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Comparison of Leak-Before-Break Assessment of Main Loop Piping Lines Fabricated of Different Materials

[+] Author Affiliations
Linwei Ma, Xiaotao Zheng, Yan Wang, Jiasheng He, Anqing Shu

Wuhan Institute of Technology, Wuhan, China

Paper No. PVP2016-63305, pp. V06AT06A037; 9 pages
  • ASME 2016 Pressure Vessels and Piping Conference
  • Volume 6A: Materials and Fabrication
  • Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, July 17–21, 2016
  • Conference Sponsors: Pressure Vessels and Piping Division
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-5042-8
  • Copyright © 2016 by ASME


Leak-Before-Break (LBB) assessment is used for the design of nuclear reactor coolant system main loop piping to lower the cost of construction and operation in China. In these applications, the materials of main loop piping lines are cast austenitic stainless steel (CASS) or wrought stainless steel (WSS) due to the different type of reactor design. According to US.NRC SRP3.6.3, LBB assessment includes two major calculations, such as critical crack size calculation and leakage flaw size calculation. The elastic-plastic instability analysis or plastic instability analysis is chosen to perform critical size calculation depending on material properties, especially fracture toughness. In this paper, LBB assessment in the guidance of SRP 3.6.3 was performed to evaluate main loop piping lines of CASS and WSS. The JR curve tests and the adjustment due to thermal aging are performed to achieve reasonable material properties. J integral/tearing modulus approach is used to determine critical crack size of CASS pipe and net section collapse (NSC) approach is used to determine critical crack size of WSS pipe. Leakage flaw size under 1gpm leakage detection capability is determined based on Henry’s homogeneous nonequilibrium critical flow model. In order to demonstrate that fatigue crack growth is not a potential source of pipe rupture for the evaluated piping lines, the fatigue crack growth of a postulated circumferential part-through-wall crack under nuclear power plant full life time operating transients and the fatigue crack growth of a circumferential through-wall crack under one time safe shutdown seismic are analyzed. And the LBB assessment procedure and results of CASS pipe and WSS pipe are compared.

Copyright © 2016 by ASME



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