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Overview of ASME PCC-1 - Guidelines for Pressure Boundary Bolted Flange Joint Assembly

ASME PCC-1, Guidelines for Pressure Boundary Bolted Flange Joint Assembly (BFJA), is a standard created and published by the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME). Published in November of 2013, PCC-1 replaces the first edition, which was published in 2000.

This standard applies to pressure-boundary flanged joints with ring-type gaskets that are entirely within the circle enclosed by the bolt holes and with no contact outside the circle. The guidelines within the standard may also be used to develop joint assembly procedures for a broad range of sizes and service as well. Guidance on troubleshooting BFJAs not providing leak-tight performance is also provided in this document.

This standard gives directions for the training and qualification of bolted joint assembly personnel. It also covers the cleaning and examination of flange and fastener contact surfaces, the alignment of flanged joints, the installation of gaskets, and the lubrication of working surfaces. The installation, numbering, and tightening of bolts are all covered by ASME PCC-1 as well, as is the tightening sequence. The final topics covered are target torque determination, joint pressure and tightness testing, records, and joint disassembly. There are also several appendices that provide important information and guidelines as well.
 
Compared to the previous edition ASME PCC-1, the 2013 edition has gone through many changes, including the newly added Appendix A, which contains significant guidance for the levels of training and experience required for technicians working on BFJAs. There are now three major levels of qualifications; all requiring different degrees of training, experience and assessment. One can only qualify for ASME PCC-1 once all three levels have been completed.
 
ASME PCC-1 also now outlines the extensive requirements for the training of bolted joint personnel, including qualified bolting specialists, qualified senior bolting specialists, and qualified senior bolting instructors. Also, training will now take much longer than previous bolted training programs, to cover all of the requirements.  For example, although only five days are required for the foundational module of the training curriculum, the training requirements from ASME include more than 200 individual topics which are all expected to be covered during the training.

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Related Topics

ASME B31 ASME Boiler and Pressure Vessel Code (BPVC) ASME FFS-1 (Fitness-for-Service) ASME PCC-2 - Repair of Pressure Equipment and Piping ASME PCC-3 - Inspection Planning Using Risk-based Methods

Relevant Links

Articles about ASME PCC-1 - Guidelines for Pressure Boundary Bolted Flange Joint Assembly
  • July/August 2016 Inspectioneering Journal
    By Neil Ferguson at Hydratight

    Joint integrity management remains at the top of many operators’ priority list.  The discipline considers risk and drives safety to ensure we learn necessary lessons from past catastrophic failures, such as the Piper Alpha explosion in 1988, where leaking gas condensate ignited and killed 167 of the 229 people on board the offshore rig.

  • May/June 2016 Inspectioneering Journal
    By Neil Ferguson at Hydratight

    Large scale capital projects present a myriad of challenges for owner-users in the oil and gas and petrochemical industries. Budgets are constantly being stretched and project deadlines are often exceeded. One area that deserves attention from all parties involved is joint integrity management.

  • July/August 2015 Inspectioneering Journal
    By Neil Ferguson at Hydratight

    With the increasing demand for oil, gas, and petrochemical products in a highly competitive market, products and services irrespective of their origin must satisfy customer quality requirements. Additionally, the needs to ensure quality control and regulatory compliance are now more scrutinized and critical than ever.

  • May/June 2014 Inspectioneering Journal
    By Neil Ferguson at Hydratight

    In November 2013, ASME released its updated PCC-1 guidelines for pressure boundary bolted flange joint assemblies. Contained within the document is Appendix A, which represents a major change from the previous 2010 release and is considered to be one of the most critically important changes for BFJA technicians, operators, and other industry professionals.

  • March/April 2014 Inspectioneering Journal
    By Neil Ferguson at Hydratight

    Joint integrity programs (JIP) should be an integral part of every refinery, petrochemical, production, or other industrial-complex facility operations.

  • Partner Content

    Properly anticipating and finding the damage in your facility is no small task, and spending millions of dollars on inspection may not be getting you anywhere if it’s not the right inspection processes. PinnacleART can use industry best practice models and corrosion expertise to proactively identify damage types, locations and magnitudes so you can ensure you’re performing the right inspections at the right times. Visit us at pinnacleart.com to learn more.

  • January/February 2014 Inspectioneering Journal
    By Neil Ferguson at Hydratight

    If necessity is the mother of invention, then the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME), the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) are the parents of guidelines, standards, and regulations that help keep industrial operations safe for humans and the environment.

  • September/October 2009 Inspectioneering Journal
    By Warren Brown at The Equity Engineering Group, Inc., Wayne McKenzie at Syncrude Canada, and Shane Ryan at Syncrude Canada

    Leakage of pressure vessel and piping bolted joints in refineries is an unnecessary hazard, with high associated cost, that can be easily rectified using currently available technology. There have been advances in gasket testing technology in recent years that have allowed great improvements to be made in the specification of gaskets for refinery applications. This minimizes the likelihood of joint leakage and results in reduce operating cost. In addition, there have also been advances in joint assembly procedures that have enabled significant reduction in joint assembly times, while resulting in a better final gasket stress distribution and therefore lower likelihood of leakage.

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