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The Vital Importance of AST Plumb and Roundness: Ensuring Accuracy and Partnering with Gauge Point Calibration

Updated: Jun 6

Aboveground storage tanks (ASTs) are the backbone of bulk liquid storage across numerous industries, but especially so in the Petroleum, Wine, Beer, Spirits, and agricultural industries. Their structural integrity and precise volume measurements, combined with tank calibration and strapping charts, are paramount for safe and efficient operations. Two crucial factors that significantly impact both aspects are the storage tank shell plumb and roundness. This article explores why plumb and roundness matter for ASTs, the relevant API standards, and why Gauge Point Calibration is your trusted partner for ensuring accurate assessments.

Why Plumb Matters in ASTs:

  • Structural Integrity: An AST that is not perfectly plumb (i.e., leaning slightly) can put undue stress on its foundation and shell. Over time, this can lead to structural weaknesses, increasing the risk of leaks, spills, and even tank failure.

  • Accurate Calibration: A leaning shell or a tilting tank can compromise the accuracy of traditional strapping methods (API 2.2A) for volume calibration. The tank's out-of-plumb condition can affect the accuracy of tank strapping and capacity tables and lead to miscalculated volume measurements and increased stock loss.

Why Roundness Matters in ASTs:

  • Maintaining Capacity: A perfectly round tank ensures it can hold its maximum designed volume. Deviations from roundness, like bulges, dents/depressions, can reduce the tank's usable capacity, impacting inventory management and potentially leading to product shortages.

  • Structural Stability: An AST that is not perfectly round can experience uneven stress distribution, increasing the risk of developing weak points and potential tank failures like seal damage, or sinking of the floating roof.

API Standards and Plumb/Roundness Requirements:

  • API 653: This standard outlines recommended practices for tank inspection, repair, upgrading, and re-rating. API 653 emphasizes the importance of evaluating a tank's plumb and roundness during inspections to ensure its structural integrity and continued safe operation.

Why Choose Gauge Point Calibration for Plumb and Roundness Assessments:

  • Experienced Professionals: Our team of qualified inspectors possesses the expertise and tools to accurately assess the plumb and roundness of your ASTs.

  • Advanced Technology: We leverage cutting-edge technologies like laser scanning and 3D modeling to provide detailed and precise measurements of your tank's profile.

  • API-Compliant Inspections: Our inspections adhere to the stringent guidelines outlined in API 653, ensuring a comprehensive evaluation of your AST's condition.

  • Actionable Reports: We provide clear and concise reports outlining the plumb and roundness assessment results. These reports not only inform you of the tank's current state but also aid in developing a plan for corrective actions, if necessary.

  • Commitment to Safety: Your ASTs' safety is our priority. By identifying potential issues with plumb and roundness, we help you address them proactively, minimizing the risk of accidents and ensuring the continued safe operation of your tanks.

Partnering with Gauge Point Calibration

Regular assessments of your ASTs' plumb and roundness are crucial for maintaining their structural integrity, ensuring accurate volume measurements, and promoting long-term safe operations. Gauge Point Calibration offers the expertise, technology, and commitment to deliver accurate and actionable reports that empower you to make informed decisions regarding your ASTs.

Contact Gauge Point Calibration today! Let our team of experts help you safeguard your ASTs and ensure their continued safe and efficient operation for years to come.


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