Pipe lines in refineries and chemical plants consist of many types of components and sizes. During the design phase of a plant these components are selected mainly based on the design conditions of the process contained in the piping systems. The components are grouped in so-called pipe classes. The class defines the components to be used for certain process conditions.

Click this link to view a 5 minute introduction to PCC.

An average petrochemical plant can use between 50 to 500 different pipe classes. If a pipe class consists of for example 250 components, the pipe specification containing all pipe classes defines over 10,000 components. It is a tedious task to define the pipe classes during the design phase of a project, to handle them during construction and maintain the warehouse with spare components during operation of the plant without proper software tools.


Image: pcc - extensive material database

PCC is a pipe class component selection and calculation application. The selection of components is made efficient by providing drag and drop facilities, cut, copy and paste, and multi selection like in a spreadsheet application. Full pipe classes can be copied for example to evaluate alternatives.


Image: review component data

PCC is a bulk calculation program. All the strength calculations are done on the fly, everything can be exported to spreadsheet format, pipe classes can be exported and imported in XML format. The XML format can be used to import data in to other applications like ERP systems.


Image: drag and drop of branch table

PCC can also select pipe schedules by using the designer wizard. Only a limited amount of basic information is required and PCC will select the minimum required schedules based on the design conditions.

PCC can calculated according three codes ASME B31.3, EN13480 and RToD. The code can be changed by changing only the code selection. PCC will determine by itself whether the selected materials can be used for the selected code.

Conclusion: PCC is tuned for efficiency. The use of spreadsheet calculations and endless manual iterations to find the best solutions is not necessary anymore. Now the engineer can very quickly determine whether for example two pipe classes can be combined or not, or whether the elbow and tees are critical for stress calculations later in the design process.


Image: pipe class designer wizard

Red-Bag is developing software which must be the best solution for a specific task. PCC is a good example where selection, calculation, evaluation, reporting and exporting is merged in a tool that serves its purpose. The best proof is that our clients buy our software, not because we are the cheapest, but because they want our software.

Link to the public PCC User Manual

Link to demo download form

The current calculation codes include:

  • ASME B31.1
  • ASME B31.3
  • ASME B31.4
  • ASME B31.8
  • EN 13480
  • EN 1594
  • RToD

The slideshow below illustrates some of the features of the PCC software.

 

The EN 1594 calculation code is for gas distribution system and gas stations with a maximum operating pressure over 16 bar and a design temperature between -40 and 120 Celsius. The pipe lines are for on-land gas supply systems.

The gas supply system consist of underground pipe lines and above ground stations. The calculations according EN 1594 use different design factors for determining the allowable stress. For example the design factor for underground piping is 0.72 and for stations is 0.67. This means that the allowable stress for underground piping can be higher than for the same material used in gas stations.

The PCC software can use different settings for pipe classes that are used in underground piping or stations. In case of customer specific requirements the design factor can be edited according the customer requirements. For example: a customer can use a lower design factor such 0.5 to have a higher safety margin in the piping system.

PCC - EN 13480 software

The EN 13480 calculation code for piping components is a relatively new code. The code has newly developed calculation methods of which most are based on existing national (European) calculation codes, such as AD2000, BS 5500, CODAP or RToD.

The EN calculation codes use the material strength values as defined in the EN material codes. If a material does not exist certain methods can be used to get an acceptable value.

Many plants in Europe use ASME/ASTM materials. The material properties of these materials are not listed within the EN material codes and normally the ASME/ASTM strength values cannot be used directly within a EN code calculation. However there are examples where a NOBO (Notified Body) accepted the direct use of the ASME/ASTM strength values within a EN 13480 calculation.

The engineer using the PCC software has the possibility to select this possibility at the Project Settings. The stress values of the relevant ASME/ASTM material standard are used if the check mark is checked. Otherwise the EN approach is used and the relevant allowable stresses are calculated by the PCC software.

PCC - ASME B31.3 special features

The ASME B31.3 states that fittings do not have to be calculated in case the fitting is listed in the Table 326.1. This table gives a list of standards with fittings having an established rating.

However, under special circumstances or when a fitting (such as a Tee) is custom build, the fitting needs to be calculated.

PCC has a special setting for the pipe classes which allows the calculation of custom fittings or also to calculate the rated fittings. The check mark as shown in above image allows the engineer to make the detail calculations for the rated or custom fittings.

The rating only of the fitting is checked against the pressure temperature combinations of the pipe class when the check mark is unchecked.