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Recommended Velocities in Steam Systems

The steam velocity in a steam distribution system should be within certain limits to avoid excessive wear and tear

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The steam velocities or speeds below are commonly recommended as acceptable for steam distribution systems:

Recommended Velocities in Steam Systems
Steam SystemVelocity
(m/s)(ft/s)
Saturated Steam - high pressure 25 - 40 82 - 131
Saturated Steam - medium and low pressure 30-40 99 - 131
Saturated Steam at peak load < 50 < 164
Steam and Water mix < 25 < 82
Superheated Steam 35 - 100 100 - 300
  • Saturated steam - low pressure - is common for heating services and secondary process pipes.
  • Saturated steam - high pressure - is common in powerhouse, boiler and main process lines.
  • Superheated steam is common in power generation and turbine plants.
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Related Topics

  • Pipe Sizing

    Sizing of steam and condensate pipe lines - pressure loss, recommended velocity, capacity and more.

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