EPICS @ Purdue
2016-2017 Global Community: Vacuum Sealed Pipes
Team Members

According to the Institute for Business and Home Safety, claim payments by all insurance companies in the past decade for [water pipes freezing and breaking] have exceeded $4 billion. source

One potential solution is to vacuum seal pipes to slow down heat transfer from the water inside the pipes to the ambient air. This will be accomplished with a double hulled pipe containing an insulating vacuum barrier.

In order to overcome the problem of ruining the vacuum seal while cutting to install pipe, we intend to manufacture pipes in small segments and thermally isolate each connection to reduce thermal transfer.

Our solution will come at an upfront cost, but we project it will ultimately save money by increasing the lifespan of pipes, especially those found in unheated portions of a house, such as in garages and attics.

Problem Statement 1:
Millions of dollars are spent in Pennsylvania alone repairing ruptured and cracked pipes due to freezing. Pipes are susceptible to freezing and there are currently a very limited methods available to prevent this high cost problem.

Proof of concept design: 3D printing

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3D Printing proof of concept design
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Final proof of concept design
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End cap of proof of concept design
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Water testing...
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Water testing