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Title: Methods to combat liquid metal embrittlement in cryogenic aluminum heat exchangers

Abstract

Liquid metal embrittlement (LME) is a rare but potentially catastrophic failure mechanism for chemical process equipment. Aluminum heat exchangers that process natural gas liquids are particularly at risk due to mercury contamination in natural gas feedstocks. Mechanisms of liquid metal attack peculiar to the Al/Hg system include amalgamation, amalgam corrosion, LME and intergranular attack that is preferential to weldments. The paper reports the results of a program directed at prevention and remediation of liquid metal attack of cryogenic aluminum heat exchangers. The specific topics discussed are (1) detection of liquid metal embrittlement using acoustic emission techniques (2) a chemical process to remove mercury from contaminated equipment (3) surface treatment methods to prevent mercury attack of equipment exposed to mercury (4) methods to assess the condition of the oxide in aluminum equipment. In general, corrosion and cracking of aluminum can be mitigated by several engineering approaches. Metallurgical selection of nonsusceptible alloys, choice of proper welding procedures and surface treatments to strengthen the oxide can be utilized when new equipment is fabricated. For contaminated equipment, selective oxidation and complexation of mercury can be utilized to prevent mercury attack and to remove existing amalgams, LME can be detected using AE to assist decisionmore » making for critical components handling liquefied natural gas. Surface condition also can be assessed using capacitance techniques to further aid decisions regarding remediation.« less

Authors:
;  [1];  [2]
  1. Central Environmental, Inc., Houston, TX (United States)
  2. CLI International, Cypress, TX (United States)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
288685
Report Number(s):
CONF-9404309-
Journal ID: ISSN 1066-1557; TRN: IM9639%%394
Resource Type:
Book
Resource Relation:
Conference: 6. ethylene producers conference, Atlanta, GA (United States), 17-21 Apr 1994; Other Information: PBD: 1994; Related Information: Is Part Of 6. ethylene producers` conference: Proceedings. Volume 3; PB: 721 p.
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
36 MATERIALS SCIENCE; 03 NATURAL GAS; ALUMINIUM; EMBRITTLEMENT; CORROSION; MERCURY; CORROSIVE EFFECTS; HEAT EXCHANGERS; ACOUSTIC EMISSION TESTING; SURFACE TREATMENTS; CLEANING; LIQUEFIED NATURAL GAS; MATERIALS HANDLING; MITIGATION; ALUMINIUM OXIDES; WELDED JOINTS; PROTECTIVE COATINGS; CRYOGENIC FLUIDS; NUMERICAL DATA

Citation Formats

Wilhelm, S M, McArthur, A, and Kane, R D. Methods to combat liquid metal embrittlement in cryogenic aluminum heat exchangers. United States: N. p., 1994. Web.
Wilhelm, S M, McArthur, A, & Kane, R D. Methods to combat liquid metal embrittlement in cryogenic aluminum heat exchangers. United States.
Wilhelm, S M, McArthur, A, and Kane, R D. Sat . "Methods to combat liquid metal embrittlement in cryogenic aluminum heat exchangers". United States.
@article{osti_288685,
title = {Methods to combat liquid metal embrittlement in cryogenic aluminum heat exchangers},
author = {Wilhelm, S M and McArthur, A and Kane, R D},
abstractNote = {Liquid metal embrittlement (LME) is a rare but potentially catastrophic failure mechanism for chemical process equipment. Aluminum heat exchangers that process natural gas liquids are particularly at risk due to mercury contamination in natural gas feedstocks. Mechanisms of liquid metal attack peculiar to the Al/Hg system include amalgamation, amalgam corrosion, LME and intergranular attack that is preferential to weldments. The paper reports the results of a program directed at prevention and remediation of liquid metal attack of cryogenic aluminum heat exchangers. The specific topics discussed are (1) detection of liquid metal embrittlement using acoustic emission techniques (2) a chemical process to remove mercury from contaminated equipment (3) surface treatment methods to prevent mercury attack of equipment exposed to mercury (4) methods to assess the condition of the oxide in aluminum equipment. In general, corrosion and cracking of aluminum can be mitigated by several engineering approaches. Metallurgical selection of nonsusceptible alloys, choice of proper welding procedures and surface treatments to strengthen the oxide can be utilized when new equipment is fabricated. For contaminated equipment, selective oxidation and complexation of mercury can be utilized to prevent mercury attack and to remove existing amalgams, LME can be detected using AE to assist decision making for critical components handling liquefied natural gas. Surface condition also can be assessed using capacitance techniques to further aid decisions regarding remediation.},
doi = {},
url = {https://www.osti.gov/biblio/288685}, journal = {},
issn = {1066-1557},
number = ,
volume = ,
place = {United States},
year = {1994},
month = {12}
}

Book:
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