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Becht Engineering Blog

In this section of the site contributing authors submit interesting articles relating to the various services, industries and research & development efforts of Becht Engineering.

Importance of Codes and Standards for Process Safety

Importance of Codes and Standards for Process Safety
Compliance with the Process Safety Management rule, OSHA 1910.119, is a requirement for plants processing certain highly hazardous materials exceeding threshold quantities. The rule requires the owner to demonstrate all equipment has been purchased and installed in accordance with recognized industry standards. Maintenance practices must also be according to Recognized and Generally Accepted Good Engineering Practice (RAGAGEP) . The owner must document this information as part of the Process Safety Information and Mechanical Integrity program for the plant. Use of Codes The use of codes and standards can help assure compliance with the rule. For example ASME Section VIII is the recognized code for construction of pressure vessels operating in the United States at pressures over 15 psi. It would be difficult to debate vessels could be designed and built to other requirements and still be acceptable under the PSM rule. Codes such as the ASME code have been developed and...
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ASME B31.3 - Substantive Changes in the 2016 Edition

ASME B31.3 - Substantive Changes in the 2016 Edition
In addition to the many clarifications, updated references to codes and standards, updates to basic allowable stresses, and added listed materials, there are several substantive changes to the 2016 Edition of ASME B31.3, Process Piping, which is scheduled to be issued on January 4, 2017. These changes are: Severe Cyclic Conditions The definition for severe cyclic conditions was changed. Old Definition: conditions applying to specific piping components or joints in which SE computed in accordance with para. 319.4.4 exceeds 0.8 S A (as defined in para. 302.3.5), and the equivalent number of cycles ( N in para. 302.3.5) exceeds 7000; or other conditions that the designer determines will produce an equivalent effect. New Definition: conditions applying to specific piping components or joints for which the owner or the designer determines that construction to better resist fatigue loading is warranted The new definition is expected to lead to a more appropriate application...
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Recent Comments
Guest — Mindy

2016 Edition - Category M

In addition to the percentage change from 20% to 100%, they have also included branch connection conforming to 328.5.4F (Integrall... Read More
Thursday, 09 May 2019 11:32
Don Frikken

2016 Edition - Category M

In my opinion, doing as you suggest would not comply with the rule. The Code requires the welds to be radiographically or ultrason... Read More
Thursday, 09 May 2019 14:37
Don Frikken

Brother in law

For B31.3 piping, one welder can finish all of the passes for a weld.
Tuesday, 17 April 2018 19:14
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Mentoring Young Process Engineers

Mentoring Young Process Engineers
Today’s young process engineers have tools available to them that we “old timers” only dreamed about.  Although smaller and some medium sized companies will not have the items listed below, most large refining and or petrochemical operations have the following: Real-time and historical plant operating data available on his/her desk top computers; Real-time and historical plant laboratory data available on his/her desk top computer; Access to the plant DCS control schematics showing current operating details (though no ability to change set points, etc.); Access to powerful process simulation software; Up-to-date (mostly) P&ID’s and unit piping/structural drawings available with the click of a mouse. The list of available resources to today’s younger process engineer without leaving his or her office goes on and on.  Couple this with the trend to large centralized control rooms for safety and efficiency reasons and you easily end up with one large negative to all this progress....
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Recent comment in this post
Chris Zielewski

Good one

Excellent observations, and I got a chuckle out of this: "So I suggested that we talk to an operator that looked a lot more like ... Read More
Tuesday, 05 July 2016 11:40
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Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) Confirms Cause of Deaerator Cracking

Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) Confirms Cause of Deaerator Cracking
CFD was used to confirm that poor design of the steam inlet nozzle was the main contributor to deaerator head to shell weld cracking, and confirmed proposed design improvements.  This recent Becht project illustrates one of the causes of deaerator cracking. A through-wall crack had been found at the head-to-shell junction at the steam inlet end of the drum. This crack was attributed to corrosion fatigue, a common occurrence in deaerators. The crack was most likely initiated at a weld surface defect on the I.D. of the drum and grew with time. The daily operating cycles of the drum during periods of reduced steam demand and thermal stresses which we attributed to a poorly designed steam inlet nozzle were the main contributors to the crack growth.   A large diameter superheated steam inlet nozzle extended through the head of the drum terminating 18” into the vessel. The steam exited through a...
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