For the girth flange of heat exchangers, the circumferential temperature distribution of shell and connecting flange due to inside fluid will affect tightness of the girth flange, however this effect is not considered in present design codes. It is important to know the key characteristics of flange tightness to minimize the risk of leakage. In past studies, the effects of circumferential temperature distribution on flange tightness were investigated at high temperature operations. The effects of partial cooling on flange tightness might be severer than circumferential high temperature distribution.

In this paper, the effects of partial cooling on flange tightness were studied. The flange tightness was evaluated by wideness of partially cooled region (liquid level) of heat exchanger and gasket recovery characteristics parametrically. Based on these studies, it was concluded that the gasket contact pressure was decreased by the partial cooling of heat exchanger and the effects of the above mentioned factors were summarized quantitatively.

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