GE Aviation Gas Piping System Design
McGill’s MEP team recently completed a project with MWM Construction and Rigging for the GE Aviation plant in Asheville that involved designing a piping system for the various industrial gases used by the plant.
“After completing a process water project for the GE Aviation plant in Asheville, North Carolina, GE requested our team design a piping system. These piping systems convey liquid carbon dioxide, as well as helium and argon gas. This required building out pressure relief and pressure regulation systems for high pressure and cryogenic applications. These particular chemicals are used to develop components for the jet engines produced by GE,” explained McGill’s MEP Project Manager, Drew Hubbard.
Detailed Gas Piping System Design
Our team created process and instrumentation diagram (P&ID) to visualize the design intent for the new piping yard for the GE industrial gas systems. These systems included argon gas for the welding operations, liquid carbon dioxide for extreme cold applications, and helium gas for laser system operation. The tank piping yard included the design of new bulk tank distribution systems and a new piping network to feed the plant expansion applications. The design included completion of the P&ID’s and construction documents for the contractor to construct the new piping systems.
Communication is Critical
This project required communicating multiple engineering calculations and critical design information to the construction contractor. The construction documents included pressure regulator valve calculations and pressure relief valve selections to provide a safely operating distribution system with certified pressure safety systems implemented during construction.
Working with Cryogenic Applications
Working with cryogenic applications poses multiple safety hazards, including physical hazards – such as fire, explosion, and pressure buildup – as well as health hazards – such as severe frostbite and asphyxiation. Cryogenic liquids can also cause common materials – such as carbon steel, rubber, and plastic – to become brittle and even break under stress. All cryogenic liquids produce large volumes of gas when they vaporize. If these liquids vaporize, they can produce enormous amounts of pressure that can rupture the container. Thus, the pressure regulator and relief systems are all rated for cryogenic applications requiring valves and equipment rated for temperatures operating near -300°C.
“It was a wonderful challenge working closely with GE Aviation engineers to develop a gas piping system that met their manufacturing needs,” Drew stated.
To learn more about the services that McGill’s MEP team provides for clients across North Carolina and Tennessee, read the case study about how our team worked to help reduce cost and energy expenditure at the Arthur R. Edington Center in Asheville.