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Type 304L and 316L HIP Powder Processing for PWR Components: Design and Manufacturing Benefits and Safety Case Progress

[+] Author Affiliations
W. Barry Burdett

Rolls-Royce plc, Derby, UK

Paper No. PVP2010-25209, pp. 815-820; 6 pages
  • ASME 2010 Pressure Vessels and Piping Division/K-PVP Conference
  • ASME 2010 Pressure Vessels and Piping Conference: Volume 6, Parts A and B
  • Bellevue, Washington, USA, July 18–22, 2010
  • Conference Sponsors: Pressure Vessels and Piping Division
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-49255 | eISBN: 978-0-7918-3878-5
  • Copyright © 2010 by Rolls-Royce plc


Hot Isostatic Pressing (HIP) has been used for many years to consolidate porosity in cast metal shapes to improve mechanical properties. When applied to fine metal powders, it is possible to produce Near Net Shape (NNS) items and more complex geometry components that are fully dense and offer an attractive set of properties at reduced cost. NNS items manufactured from powder deliver cost savings by reducing initial material usage and subsequent machining costs. Powder production and HIP processing are automated methods, which provide protection against forging route obsolescence. Setup costs are lower and batch sizes smaller, which makes the process particularly well suited to small numbers of high integrity components. HIPped powder microstructures are isotropic and equiaxed, with uniformly fine grain sizes not normally achieved in heavy section components, which facilitates ultrasonic NDE examination. Improved features to facilitate NDE are readily incorporated into the HIP assembly. Inclusion contents are lower and of more benign geometry, easing fracture assessment. Use of the technology has grown, particularly in the offshore oil industry where it is already established in high integrity applications, particularly in place of welded joints. Take-up in the more conservative nuclear industry has been slow. The quality of HIPped powder items can provide through life cost savings since there is greater assurance of structural integrity compared to welded or wrought components. In a broad programme of testing, Rolls-Royce has established that HIPped powder 316L/304L components, in items up to several tons in weight, have equivalent or slightly better strength, toughness and corrosion resistance than conventional forgings. Rolls-Royce now has a robust methodology in place to develop safety cases and is extending the number of applications in pressure boundary components on current and future classes of equipment. A strength-in-depth argument has been endorsed by external approval organisations and is supporting current submarine build programmes. Other applications in the growing civil nuclear market are now under consideration. A plan for developing an ASME Code Case for Powder HIP is being considered. This paper presents an update on the implementation process.

Copyright © 2010 by Rolls-Royce plc



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