ASME Boiler and Pressure Vessel Code (BPVC)

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The ASME International Boiler and Pressure Vessel Code (BPVC) is a code published by the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) which establishes safety rules and guidelines that apply to the design, fabrication, and inspection of boilers, pressure vessels, and nuclear power plant components during construction. The document consists of 11 sections and 15 subsections, each covering a different topic relating to boilers and pressure vessels. The code has been adopted, in part or in whole, by every state in the United States and every province in Canada, along with several of the United States’ municipalities and territories.

The ASME International Boiler and Pressure Vessel Code first began development in 1911 with the formation of the ASME Boiler Code Committee and was issued for the first time in 1914 and published for the first time in 1915. It was developed as a reaction to the outrage stemming from two shoe factories in Brockton and Lynn, Massachusetts in 1905 and 1906. It has grown extensively since then to encompass 28 books and several thousands of pages of materials.

The code covers an incredibly diverse range of topics including rules for the construction of both heating and power boilers, and the materials, both ferrous and nonferrous, that can be used for the same. It covers how to properly operate and care for both power and heating boilers and how to perform nondestructive examination (NDE) on them properly. It also discusses the construction of pressure vessels, including high, and fiber-reinforced plastic, pressure vessels, and the rules surrounding those as well. It talks about brazing and welding qualifications and the construction and service of transport tanks. Finally, it talks at length about the construction and inspection of components at a nuclear facility.

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Articles about ASME Boiler and Pressure Vessel Code (BPVC)
November/December 2023 Inspectioneering Journal

Not all operators apply the system design philosophy as intended by the ASME Code. Part of this reason could be due to confusion about how it is to be applied.

January/February 2023 Inspectioneering Journal

Undocumented pressure vessels without an ASME stamp or National Board registration are commonplace. Their potential risk and value are often poorly understood.

September/October 2019 Inspectioneering Journal

MSDs are an important, but often misunderstood, element of FFS analyses. This column will help readers understand what an MSD is and why it is so important to Fitness-For-Service analysis under API 579.

Authors: Greg Garic, P.E.
May/June 2018 Inspectioneering Journal

There is concern in the industry over recent findings of reduced toughness fittings and flanges at risk of brittle fracture. This article provides an overview; possible contributors; measures taken to address; and a proposed FFS approach to address...

March/April 2015 Inspectioneering Journal

An issue that arises frequently in the oil and gas industry is poor or missing documentation of pressure vessels. It is common in the industry to repurpose old equipment, bring equipment back into operation after a long period of time out of...

Authors: Paolo Torrado
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May/June 2014 Inspectioneering Journal

Inspections, repairs, modifications, or Fitness-For-Service (FFS) assessments on an old, unfired ASME Section VIII (Div. 1) pressure vessel - Which ASME Section VIII (Div. 1) Code Edition should you use?

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