Pulsations & Vibrations

Reciprocating Compressors

About the course

This course teaches you fundamental knowledge and understanding of pressure pulsations in piping due to reciprocating compressors in the context of API 618 analyses.

By means of several real-life case studies you are thought the details of how pulsations are caused by compressors and what their consequences can be. Associated assessment methods such as pulsation analysis using software are discussed by the instructor as well as conformity checks for the pulsations and resulting vibrations. Possible mitigation measures and good design practices are provided.

Discussions and analyses will be illustrated using the software BOSpulse. No knowledge of this software is required.

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4 modules



1-yr access


Course Objective

To provide piping professionals with a solid understanding of pressure pulsation phenomena and evaluation methods.” 

Program & Details

  1. Welcome & Your instructor

  2. Content Overview

  3. How to use this course

  4. Questions Forum

  1. Pressure pulsations Foundations – Part 1

  2. Pressure pulsations Foundations – Part 2

  3. Shaking forces due to pulsations

  4. Periodic excitations in piping systems

  5. Pulsation control in piping systems

  6. Acoustic resonance in piping systems

  7. Acoustic resonance typical problematic modes

  8. Orifice plates to change modes

  9. General considerations for piping systems

  10. Recap of Module 1

A sample of the first module is available for free, so you can learn more about the teaching style and understand if the course fits your needs.

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  1. Case Introduction 

  2. Operating modes

  3. Result discussion

  4. Damper design 

  1. Vibration risks in piping systems

  2. Types of vibrations in piping systems

  3. Mechanical excitation due excitation source

  4. Single DOF systems Degree Of Freedom

  5. Mechanical response to pressure pulsations

  6. Mechanical eigenmodes in piping systems

  7. Evaluating vibration in piping systems

  8. Mechanical response versus acoustic response

  1. Case Introduction 

  2. Compressor harmonics

  3. Mechanical resonance

  4. System modifications

  5. Conclusions 

  1. Course evaluation survey

  2. Your Personal Certificate

  3. Rate this course

  4. Related resources

  5. Follow up


After this course, you..
  • understand what pressure pulsations due to reciprocating compressors are and what consequences they can have,
  • are familiar with calculation methods for analyzing pressure pulsations,
  • know the basics of performing API 618 pulsation analysis,
  • have an understanding of assessing associated vibrations,
  • know what mitigation measures are available and when they are applicable,
  • have seen several real-life cases (2 in much detail).

Intended for

  • Anyone working piping systems connected to reciprocating compressors,
  • Those involved with piping systems prone to vibrations,
  • Engineers working with the API 618.

Prerequisites and level

  • Basic understanding of piping systems. 
  • Discussions and analyses will be illustrated using the software BOSpulse.
  • No knowledge of this software is required.
  • Level: Intermediate

Selected course format


Price on request
  • Face-to-face with instructors
  • On-site or in Rijswijk
  • Printed course materials
  • Lunch included
  • For teams


200 / user
  • Self-learning modules
  • Online discussion forum
  • Live sessions with instructor
  • 1-year access
  • For individual learning


  • Video lectures,

  • Video demonstrations,

  • Discussions forum with other participants & instructor.

The majority of training material are videos. These are not available for download, but can be accessed directly with your account on the portal. Apart from quizzes the exercise files can be downloaded. These can include .pdf files with the exercise questions, software models or other file types. 

You receive 1-year unlimited access to the course. This allows you to watch content again if this is beneficial for your work projects.

We encourage participants to submit feedback and questions in the Discussions Forum of the course. These are either answered directly in the forum or form the basis for new videos that are added to the online course on a regular basis.

Participants receive 1-year unlimited access to the course including new videos that are added during this year. Participants receive an email notification upon addition of new course videos.

No software is required for participants of this course.

Demonstrations are provided using the software BOSpulse, but having access to this software is not required.

If your computer and internet connection is able to play videos online (YouTube) you will be able to follow the course. Note that almost all browsers are supported, except for Internet Explorer.

Yes, this course qualifies for PDH hours as per the NCEES CPC Guidelines.

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