ASME Section VIII

Last update: Jan 16, 2017

ASME Section VIII is the section of the ASME Boiler & Pressure Vessel Code (BPVC) that covers pressure vessels. It gives detailed requirements for the design, fabrication, testing, inspection, and certification of both fired and unfired pressure vessels. It specifically refers to those pressure vessels that operate at pressures, either internal or external, that exceed 15 psig. The latest edition was published on July 1, 2015.

Section VIII contains three divisions, each of which cover different vessel specifications. Division 1 largely contains appendixes, some mandatory and some non-mandatory, that detail supplementary design criteria, nondestructive examination techniques, and inspection acceptance standards for pressure vessels. It also contains rules that apply to the use of the single ASME certification mark with the U, UM, and UV designators.

Division 2 contains requirements for the materials, design, and nondestructive examination techniques for pressure vessels. Compared to Division 1, Division 2’s standards are far more rigorous, but allow for higher stress intensity values. The rules put forth in Division 2 can also apply to human occupancy pressure vessels, primarily in the diving industry. Like Division 1, Division 2 contains guidelines that apply to the use of the single ASME certification mark as it applies to the U2 and UV designators.

Division 3 provides rules that to pressure vessels that operate at pressures, either internal or external, exceeding 10,000 psi. Division 3 does not establish maximum pressure limits for either of the preceding Section VIII divisions, nor does it establish a minimum pressure limit for itself. Like the previous two divisions, it also provides rules that dictate the use of the single ASME certification mark with the U3 and UV3 designator.

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January/February 2015 Inspectioneering Journal
By Serge Bisson at GCM Consultants, and Hugo Julien, P.E. at GCM Consultants

Are you still hitting the welded joints of pressure vessels with a hammer during hydrostatic testing? If yes, then you’re due for a refresher on the pressure testing requirements of ASME Section VIII Division 1 since this requirement was for pressure vessels back in the mid 1940’s. This article will help you by highlighting the main requirements of, and differences between, the hydrostatic test for new pressure vessels fabricated according to ASME Section VIII, Division 1 and the hydrostatic leak test for new piping systems made under ASME B31.3.

May/June 2014 Inspectioneering Journal
By Hugo Julien, P.E. at GCM Consultants, Serge Bisson at GCM Consultants, and Guy St-Arneault, P.E. at GCM Consultants

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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Navigating ASME Section VIII (Div.1): Managing Your Pressure Vessels - Part 1
January/February 2014 Inspectioneering Journal
By Hugo Julien, P.E. at GCM Consultants, Serge Bisson at GCM Consultants, and Guy St-Arneault, P.E. at GCM Consultants

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?