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Course Outline


Tools & Methodologies

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Design and inspection codes of pressure equipment and specification for procurement of pressure equipment

  • ASME Viii Div1
  • Material selection
  • Limitations of codes
  • Manufacturing records
  • Inspection codes such as AS 3788 Pressure Equipment – in service inspection

Procedures required to prevent failures

  • Risk based inspection
  • Process control
  • Life assessment
  • Literature

Trouble shooting, failure analysis and root cause analysis

  • Need for failure investigation
  • Defining aims of investigation
  • Obtaining data
  • Need for expert advise
  • Failure analysis methods
  • Root cause analysis – causal loops

Examine detail on damage mechanisms and assessment of damage

  • API 571 “Damage mechanisms effecting fixed equipment in the refining industry”
  • High temperature: Creep, creep fatigue, carburization, HTHA
  • Corrosion: Stress Corrosion Cracking (SCC), pitting, general loss
  • Mechanical: Fatigue, overload, wear, erosion
  • API 579 “Fitness for service”

Repair procedures to ensure future success

  • Repair procedures
  • Specification of replacement
  • Material selection
  • Stress analysis and fitness for service
  • Specialised inspection

Develop and present the required outcomes of failure investigations

  • Reporting
  • Development of recommendations/action plans
  • Presentation to regulators, insurance etc.
  • Cost analysis

Case studies


A series of detailed case studies will be provided throughout this course.

The length of the case studies will very typically from 15–45 minutes but the course will be aimed on ensuring over 50% of the time is on case studies.

Each case study will cover details of the problem, the investigation carried out, discussion about possible scenarios, the actual recommendations made and the actions carried out to ensure future problem free operation.

The case studies will be chosen by assessing the participants’ needs, ensuring a range of failure mechanisms are covered such as corrosion, stress corrosion cracking, brittle overload, ductile overload, creep, hydrogen embrittlement, electrical damage etc.

In addition, participants may provide specific issues to be addressed in the course if required.

The following are examples of the case studies which can be provided:

  • Failure of boiler feed water heater due hydrogen/nitride cracking of P22 steel heat exchanger in high temperature ammonia
  • Failure of internals in ammonia converter
  • Risk based inspection of methanol, ammonia or refinery plants
  • Damage Nitric acid plant waste heat boilers
  • Waste heat boiler tube failure
  • Failure of high strength flange bolts on wellhead causing major blow out on gas production platform
  • Cracking of stainless steel heat exchanger tubes in cooling water in ammonia plant
  • Corrosion to admiralty brass heat exchanger
  • Brittle fracture of gas cylinder due to incorrect heat treatment
  • Fire in refinery due to blow out of pipe work as a result of rapid corrosion
  • Fire in port terminal pipe work due to electrical arcing
  • Overpressure in hydropower station penstock
  • Cracking of main steam header in thermal power station
  • Hydrogen cracking in duplex stainless steel welds on over shore platform pipe work
  • Defect in high pressure pipeline
  • Erosion damage to hydro power station due to erosion as a result of volcanic eruption
  • Hydrogen cracking in geothermal separator vessels
  • Risk of high temperature hydrogen attack in Methanol convertor
  • Cracking of bull tees in reformers
  • Corrosion/creep of tubes in refinery furnace
  • Corrosion and resurrection of hydro power station scroll case after 40 years
  • SCC cracking of power station boiler water seal
  • Creep failure of super heater tubing
  • Corrosion under insulation
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