left border  
U.S. Bellows U.S. BELLOWS, INC.
  Contact Us: +1 (281) 241-9418 Toll Free: (855) 591-0906   Se habla español
Return to usbellows.com

download pdfDownload Metallic Pipe Exapnsion Joint Catalog [PDF]

Download Fabric Expansion Joint CatalogDownload Fabric Expansion Joint Catalog [PDF]

U.S. Bellows Request for Quotation


left border  
All bellows have a critical pressure at which they become unstable. Instability can occur in either of two modes, column instability (or squirm), or in-plane deformation of the convolution side wall. Squirm affects the bellows as a whole, while in-plane deformation only affects one or more convolutes individually.

Column instability (or squirm), is the phenomena whereby the centerline of a straight bellows develops a sideways or lateral bow.

  Example of Bellows Squirm Bellows Squirm Drawing
The critical pressure at which this instability occurs is a direct function of the diameter and spring rate, and an inverse function of the length. If the bellows is bent, or angulated, the centerline can begin to move away from the center of curvature.

In each case, the effective length of the bellows increases, lowering the material available to withstand the pressure, thereby increasing the hoop stresses. As the length increases, the tendency to squirm increases and the stresses become higher and higher until catastrophic failure occurs.

A simple way to visualize this phenomena is to remember that the bellows is a cylinder of given volume. Internal pressure tries to increase a vessel's volume. Since a bellows is flexible in the axial direction, it can increase its volume by increasing the length of its centerline. With the ends fixed, it does so by simulating the appearance of a buckling column.

We perform standard pressure tests on all our bellows to ensure the unit will not squirm in service. Tests are not mandatory by EJMA, but it is highly recommended to perform a pressure or hydrostatic test prior to service.


Contact Us: +1 (281) 241-9418 Toll Free: (855) 591-0906 Fax: +1 (713) 731-8640 sales@usbellows.com
Our Parent Company: Piping Technology Pipe Supports, Pipe Clamps, Pipe Hardware & Insulated Pipe Shoes
Fellow Subsidiaries: Sweco Fab: ASME Vessels, Pig Launchers, Duct Work, Strainers & Spectacle Blinds
 Pipe Shields: Pre-Insulated Pipe Supports, Slides, Guides & Anchors

Fronek Anchor/Darling
: Snubbers, Sway Struts & Sway Braces

Copyright © 2018  U.S. Bellows, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Privacy Policy