more positive action to reduce acoustically induced vibrations and takes into account the total
plant life (e.g. corrosion allowance shall not be considered in pipe thickness).
4.3 PRELIMINARY PROCESS SCREENING
The criteria described below provide guidelines to determine when more detailed evaluation is required and
they represent an initial screening to eliminate the obviously safe systems.
Downstream line size of 400 mm (16 in.) and greater
 Condition 1: Mass flow rate lower than 91000 kg/h (Total flow rate if more than one pressure reducing
systems are operating).
 Condition 2: Pressure ratio lower than 3.
If conditions 1 or 2 are not satisfied, the system will be identified as critical for acoustic fatigue and it will be
indicated in line list too.
If conditions 1 and 2 are satisfied, the system is not critical, therefore no further analysis are required.
Downstream line size less than 400 mm (16 in.)
 Condition 1: Downstream line velocity lower than 50% of sonic velocity
 Condition 2: Pressure ratio lower than 3.
If conditions 1 and 2 are not satisfied, the system will be identified as critical for acoustic fatigue and it will be
indicated in line list too.
If conditions 1 or 2 are satisfied, the system is not critical, therefore no further analysis are required.
Pressure reducing systems defined as critical for acoustic fatigue, should be evaluated in greater detail by
process function. This detailed evaluation requires calculation of sound power level at the source for all
critical downstream piping.
4.4 SOUND POWER LEVEL GENERATED AT THE SOURCE
The factor to be used to individuate the critical cases is called “Sound Power Level” and aims to predict the
entity of acoustic energy in correspondence of pressure reducing devices. It results from the sum of several
factors related essentially to: mass flow rate, upstream and downstream pressures, temperature and gas
molecular weight.
The calculation is related to relief modality:
 Single relief;
 Multiple relief.
Single relief modality considers that only one pressure reducing device acts like a source. In this case sound
power level calculation and verification is made for the line immediately downstream the pressure reducing
device and the header.
Multiple relief modality occurs when two or more laterals, each containing a noise source, are connected to a
common header. The PWL transmitted on the header results in a combination of those deriving from each
single source. The PWL is verified for the header.
For the two modalities, the calculation determines the sound power level (PWL) at the source using the
pressure drop, flow rate, molecular weight and the temperature.
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Equation 1

PWL s  K1  K 2  K 3  K 4  K 5
where:
PWLs = Overall sound power level generated by the source, in dB
K1 is the factor accounting for the pressure ratio across the valve. It is defined as:
Equation 2

P P 
K1  36 * Log  1 2 
 P1 
Where:
P1 = Upstream pressure (for PSV, set pressure + overpressure), in bar abs.
P2 = Downstream pressure (for PSV, total backpressure), in bar abs.
This is a conservative calculation, the lower the P 2 the greater the PWL value.
K2 is the factor accounting for the flow rate through the PSV. It is defined as:
Equation 3

K2  20 * LogW
Where:
W = mass flow rate, in kg/h
K3 is the factor accounting for the fluid temperature and molecular weight.
Equation 4

T 
K 3  12 * Log  1 
 M1 
Where:
T1 = upstream temperature, in K.
M1 = molecular weight, in kg/kmol.
K4 is the factor accounting for sonic flow conditions downstream the pressure reducing device.
 If sonic flow exists, K4 =6
 Else, K4= 0 (This is the general case for letdown valves, PSV and restriction orifices which are designed
with a Mach number < 1 to prevent sonic flow in the downstream line)
K5 is the factor for metric (SI) units.
 K5 = 55 dB
4.4.1 Combined power level from multiple sources
When two or more noise sources are in parallel (e.g. two or more PSVs relieving simultaneously) their PWLs
have to be combined by a logarithmic addition to obtain the total PWL. The verification on the header will be
performed considering the conservative Sound Power Level calculated as follows:
Equation 5

 PW L1 PW L2 PW LN

PWLTotal  10 * Log 10 10  10 10  ...  10 10 

 
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In case of two or more pressure reducing devices, belonging to the same item (e.g. 15-PSV-001A/B/C/D),
are discharging in parallel, it is assumed they have the same flow rate, same operating conditions and the
same PWLi.
Equation 6

PWLTotal  PWL1  3 * N  1
Where:
PWLTotal = Sound power level in the common line considering a number N of pressure reducer devices
discharging in parallel.
N = Effective number of pressure reducer devices discharging in parallel.
PWL1 = Sound power level at source (generated by each pressure reducer device).
The proposed calculation is preliminary and conservative because it is considering the total PWL generated
at source and it is not considering attenuation due to expansion (enlargements), branch connections and
pipe length.
The effective number of devices discharging simultaneously shall be carefully evaluated (consider
staggering) to avoid the sum of PWLs. Typical value to be considered are 2 max 3 contemporary discharge.

4.5 ALLOWABLE POWER SOUND LEVEL


The calculated PWLs are compared to the allowable design limits in function of nominal pipe diameter and
wall thickness. The design limits were established based on an empirical correlation of actual operating
experience and can be used to evaluate both new and existing piping systems with large pressure
reductions. The allowable limit curves, referring to pipes whose nominal diameter is lower than 36” and to
those greater than 36”, are reported in Figure 1 and Figure 2 respectively.
Wall thickness “t” corresponds to the pipe wall thickness as per piping class for “short term services”, while
corrosion allowance shall be taken into account for “continuous services”.
 Sound Power level allowable : PWL value corresponding to D/t in the curve
 Minimum thickness allowable : "t" value corresponding to PWL in the curve
Figure 1 – Allowable limit curve for pipes up to 36”
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Figure 2 – Allowable limit curve for pipes greater than 36”

For single relief, the diameter is likely to be that downstream of the pressure reducer device line.
For multiple relief the diameter is likely to be that of the common line.
4.6 AF PROCESS CHECK RESULTS
The calculated PWL value has to be under the limit boundary (allowable PWL) reported in Figure 1 and
Figure 2.
 If calculated PWL is below the allowable PWL, the line downstream the pressure reducer device results
“Verified” and no changes and further analysis are required.
 If calculated PWL is above the allowable PWL, the line is “Not Verified” and the downstream line is
subjected to acoustic fatigue therefore improving action should be investigated (refer to 4.7).
If improving action are effective, the new calculated PWL should be lower than the allowable one, therefore
the line will be “Verified” and the downstream line will not be submitted to further analysis.
If improving action are not applicable or not effective (calculated PWL still remains above the limit), the
downstream line should still be defined critical for acoustic fatigue and therefore will be submitted to further
investigation outside process scope. For this reason, a note on P&ID (e.g. “Potentially subjected to acoustic
fatigue”) has to be reported for all involved lines. Moreover, the data reported in Table 1 and illustrated in
Figure 3 should be identified, and reported in line list to allow the following detailed investigation.
Table 1 – Process data for AF critical lines
Mass Flow Rate kg/hr Mass flow rate through the reducing device
Upstream pressure P1 bar abs Pressure Upstream the reducing device
Downstream pressure P2 bar abs Pressure Downstream the reducing device
Downstream velocity m/s Fluid velocity downstream the reducing device
MACH Nr. Ratio between the effective and sonic velocity downstream the reducing device
Service Type Short Term or Continuous
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Molecular weight kg/kmol Molecular weight


Upstream Operating
K Upstream Operating Temperature
Temperature
Downstream Density kg/m3 Fluid density downstream the reducing device
Process parameter ρv2 kg/ms3 Process parameter
PWL calculated dB Sound Power Level calculated in correspondence of the reducing device
PWL allowable dB Allowable Sound Power Level resulting from Fig. 4.2.2 .b and 4.2.2.c
Δ PWL dB Difference between the calculated and the allowable Sound Power Level value
Process CHECK VERIFIED / NOT VERIFIED

Figure 3 – Scheme for process data

4.7 IMPROVING ACTIONS REGARDING THE PROCESS AREA


The main improving actions to be investigated and regarding the process area are reported. They are all
finalized to the reduction of the calculated Sound Power Level values within the allowable limits:
 Review the process data regarding the entity of pressure drops avoiding conservative margins on
process data;
 In cases of PSV systems, insertion of additional PSV in order to reduce the flow rate on the single piping
circuit;
 In case of controlled depressurization systems, setting of a discharge ΔP – Flow Rate curve in order to
ensure the completion of the process keeping the Sound Power Level within the allowable limits in each
single step;
 Modification of the line diameter to increase the Sound Power Level allowable value.
 If calculated PWL is between 5dB and 10dB above the allowable PWL, verification of the PWL in case of
increased pipe thickness. If effective for acoustic fatigue reduction, solution should be submitted to
piping function for definition / approval.

4.8 PWL METHOD ATTENUATIONS


Process checks described in the previous sections are a preliminary and conservative investigation based on
process data only and aims to evaluate the PWL in the line immediately downstream the pressure reducer
device.
A more detailed check should be based on Power Sound Level calculation at each connection / discontinuity
in downstream piping. Abrupt expansion, branch connection and pipe length may result in attenuation of
PWL and allowable PWL should be respected. Considering that detailed information on length, connection,
discontinuity in the downstream line are not available by process function, these calculations and checks are
developed by other functions.