Improved mechanical design of metal flanges

The objective of the experiment is to study and predict of the behaviour of flanges during tightening process, getting a deep understanding about the elastic interactions between elements, and the final sealing operational parameters.

Flanges are elements that join metallic pieces as high pressure gas pipes. Between the flanges, a gasket is placed inside a groove. Several bolts and nuts are used to press both flanges and seal the join. The process of tightening is done in steps, pulling from one side of a subset of the bolts and screwing their nuts. These steps are executed until the final desired stress is reached. The experiment will develop a frontend to study several cases of tightening to find the cheapest and most effective method, this means, to find which subset of bolts must be used and which load must be applied in each step, studying if the gasket or the flanges have been damaged on the process and the final achieved mechanical properties of the sealing (stress, existing gaps, etc.).

The experiment will use the software code_aster.