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In Russia, there's a special term for a pipe that is not circular in its section: "a profiled pipe" (профильная труба). There's even a Wikipedia page for it: профильная труба. Such pipes come in a wide variety of sizes and usually have an oval, square or rectangular section ("profile" in Russian), but other kinds of sections are possible.

I wonder what is the common cover-all technical term describing "any kind of non-circular pipe".

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Example of usage:

Pervouralsk New Pipe Plant produces a range of non-circular pipes, including pipes of variable cross-section.

(Also asked on ELL SE)

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For structural purposes these are usually called Hollow Structural Sections (HSS). For non-structural purposes Mechanical Tubing is often used.

In Europe the main body that deals with structural design of these is CIDECT, who have a series of useful design guides. The equivalent would probably be the Steel Tube Institute in the USA who also deal with non-structural components.

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  • $\begingroup$ I'd have gone for simply "Tube" rather than "mechanical tubing". Hollow Structural Section is also a good answer. Which is better depends on the audience. $\endgroup$
    – AndyT
    Jun 13 '16 at 14:21

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