Damage Mechanism Determination for API RP 571

Would you trust your teeth to a dentist who’s only read some books and taken a course?

One of the most important steps in the integrity management process (RBI, FFS, etc.) is determining the likely damage mechanisms that may occur. For refineries and chemical processing plants, API RP 571 provides the basic outline for this process along with a list of possible mechanisms and the conditions under which they occur. We combine this with our extensive experience in failure analysis to help you determine what damage mechanisms are most realistic in your facility.

Damage Mechanism Assessment: the Basis of Effective Integrity Management

The reality is that the probability of different damage mechanisms depends on many variables, including the operating conditions, materials, and environment. Then there are the potential effects of startup/shutdown, upset conditions, and contaminants that must also be accounted for. G2MT Labs metallurgists can provide assistance in identifying and understanding the likely mechanisms that can cause damage in all of these situations.

The damage mechanisms determination process typically includes:

  1. Review of process flow diagrams, maintenance records, failure analysis reports, and other documentation to evaluate the existing and potential damage mechanisms for each system
  2. Evaluation of the appropriate materials of construction (MOC) to resist degradation in each process and/or the expected corrosion rates of the existing MOCs
  3. Assessing the causes and extents of existing corrosion in the facilty
  4. Estimating the rate of future corrosion and damage mechanisms
  5. Identification of potential mitigation strategies to reduce future corrosion rates

Damage mechanisms affecting process equipment are a complex function of the materials of construction and the operating or environmental conditions, both internal and external. A proper understanding of the damage mechanism affecting process equipment is critical to any mechanical integrity program.

Consideration must be given to active damage mechanism that may be in effect, as well as potential damage mechanisms resulting from process upsets, changes in operating conditions, and the presence of certain contaminants which aggravate or induce damage.

In short, we’ll work closely with you, using science, research, and experience, to determine what types of damage are of concern and how to monitor/mitigate the problems.