Pressure Vessels Explained – Uses Across Healthcare & Energy

Pressure vessels can be small or large containers usually manufactured from metals that are made to withstand fluids under pressure often above or below ambient temperatures. They are used to hold gases or liquids at higher pressures than normal or at partial or full vacuum. They are available in a variety of sizes, and are used in a range of sectors, from healthcare to renewable energy and nuclear power.

In this blog post, we will be exploring the different types of pressure vessel that LTI manufactures for the healthcare and energy sectors.

Healthcare Sector

Hospitals, pharmaceuticals, and medical device companies use different types of pressure vessels to store chemicals and preserve samples. They are designed and manufactured to meet rigorous industry regulations. Highly versatile, pressure vessels that we make for these sectors use the purest materials such as stainless steel and high purity aluminium, welded together with precision by our experienced team of technicians.

Below are a few examples of pressure vessels commonly used in healthcare.


A cryostat is a container used in hospitals and laboratories to store and preserve tissue samples in highly controlled conditions. They are an essential piece of equipment in clinical pathology, histology, and medical research. Many cryostats use liquid nitrogen or helium to freeze samples at temperatures from -150 to absolute zero.

Cryostats include specimen holders, freezing shelves, and microtome blades, for cutting tissue into microscopic slices. They include customisable settings, so conditions can be controlled with precision.

Cryostats are an integral part of MRI scanners used in hospitals. Liquid helium is required to achieve clear imaging, and cryostats keep the helium at a consistent cold temperature. LTi Metaltech has long been the leading manufacturer of cryogenic pressure systems used in Siemens MRI scanners, manufacturing over 2000 pressure and vacuum vessel sets per annum which are distributed worldwide.

Heat Exchangers

Suitable for a range of applications, heat exchangers are essential components for a range of medical devices, from anesthesia machines and ventilators to dialysis devices. They play a big part in patient treatments, and overall wellbeing dependent on temperature control and the effectiveness of medical devices. Common settings that use heat exchangers in healthcare include:

  • MRI cooling systems
  • Neonatal incubators
  • Surgical procedures
  • Regulation of gases and fluids

Sterilisation Tanks

Also known as an autoclave, sterilisation tanks are used to keep medical instruments and equipment sterilized, and free from harmful bacteria, to prevent the spread of infection. They expose equipment to temperatures as high as 134 degrees Celsius. This is to protect patients, healthcare workers and ensuring the effectiveness of treatments.

Energy Sector

Renewable energy, oil and gas, and related sectors, different kinds of pressure vessels are used to store high volumes of gas and liquids in pressurised conditions. Different types of pressure vessel in the energy sectors include:

  • Boilers – these pressure vessels are found in power plants and industrial settings to generate power for manufacturing and other processes. They are engineered to withstand extreme heat for long periods of time.
  • Storage tanks – used to store substances such as crude oil, natural gas, and fuel, storage tanks are an integral part of transportation.
  • Heat exchangers – commonly found at power plants, heat exchangers are a vital part of steam generators, oil refineries and steam generators. They are used in energy production and oil refining processes.

Using the latest technology, we have a solid track record of producing the best quality materials with accuracy and precision. Click here to find out more about our full range of services.