Weld Consulting - HeaterWeld Consulting - Heater Closeup ImageHX - Three Point T ConfigurationHX - Metallurgical Image

O’Donnell Consulting performed an analysis and redesign on a heater that had a limited structural life. The heater was constructed of .025 inch thick stainless steel. The configuration includes an edge weld joint type, where two .025 sheets are placed side-by-side and the top surfaces are welded. When this is connected to the header, a three point T weld joint configuration is created by the intersection of the radial and tangential faces of the header and tube sheet. Many fatigue cracks initiated in this area.

Imperfections in fabrication processes such as welding, forming and assembling parts for welding and cutting can contribute to the concentration of strains in localized areas to a degree that significantly shortens the fatigue life of a fabricated unit. Sharp corners, large weld profiles, and undercutting also reduce fatigue life. An examination of the fabricators processes was undertaken. We then made recommendations in the manufacturing process to reduce the likelihood of early fatigue failures.


Related Projects
Failure Analysis on Cracked Tube to Tubesheet Welds
Assessment of Welding Procedures Used to Attach Appendages to P91 Heavy Wall Pipe

Similar Services
Weld Consulting
Manufacturing Consulting

Links to Engineering Resources
Our Engineering Team
Publications – Heat Exchangers, Pressure Vessels, Welds and Other Applications, Fatigue, Elevated Temperature

(877) 741-5500

Scroll to Top