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A bent Ni-Cu Monel 400 alloy tube, which operated as part of a pipeline in a petrochemical distillery, failed by through-thickness cracking. The pipeline was used to carry a stream of gaseous hydrocarbons containing hydrochloric acid (HCl) into a reaction tower. The tower provided a caustic solution (NaOH) to remove HCl from the stream, before the latter was directed to a burner. Metallographic examination showed that the cracks were intergranular and were frequently branched. Although nominal chemical composition of the component was found within the specified range, energy dispersive x-ray analysis (EDXA) indicated significant segregation of sulfur and chlorine...

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