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A shrunk-fit 18 Mn-5Cr steel retaining ring failed without warning during normal unit operation of a 380 MW electrical generator. The cause of the ring failure was determined to be intergranular stress-corrosion cracking (IGSCC) because of the high strength of the ring material and the presence of moist hydrogen used to cool the ring. Factors which promoted the failure were higher than normal strength levels in the ring material, lower than normal ring operating temperatures, possible moisture in the lubrication oil system, periodic poor performance of the hydrogen dryers, and a ring design which allowed water to become trapped...

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