Vermont Patent of the Month – May 2023

In the world of manufacturing plants, continuous operation is crucial to minimize costs and maintain product quality. However, making modifications or improvements to these facilities can be challenging, especially when it comes to pressurized duct systems used to transport corrosive substances. One innovative solution to this problem is the hot tap system developed by Fab-Tech Inc.

Fab-Tech has designed a branch line connector specifically for internally-coated duct systems. This connector consists of several key components that work together to provide a reliable and efficient solution. The inner flange of the connector is shaped to mate with the inner surface of the duct wall surrounding an opening, while the outer flange mates with the outer surface of the duct wall. Between these flanges, inner and outer gasket members are positioned, effectively sealing the edge of the opening in the duct wall.

To ensure a secure connection, Fab-Tech has incorporated means for securing the inner and outer flanges together on the duct wall. This securing mechanism, which can be positioned between the gasket members, includes threaded, blind holes arranged around the inner flange. Corresponding male threaded members are designed to be received in these blind holes, along with corresponding holes in the outer flange.

A noteworthy aspect of this branch line connector is the use of compression to create a tight seal. The inner gasket member is compressed between the inner and outer flanges, while the outer gasket member is compressed between the inner flange and the duct wall during installation. This compression ensures a secure and leak-proof connection between the branch line and the duct system.

Fab-Tech has also taken corrosion resistance into account. The inner flange and inner surfaces of the outer flange are coated with a corrosion-resistant material, such as fluoropolymer, to protect against the corrosive substances transported within the duct system.

This hot tap system and method developed by Fab-Tech opens up new possibilities for modifying pressurized duct systems without the need for complete shutdowns. Based in Colchester, Vermont, Fab-Tech has been setting the industry standard for safe and reliable corrosive fume exhaust duct systems designed for reduced total installed costs (material+labor), easy installation in ALL weather conditions, and elimination of 100% of lifetime maintenance compared to alternative products.

Are you developing new technology for an existing application? Did you know your development work could be eligible for the R&D Tax Credit and you can receive up to 14% back on your expenses? Even if your development isn’t successful your work may still qualify for R&D credits (i.e. you don’t need to have a patent to qualify). To find out more, please contact a Swanson Reed R&D Specialist today or check out our free online eligibility test.

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