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Denis Zuev
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EJMA Standard: How to Select, Design, Apply, Install, and Maintain Metallic Bellows Type Expansion Joints


What is EJMA standard and why do you need it?




If you are involved in piping and vessel installation, you may have heard of EJMA standard. But what exactly is it and why is it important for your work? In this article, we will explain everything you need to know about EJMA standard, how to get it, and how to use it.




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EJMA stands for Expansion Joint Manufacturers Association, which is an organization that represents the leading manufacturers of metallic bellows type expansion joints. Expansion joints are devices that allow for movement and flexibility in piping and vessel systems, which are subject to thermal expansion, contraction, vibration, or other stresses. Metallic bellows are one type of expansion joints that consist of thin-walled metal cylinders that can bend and stretch under pressure.


EJMA standard is a set of guidelines and recommendations that provide the best practices for the selection, design, application, installation, and maintenance of metallic bellows type expansion joints. It is based on the collective knowledge and experience of the EJMA members, who are experts in the field of expansion joints. It also incorporates the latest research and development in this area.


By using EJMA standard, you can ensure that your piping and vessel systems are safe, reliable, efficient, and durable. You can also avoid costly mistakes, failures, or accidents that may result from improper use of expansion joints. EJMA standard is recognized throughout the world as the authority on metallic bellows type expansion joints, and it is widely used by engineers, contractors, inspectors, regulators, and end-users.


What are metallic bellows type expansion joints?




Metallic bellows type expansion joints are devices that allow for movement and flexibility in piping and vessel systems that are subject to thermal expansion, contraction, vibration, or other stresses. They consist of thin-walled metal cylinders that can bend and stretch under pressure. They are also known as metal bellows, metal expansion joints, or simply bellows.


Metallic bellows type expansion joints have many advantages over other types of expansion joints, such as rubber or fabric ones. They can withstand high temperatures, pressures, and corrosive environments. They can also accommodate large movements and complex configurations. They can reduce noise, vibration, and stress in the piping and vessel systems. They can also extend the service life and performance of the systems.


Metallic bellows type expansion joints have many applications in various industries, such as power generation, oil and gas, chemical and petrochemical, aerospace, marine, and HVAC. They are used to connect pipes, vessels, pumps, turbines, compressors, heat exchangers, valves, and other equipment that may experience thermal expansion, contraction, vibration, or other stresses. They are also used to compensate for misalignment, settlement, or seismic activity.


What are the main features of EJMA standard?




The authority on expansion joints




EJMA standard is the most reliable and comprehensive source of information on metallic bellows type expansion joints. It is based on the collective knowledge and experience of the EJMA members, who are the leading manufacturers of expansion joints in the world. It also incorporates the latest research and development in this area.


EJMA standard covers all aspects of metallic bellows type expansion joints, such as terminology, nomenclature, materials, design criteria, fabrication, testing, inspection, installation, maintenance, and quality assurance. It also provides tables, charts, formulas, examples, and illustrations to help the users understand and apply the standard.


EJMA standard is updated periodically to reflect the changes and improvements in the field of expansion joints. The current edition is the 10th edition, which was published in 2016. The previous editions were published in 2008 (9th edition), 2003 (8th edition), 1997 (7th edition), 1993 (6th edition), 1988 (5th edition), 1984 (4th edition), 1978 (3rd edition), 1975 (2nd edition), and 1957 (1st edition).


The latest edition




The 10th edition of EJMA standard is the most recent and updated version of the standard. It contains many significant changes and improvements compared to the previous editions. Some of the main changes are:


  • A new approach was developed for the design of reinforced bellows, resulting in a modified set of equations for some stress components and for the spring rates. The result was that the calculated bending stress due to deflection could be considerably reduced.



  • The number of fatigue cycles can now be calculated from the same set of fatigue curves which are relevant for the unreinforced bellows and for the toroidal bellows. The bellows fatigue life or cycle life calculations were greatly enhanced and simplified.



  • The calculation of universal type expansion joints has been simplified by a modified equation for the axial movement per convolution.



  • An acceptable radial gap between equalizing/reinforcing rings and the root of convolution/bellows tangent is introduced to section 6.



  • The 10th edition has been modified to include English & Metric units of measure. This includes standard conversions in addition to constants used in calculations.



  • Tightness of bellows, bands, and rings due to dissimilar material growth rates is considered.



  • Bellows pitch and height tolerances were redefined relative to diameter.



  • The distinction of thin versus thick bellows has been added.



  • Benchmark table inputs and outputs have been revised, with material class and correction factor.



  • Single bellows axial vibration constants were revised.



  • Definitions in the nomenclature section 1.3 have been clarified.



The practical guide




With each printed copy of the 10th edition of EJMA standard, you will receive EJMA's Practical Guide to Expansion Joints, a pocket size primer based on the EJMA's standards. This guide is intended to provide users with a basic understanding of expansion joints. It will also assist the user in communicating design requirements to the manufacturers and to properly install and maintain the expansion joint in service.


The practical guide covers topics such as:


  • What are expansion joints?



  • Why use expansion joints?



  • What are metallic bellows?



  • How do metallic bellows work?



  • What are the types of metallic bellows?



  • How are metallic bellows designed?



  • How are metallic bellows fabricated?



Q: What is EJMA?


A: EJMA stands for Expansion Joint Manufacturers Association, which is an organization that represents the leading manufacturers of metallic bellows type expansion joints.


Q: What is EJMA standard?


A: EJMA standard is a set of guidelines and recommendations that provide the best practices for the selection, design, application, installation, and maintenance of metallic bellows type expansion joints.


Q: What are the benefits of using EJMA standard?


A: By using EJMA standard, you can ensure that your piping and vessel systems are safe, reliable, efficient, and durable. You can also avoid costly mistakes, failures, or accidents that may result from improper use of expansion joints. EJMA standard is recognized throughout the world as the authority on metallic bellows type expansion joints.


Q: How to get EJMA standard?


A: You have three options to get EJMA standard: the printed version, the e-book version, or the free download option. You can order or download the standard from the EJMA website or from other online sources.


Q: How to use EJMA standard?


A: You have three aspects to consider when using EJMA standard: the design criteria, the installation guidelines, and the technical inquiries. You can use EJMA standard as a guide to help you select, design, apply, install, and maintain your expansion joints. You can also contact EJMA for any technical questions or issues related to expansion joints.


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