Failures in Superheater and Reheat Outlet headers are relatively infrequent. Unfortunately, when a failure does occur in these components, the necessary repairs may require several weeks to complete. Due to the substantial costs associated with any forced outage, it is imperative to perform routine inspections of headers. In this manner, conditions with the potential to result in failures can be identified, monitored, and addressed before they fail during service resulting in a forced outage. The root cause of failures in high-temperature headers can be caused by any one or a combination of the following four factors:
1. Design Deficiencies
2. Manufacturing or Material Defects
3. Fabrication or Erection Defects
4. Service-Related Deterioration
In more than 2,500 high-temperature headers that Thielsch Engineering has inspected, the vast majority of failures are the result of Service-Related Deterioration either acting alone or in conjunction with the other three factors. In all instances, Thielsch Engineering has developed and implemented repair procedures that have returned these components back to safe and reliable service. The principal types of Service-Related Deterioration mechanisms encountered in high-temperature headers are creep, fatigue, creep-fatigue, microstructural changes, and applied bending stresses. The location and characteristics of the damage can vary. However, they predominantly fall within several categories. To learn more about these characteristics and locations download the entire technical bullletin click here.
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