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One of the coils in the radiant section of a primary reformer furnace used in an ammonia plant was found leaking. The bottom of one of seven outlet headers (made of ASME SA-452, grade TP316H, stainless steel) was revealed during examination to be ruptured. It was revealed by metallurgical examination that it had failed as a result of intergranular fissuring and oxidation (creep rupture). The ruptured area revealed that the header had failed by conventional long-time creep rupture as a result of exposure to operating temperatures probably between 900 and 955 deg C. Three samples from different sections (ruptured...

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