Expansion joints work as compensating elements for thermal expansion and relative movement in pipelines, containers, and machines; hence, they are also called compensators or expansion bellows. Expansion joints can be made of metal, steel, rubber, etc. Metal expansion joints consist of one or more elastic vessels known as metal bellows at both ends of the rods, tying them together. Expansion joints are tied together with the help of fasteners. The metal compensators are distinguished by the three basic motion types, namely, axial, angular, and lateral. Axial expansion joints are utilized where the movement takes places in a straight or co-axially, while angular joints are designed for complex pipework. Lateral metal expansion joints are installed at right angles and work similar to axial joints. Apart from these three types, another metal expansion joint exists, called the universal joint.
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Universal joint, as its name suggests, can be used universally for axial, angular, and lateral motion. These metal expansion joints are available in sizes ranging from 2” to 144”. The sizes differ according to the pipeline thickness, length, and the type of fluid passing through the pipes. Metal expansion joints are produced with the ability to tolerate extreme temperatures, high pressures, and a capacity to absorb thermal growth. Metal expansion joints are considered to be a vital tool of the value chain to several industries, especially in pipeline infrastructures.
The metal expansion joints market is projected to expand at a significant growth rate during the forecast period. Metal expansion joints are extensively utilized in pipeline infrastructure. The wide usage of pipeline infrastructure in industrial and other sectors is driving the metal expansion joints market. Furthermore, there have been constant developments in the expansion joints industry such as low pressure bellows, which help facilitate the movement of pipelines. The ability of the joints to sustain high temperatures and pressures is a key factor driving the metal expansion joints market. Moreover, expansion joints require less space for installation and also they require minimal maintenance after installation. All the factors mentioned above are expected to drive the market. On the contrary, the particular movement such as linear, angular, of the joints is considered to be a major restraint of the metal expansion joints market. Additionally, some metals have restricted suitability with certain acids, causing adverse reactions to the metal as well as the fluid. The usage of steel to manufacture expansion joints is also a significant restraint to the metal expansion joints market due to the ability of steel to sustain low pressure. Furthermore, metal joints are less suitable for oscillatory movements.
The metal expansion joints market can be segmented based on product type, application, and region. In terms of product type, the metal expansion joints market can be classified into, axial expansion joints, angular expansion joints, lateral expansion joints, universal expansion joints, and others. Based on application, the metal expansion joints market can be segregated into oil & gas industry, power generation industry, heavy industry, and others. The ever-increasing demand in oil and gas industry, is considered to be the primary cause for expansion of the metal expansion joints market. In terms of region, the metal expansion joints market can be divided into North America, Middle East & Africa, Europe, Asia Pacific, and South America. The constant increase in population in Asia Pacific, has led to an increase in the demand for sustainable energy, agriculture, oil & gas, pharmaceutical and others. The increase in demand of the above mentioned segments, has led to increased industrialization, which leads to the growth of metal expansion joints market in the region.
Key players operating in the global metal expansion joints market include BIKAR-METALLE GmbH, EagleBurgmann, FlexEJ, Senior Flexonics, Macoga, Garlock, Shandong Hnegtong Expansion Joint Manufacturing, Metraflex, Triad Bellows, NiCoForm, American BOA, AEROSUN-TOLA, U.S. Bellows, Witzenmann GmbH, Beijing Hangtian Taizhou Bellows, and Gongyi Runda Pipeline. The key players in the metal expansion joints market focus on innovation in the technology and design of the metal expansion joints. Manufacturers are emphasizing on new product launches with developed technology and acquisitions in order to meet the industrial requirements and increase their share in the market. Furthermore, manufacturers are undertaking a thorough study about the different fluids passing through pipelines in order to meet the demand of the customers in terms of design aspects, application, etc. of the customers.
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