Performance of MOV Stem Lubricants at Elevated Temperatures

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This paper documents the results of recent tests sponsored by the U. S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) and performed by the Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory (INEEL). These tests address the effectiveness of the lubricant used on the threaded portion of the valve stem, where the stem nut turns on the stem. Recent testing indicates that an elevated temperature environment can lead to significant increases in the friction coefficient at the stem/stem-nut interface. Most valve actuator qualification tests are performed at room temperature. Similarly, in-service tests are run at ambient plant temperatures, usually 70 to 100°F. Since design conditions ... continued below

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DeWall, Kevin George; Nitzel, Michael Everett & Watkins, John Clifford July 1, 2001.

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Description

This paper documents the results of recent tests sponsored by the U. S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) and performed by the Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory (INEEL). These tests address the effectiveness of the lubricant used on the threaded portion of the valve stem, where the stem nut turns on the stem. Recent testing indicates that an elevated temperature environment can lead to significant increases in the friction coefficient at the stem/stem-nut interface. Most valve actuator qualification tests are performed at room temperature. Similarly, in-service tests are run at ambient plant temperatures, usually 70 to 100°F. Since design conditions can lead to valve operating temperatures in the 200 to 300°F range, it is important to know whether a temperature-induced increase in friction at the stem/stem-nut interface will prevent the required operation of critical valves. Lubricant aging is another phenomenon that might have deleterious effects on the thrust output of a valve actuator. Laboratory experience and field experience both indicate that after long periods in elevated temperature environments, the lubricants may lose their lubrication qualities. The scope of the current test program includes testing of five different lubricants on four different valve stems. Pending completion of the testing, results of the tests conducted using two of the four stems are discussed. The test series included collection of baseline data at room temperature, single step temperature tests where the temperature of the test setup was elevated directly to 250°F, and step testing where the temperature was elevated in steps to 130, 190, and 250°F, then returned to 70°F. All greases tested showed evidence of physical change after elevated temperature tests. Except for one particular lubricant, all of the greases tested showed increased coefficients of friction at elevated temperatures. Numerous other preliminary conclusions are presented. Recommendations for future research in the area of aged valve stem lubricant performance at elevated temperatures are also presented.

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  • Pressure Vessels and Piping,Atlanta, GA,07/01/2001,07/01/2001

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  • Report No.: INEEL/CON-01-00118
  • Grant Number: DE-AC07-99ID-13727
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 910883
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc881966

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  • July 1, 2001

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  • Sept. 22, 2016, 2:13 a.m.

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  • Nov. 30, 2016, 4:20 p.m.

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DeWall, Kevin George; Nitzel, Michael Everett & Watkins, John Clifford. Performance of MOV Stem Lubricants at Elevated Temperatures, article, July 1, 2001; [Idaho Falls, Idaho]. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc881966/: accessed September 19, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.