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Effects of Weld Geometry on Residual Stress and Crack Driving Force for Centerhole Control Rod Drive Mechanism Nozzles: Part I — Weld Residual Stress

[+] Author Affiliations
Wentao Cheng, David L. Rudland, Gery Wilkowski

Engineering Mechanics Corporation of Columbus, Columbus, OH

Wallace Norris

U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Rockville, MD

Paper No. PVP2005-71077, pp. 11-16; 6 pages
  • ASME 2005 Pressure Vessels and Piping Conference
  • Volume 6: Materials and Fabrication
  • Denver, Colorado, USA, July 17–21, 2005
  • Conference Sponsors: Pressure Vessels and Piping Division
  • ISBN: 0-7918-4191-X | eISBN: 0-7918-3763-7
  • Copyright © 2005 by ASME


The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) has undertaken a program to assess the integrity of control rod drive mechanism (CRDM) nozzles in existing plants that are not immediately replacing their RPV heads. This two-part paper summarizes some of the efforts undertaken on the behalf of the U.S.NRC for the development of detailed residual stress and circumferential crack-driving force solutions to be used in probabilistic determinations of the time from detectable leakage to failure. In this first paper, the finite element (FE) simulations were conducted to investigate the effects of weld geometry on the residual stresses in the J-weld for a centerhole CRDM nozzle. The variables of weld geometry included three weld heights (weld sizes) and three groove angles for each weld height while keeping the same weld size. The analysis results indicate that the overall weld residual stress decreases as the groove angle increases and higher residual stress magnitude is associated with certain weld height. The results also reveal that the axial residual stresses in the Alloy 600 tube are very sensitive to the weld height, and that the tube hoop stresses above the J-weld root increase with the increasing weld height.

Copyright © 2005 by ASME



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