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A group of control valves that regulate production in a field of sour gas wellheads performed satisfactorily for three years before pits and cracks were detected during an inspection. One of the valves was examined using chemical and microstructural analysis to determine the cause of failure and provide preventive measures. The valve body was made of A216-WCC cast carbon steel. Its inner surface was covered with cracks stemming from surface pits. Investigators concluded that the failure was caused by a combination of hydrogen-induced corrosion cracking and sulfide stress-corrosion cracking. Based on test data and cost, A217-WC9 cast Cr–Mo steel would be a better alloy for the application.

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