Overview and uses
A tank head is a formed piece of metal that is used for firmly securing the open end of a tank to prevent spills and leaks. Such heads are also required to be used on regular or pressurized vessels. In some industries, these are referred to as ‘vessel heads’. There are several desirable attributes expected from a vessel head; these include sturdiness, high tolerances, uniform material thicknesses, and a perfect fit.
This particular component could be used on an autoclave, on vehicles that transport fuels and other fluids, chemical processing vessels, or on regular underground or aboveground water tanks.
Manufacturing tank heads
Tank heads can be manufactured in a variety of shapes such as circular, curved, and elliptical, with flanges. In most cases, an off-the-shelf approach doesn’t work well for these vital components. Experts recommend that procuring a custom head for the tank is the best way to ensure a secure fit and the desired quality. A firm that specializes in custom fabrication and forming services can be contacted for these requirements. Such Companies have a full-fledged set-up where the most complex vessel head requirements can be honored.
Popular forming methods
Heads for tanks are usually made from a single sheet of metal. Welding different components to form a head for a tank could cause it to crack at the seams, and lead to leaks or spillage. The best way to form sheet metal for this component is through the use of methods such as hydroforming and metal spinning. These methods are also recommended when heads with tight tolerances are needed.
Here are some other reasons why spinning and hydroforming are the preferred methods for forming such heads for vessels and tanks:
- Advanced hydroforming and spinning methods can be used for creating regular heads that require a diameter of up to 15” and a depth of up to 10”.
- These methods are also suitable when larger heads with a diameter of up to 72” are required.
- Various metals such as aluminum, steel, and stainless steel can be used for making a head for the desired vessel/tank.
- Manufacturing tank heads with uniform thickness is important to ensure that they do not deform or crack under pressure.
- Hydroforming and metal spinning are known to protect the integrity of the metal even as it is being formed.
Once the head component of the tank has been manufactured, it can either be bolted or welded to the tank or vessel. Alternatively, rivets can be provided on the tank for a secure fit. When placing an order, it is vital to ensure that your chosen firm adheres to standards such as ASME. Thus, it is evident that customized tank heads are a decidedly superior option to standard components from the quality and functionality standpoint.