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The Importance of High Energy Piping Support Maintenance to Enhance System Useful Life

[+] Author Affiliations
Samuel A. Huff

Burns & McDonnell, Chesterfield, MO

John P. Leach, Daniel S. Vail

Burns & McDonnell, Kansas City, MO

Paper No. POWER2015-49648, pp. V001T06A005; 4 pages
  • ASME 2015 Power Conference collocated with the ASME 2015 9th International Conference on Energy Sustainability, the ASME 2015 13th International Conference on Fuel Cell Science, Engineering and Technology, and the ASME 2015 Nuclear Forum
  • ASME 2015 Power Conference
  • San Diego, California, USA, June 28–July 2, 2015
  • Conference Sponsors: Power Division
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-5660-4
  • Copyright © 2015 by ASME


As part of the design basis of any piping system utilized to convey materials, pipe supports are required to ensure those pipes remain in their designed locations and do not overly expand or move due to sustained or occasional loads. These loads represent the total forces and moments in the piping components and as a result create stresses that affect the life of the component. Proper design and maintenance of these supports per the applicable codes and standards provide a reasonable life expectancy for the piping systems.

This presentation will review the various codes and standards utilized for both pipe support design and maintenance. A high level overview of what information must be obtained to perform an analysis and meet ASME B31.1 Power Piping code requirements when modifying piping systems will be presented. Specific inputs to system design and computational software including material properties, stress intensification factors (SIF), thicknesses and tolerances, pressures, temperatures, insulation, coatings, the occasional loads, etc. will be discussed. Guidelines will be discussed for determining what piping modifications warrant a full pipe stress analysis to be performed. Recommendations for pipe support maintenance inspections will be provided to facilitate increased life expectancies of subject piping systems. The mandatory requirements of ASME B31.1 Chapter VII will be discussed, as well as recommendations from the non-mandatory appendix. Implementing maintenance programs at existing facilities will be discussed. Step by step recommendations for how to apply these guidelines within a long-term life extension program will be given. Tolerances and general guidelines associated with these programs will also be discussed.

Finally, common pipe support failures, what they can affect, and how to look for early indicators of fatigue or failure will be covered.

Copyright © 2015 by ASME



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