Design and Stress Analysis of Jacketed Piping System

Jacketed piping is required to transport highly viscous fluids having very low flowability. The jackets usually provide temperature to the core pipe so that the flowability of the fluid inside the core is maintained. The jacketed piping system consists of two pipes of different sizes. The larger pipe covers or jackets the smaller size pipe. Jacketed piping consists of four main components. They are:

  • Core Pipe: This central smaller size pipe of a jacketed piping system that carries the fluid from one point to the other.
  • Jacket Pipe: This is the larger size pipe that carry superheated steam to maintain the temperature of fluid flowing in the core pipe.
  • Steam Feeder: This is a tapping connection in the Jacket pipe to provide a path for the steam inlet or outlet.
  • Spacer/ Guide Plate/ Spider: Spacers shall be provided for supporting core pipe from jacket pipe and to ensure a uniform gap between core and jacket pipes. The detailed dimensions and design of the spacer shall be as the design guide of jacketed piping prepared by the layout team. Stress engineer to follow spider spacing chart while analysis.

Types Of Jacketed Piping

Depending on the nature of the jacket pipe over core pipe, two types of Jacketed Piping are found; Continuous jacketing and Discontinuous jacketing.

Continuous Jacketing: In this type of piping all piping components including the straight lengths of pipe, fittings, flanges, valves, and branch connections are fully covered by the jacketed pipe.

Discontinuous Jacketing: This type of Jacket pipe consists of jacketing of only straight lengths of the core pipe. Here Branch connections, elbows, Tees, other Fittings, and Valves are not jacketed.

Applications Of Jacketed Piping

Jacketed piping is not used widely and has got some limited applications. This type of piping is only required where a certain temperature need to be maintained throughout the transportation of fluid from one point to another. Some of the typical examples of jacketed piping are:

  • To transport molten Sulphur through pipes in sulphuric acid plant.
  • To convey cryogenic liquid oxygen in the oxygen generation unit.
  • Jacket piping can also be used to stop the piping network from getting frost.
  • To maintain fluidity throughout piping network in vegetable oil manufacturing plant
  • To keep pipeline system warm when passing through cold areas.
  • To stop choking of pipe because of extreme cold temperature in Bulk career merchant ship.

Design Consideration for Jacketed Piping Systems

Jacketed piping systems are highly complex systems as compared to the usual process piping due to their double-walled piping network. So, these type of piping networks require special consideration during engineering, designing, and execution phase. Some of the design points are mentioned below:

Fluid Pressure: The core pipe will be subjected to both internal and external pressure. So the thickness of core piping must be designed for both the pressure considerations. Also, It is preferable that the fluid flowing in the core pipe have lower operating pressure as compared to the jacket pipe. This will ensure that the product can be contained in the jacket any unforeseen failure in process core piping.

Feeder Port Location: The feeder inlet and outlet port location varies as per the media in the jacket pipe. For Liquid medium in the jacket pipe, the inlet feeder port should be located at the lowest point and outlet should be at the highest point. This will ensure the jacket to be filled with media before leaving the system.

While for gaseous media in the jacket, Inlet port of feeder should be at highest point and the outlet point should be at the lowest point.

Slope: A jacketed piping system usually installed with some slope to help in fluid flow of the core pipe. This will also ensure the complete drain out of process fluid from core pipe.

Fluid Flow Direction: The fluid flow direction inside the core and jacket pipe preferably be opposite to each other for better heat transfer. This will increase the heat transfer efficiency.

Continuity Breaks And Joints: Number of break-up flanges should be minimized to reduce fitting cost.

System Components And Layout: During the designing of the jacketed piping network following points need to be considered:

  • Thermal difference and expansion between the core pipe material and jacket pipe material.
  • The potential of corrosion on both core and jacket side of the pipe.
  • Types of section connectors to be used.
  • Any requirement of turbulence mechanism in the pipe such as flow disruptors, fins, and wraps.
  • Internal supports or guide strips installed between jacket and core pipe.

Introduction to Jacketed Piping Stress Analysis

Jacketed piping requires special stress analysis. Jacketed piping is commonly used to convey very viscous process fluids in an inner pipe, heated by steam/hot water/hot oil or other heating media between the jacket and core pipe. Fig 1 shows the normal components of a jacketed piping system. General Definitions of Jacketed Piping Components for stress analysis are mentioned below:

Components of a Jacketed Piping System
Fig. 1: Components of a Jacketed Piping System

Partition Plate/End Plate:

Partition plate or end plate shall be placed where the flow of steam or heating medium is interrupted for full jacketed system or at the end of the partially jacketed system. The detailed dimensions and designs shall be as a design guide prepared by the layout team for jacketed piping.

End Closure:

End closure shall be used to terminate jacket piping. There are two types of end closure: Cap Type and Plate Type.


The length of a single jacket circuit is limited & the supply of heating medium cannot be provided separately for each circuit. Jump-overs (Fig. 2) are used to connect two different jacket circuits in series for a continuous supply of heating medium and draining system. Details of Jump-over sizes and design shall be as per the guide prepared by the layout team for jacketed piping.

Fig. 2: Figure showing typical jump overs in Jacketed Piping System
Fig. 2: Figure showing typical jump overs in Jacketed Piping System

Jacket Medium:

Heating medium can be gas or liquid.

Reinforcing Ring Plate:

In case the jacket pipe is to be terminated on the core pipe having a thickness of SCH 10S and below, the core pipe shall be suitably reinforced with a reinforcement ring at the weld joint.

Supporting Concept for Jacketed Piping Systems

All supports shall be provided on jacket pipe.

CAESAR II MODELLING of Jacketed Piping

Modeling the Core Pipe:

The core pipe of a jacketed piping system are modelled in Caesar II as per the below-mentioned steps

  • Do not give insulation thickness while modeling core pipe.
  • The temperature should be the temperature of the process line.
  • Pressure should be the pressure of the process line.
  • Fluid density should be the fluid density of the process fluid.
  • No wind/wave or earthquake to be applied on the core.
  • All core bends are of large diameter (R = 1.5D). For slurry lines where radius may be 4D then the same shall be entered (refer to project standard).
  • In case of Cross-Arrangement for providing rodding facility, SIF can be obtained from vendor and shall be entered in all four points of Cross-Connection.
  • No supports shall come directly on the core pipe.
  • The selection of node numbers is the same as normal pipe modeling starting from node 10.
  • All spiders, which are acting as internal supports, can be modeled as vertical restraints plus lateral restraints (guides) with gaps as mentioned in the jacketed piping specification.
  • The location of the spider shall be presumed before modeling & provide a free node at that location.
  • At places where the jacket will be supported, give node numbers of those locations in core pipe like 5, 15, 115 (Refer Fig. 3), etc. All other nodes will be multiple of 10.
  • The starting and finishing node to rigid node should be defined as restraints, which will help to connect the core pipe and jacket pipe.
  • All rigid elements shall be modeled as a normal modeling procedure.

Modeling the Jacket Pipe:

The following steps are used to model the jacket pipe:

  • An easy way is to model the jacket pipe by running through the entire core and then duplicate the core piping using a proper node increment (like 1000).
  • Change the diameter of the jacket pipe according to the specifications.
  • Change the wall thickness of the jacket pipe.
  • All jacketed bends are of short radius i.e. R=1D. For slurry lines, the radius may change. Refer to project standard.
  • In case of Cross-Arrangement for providing rodding facility, SIF can be obtained from vendor and shall be entered in all four points of Cross-Connection.
  • Apply insulation thickness and insulation density.
  • Apply wind/wave/seismic if any.
  • The temperature should be the temperature of the heating medium.
  • Pressure should be the pressure of the heating medium.
  • All supports should be on the jacketed portion only.
  • If steam is flowing in the jacket pipe then put density as zero, otherwise, follow the formula provided in the next point.
  • If both the jacket and the core are fluid-filled, the fluid density of the jacket must be reduced to avoid excess (incorrect) weight. Caesar-II does not do this automatically.
  • Calculate the actual density as per below calculation:-
  • Actual jacket fluid density = [(rj2 – Rc2)/ rj2 ] x dj

Where,                  rj  = Inner radius of jacket;   Rc = Outer radius of core;       dj   =  Density of heating medium

Figure showing the node numbering
Fig. 3: Figure showing the node numbering

Combining the Core and Jacket Modeling:

  • The jacket will end with flange joints/ Plate/ Capped End. So at these points, there will be a physical connection between the core and the jacket. So these points need to be connected by an anchor. For example, if there is a flange at node 50 then;

50 ANC CNODE 1050; 60 ANC CNODE 1060

Delete the rigid element 1050-1060 from jacket portion.

  • At the spider locations, define Y, Z restraints (on the core pipe) if the pipe is in the X direction and then connect it by giving CNODE on the jacket.
  • If the line is partially jacketed then model it the same as the full jacket piping and delete the element from the jacket portion where the line is not jacketed.
  • Somewhere in the full jacketed system delete the rigid element.
  • In some systems, the jacket and the core consist of different materials. This condition must be modeled very carefully since the thermal growth in the core will be different from the thermal growth of the jacket.


Click here to find the major checks which are required for jacketed piping stress analysis using Caesar II 


  • In general engineering practice, the maximum length of the jacket served by one hot water inlet shall be 20m and one steam inlet shall be 25m.
  • In the same way, the total length of one circuit shall not exceed 20m in case of continuous jacketing and 25m in case of discontinuous jacketing.
  • Max length required to a single jacket shall also dependent on buckling load (Pcr) check.
  • Jump-overs shall be designed such that air pockets may be avoided with a heating medium as the liquid.
  • The flow of the heating medium through the jacket shall be in series to avoid any cold point in the system.
  • For heating medium, as liquid, the feed and drain nozzle shall be provided at the lowest and highest point of the jacket respectively. For heating medium, as vapor, the feed and drain nozzle shall be provided at the highest and lowest point of jacket respectively.
  • As far as possible flange joints on the core pipe shall be avoided. They are to be provided only at equipment nozzles, valves, sp. fittings, instruments, etc. having flanged ends. Also for lines that need to be dismantled during maintenance.
  • Additional lateral restraints, in the form of spacers, can cause high axial loads which could conceivably initiate distress at the pipe to flange welds.
  • Spacers should be located to act only as ‘supports’ for deadweight bending of the core pipe. Indiscriminate location of spacers can produce a “locked-up” condition resulting in high expansion stresses. Check forces on Spiders. The forces shall not be too high that cause bending/ crushing of spiders. Spider is meant just for alignment.
  • Sometimes break-up flanges may be required after each change in direction. Stress engineer to model the same from initial modeling. And sometimes in a straight run two-three break-up flanges may come. In that case, the force and moment at anchor points will be too high if the temperature differential between core and jacket is large.
  • Weight of flanges and valves used for jacketed piping and flanges will be reducing flanges and valves may be jacket valves. Weight shall be taken from vendor print.
  • After each jacketed reducer provide at least 300 mm spool piece (Refer Fig. 4) before attaching any flange or reducer to reduce chances of thermal failure if required. Inform layout about this from the initial stage to avoid unnecessary changes later. (For control valve assembly and PSV lines)
Spool piece in between flange and reducer to avoid stress failure.
Fig. 4: Spool piece in between flange and reducer to avoid stress failure.
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Anup Kumar Dey

I am a Mechanical Engineer turned into a Piping Engineer. Currently, I work in a reputed MNC as a Senior Piping Stress Engineer. I am very much passionate about blogging and always tried to do unique things. This website is my first venture into the world of blogging with the aim of connecting with other piping engineers around the world.

2 thoughts on “Design and Stress Analysis of Jacketed Piping System

  1. Sir I want to ask you a modelling approach for jacket pipe at termination point of connecting equipment.
    1.Can we anchor core or jacket pipe(Any one) and connect both by using C-Node?
    2.Mention two different anchors in both core and jacket and mention c node in any one of them?
    3.mention 2 different anchors of both core and jacket and one more anchor with c-node mentioned?

    Please clarify.

  2. Hi anup i am amir from iran
    I am a piping engineer too i need to your advice about a working problem please say to me about a way to connection

    My phone number: +989210103986

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