Ask Question, Ask an Expert


Ask Mechanical Engineering Expert

Read the following article.

ASHLAND oil tank failure

The background for the oil storage tank failure is as follows: the tank involved was a four million gallon circular tank which was built in 1940 for Ashland Oil Company in Cleveland, Ohio. Beginning in 1940, the tank was operated for many years in what was believed to have been heated oil service. It is unclear as to how many years the tank was not used, but in 1986 it was disassembled by cutting it apart into sections. Using oxy-acetylene torches the "old welds" were left in place as the tank was cut apart and the sections were moved to an Ashland Oil facility near Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Using shielded metal arc welding; tank was reassembled in 1987 and placed in a tank farm with many other similar tanks near the Monongahela River. When reassembled, tank joints were x-rayed and leak tested. Test results indicated that none of the welds need rework. The reassembled tank was 50 feet high and approximately 130 feet in diameter. A dike was built around the tank which will hold 150 percent of the tank capacity.

The tank was partly filled with diesel fuel in August 1987. On January 2, 1988, during its initial filling to capacity after reconstruction, the tank failed catastrophically creating a tidal wave of oil which sent nearly 4,000,000 gallons of diesel fuel into the Monongahela River causing a major environmental problem. The problem was so severe that the whole water supply for all of South Pittsburgh had to be shut down for two weeks. In addition to spilling thousands of gallons of oil in the river, the tidal wave of oil from the tank damaged other nearby tanks and structures as well. "A small, uncemented cinderblock shed about 120 feet distant had its walls literally swept away… leaving its roof lying neatly on the slab floor. "

Answer the following problems:

1. Decide what material composition was most probable used for the tank wall, document the properties of the material and then decide the most probable processing history for the manufacture and construction of the storage tank.  Discuss these issues as the initial paragraph(s) of your report.

2. Compute the probable wall thickness of the tank.

3. If a 3/8” thick plate was used, compute the exact flaw size which caused the brittle failure of the tank.

4. Use your calculations as a basis for a one or two paragraph discussion of the tank failure.

5. By calculation and design assumptions, find out if any of the following materials can be used for this tank, given the (improbable) assumption that all manufacturing and joining problems are solvable for the particular material.
        2024-T4 Aluminum
        Aluminum Oxide


• The tank was 80% full of oil when it failed.

• Suppose that the crack was oriented vertically and ignore stresses in vertical direction.

• Disregard end effects when calculating the stress in the tank wall.

• The oil height above the crack at the time of fracture was 35 ft.

• Suppose a medium carbon steel has a KIC = 49 ksi?in.

Show all calculations.

Mechanical Engineering, Engineering

  • Category:- Mechanical Engineering
  • Reference No.:- M91846

Have any Question? 

Related Questions in Mechanical Engineering

During the flow of 200 ft3nbsps of water through the

During the flow of 200 ft 3  /s of water through the hydraulic turbine shown, the pressure indicated by gage A is 12 psig. What should gage B read if the turbine is delivering 600 hp at 82% efficiency? Gage B is designed ...

1 for the pipe-flow-reducing section d1nbsp 8 cm d2nbsp 5

1. For the pipe-flow-reducing section D 1  = 8 cm, D 2  = 5 cm, and p 2  = 1 atm. If v 1  = 5 m/s and the manometer reading is h =58 cm, estimate the total force resisted by the flange bolts. 2. An open tank car as shown ...

1 determine the capillary rise for a water-air-glass

1. Determine the capillary rise for a water-air-glass interface at 40°C in a clean glass tube having a radius of 1 mm. 2. Determine the difference in pressure between the inside and outside of a soap film bubble at 20 °C ...

A uniform cantilever beam with triangular cross section is

A uniform cantilever beam with triangular cross section is loaded only due to its own weight (a load uniformly distributed along the length). What is the ratio of the maximum tensile normal stress to the maximum compress ...

Given the result of problem 67 estimate the magnitude of

Given the result of Problem 6.7, estimate the magnitude of the radial deflection of a pressurized cylinder as a fraction of its thickness Problem 6.7: Given that the hoop strain is likely to be a very small number, estim ...

Engineering skills project brief flume Engineering Skills Project Brief: Flume Ride

Engineering Skills Project Brief: Flume Ride Introduction Employers are constantly asking for engineering graduates who have good team skills, are problem solvers and are good communicators. On top of that, engineers nee ...

Equipment engineering and design structural failure

Equipment Engineering and Design Structural Failure Problem- Background - A 6 ton pressure vessel - see dimensioned drawing - was being lowered onto a "stillage"or temporary supporting structure for testing outside a fac ...

Magnet wire is single-strand wire with a thin insulation

Magnet wire is single-strand wire with a thin insulation layer (of enamel, varnish, glass, etc.) to prevent short circuits. In a production facility, copper (E = 120 GPa, σ ys = 70 MPa) magnet wire is to be coated with v ...

I need a proposal project for surface metrology asap i need

I need a proposal project for Surface Metrology ASAP. I need two documents: 1. Project outlines Proposal outlines (the instruction & template is in the attached Proposal for the project) should be 1 page 2. Final project ...

Need a 400 to 500 minimum word essay on 2 articles no

Need a 400 to 500 minimum word essay on 2 articles (No internet, just based on the articles) - You will need to do a compare and contrast essay where you compare an Old HVAC system with a New system and also old refriger ...

  • 4,153,160 Questions Asked
  • 13,132 Experts
  • 2,558,936 Questions Answered

Ask Experts for help!!

Looking for Assignment Help?

Start excelling in your Courses, Get help with Assignment

Write us your full requirement for evaluation and you will receive response within 20 minutes turnaround time.

Ask Now Help with Problems, Get a Best Answer

Section onea in an atwood machine suppose two objects of

SECTION ONE (a) In an Atwood Machine, suppose two objects of unequal mass are hung vertically over a frictionless

Part 1you work in hr for a company that operates a factory

Part 1: You work in HR for a company that operates a factory manufacturing fiberglass. There are several hundred empl

Details on advanced accounting paperthis paper is intended

DETAILS ON ADVANCED ACCOUNTING PAPER This paper is intended for students to apply the theoretical knowledge around ac

Create a provider database and related reports and queries

Create a provider database and related reports and queries to capture contact information for potential PC component pro

Describe what you learned about the impact of economic

Describe what you learned about the impact of economic, social, and demographic trends affecting the US labor environmen