September 2011

Maintenance and Reliability

Prevent tank-bottom failure through reliability analysis

Apply service-life methods to optimize inspections and maintenance for storage units

Liu, L., Logistic Engineering University; Liu, T., Sichuan University

Most oil storage tank failures result from defects like corrosion pits and flaws on the bottom plates.1 Since oil storage tanks in the petroleum and petrochemical industries are usually made from welded steel plates, defects in the tanks should be detectable during the welding process or in storage service phases.2 But even with efforts at advance flaw detection, there is still much complexity and randomness associated with tank-bottom corrosion. This makes it necessary to use probability methods in the reliability analysis and life/mean time between failures (MTBF) calculation for tank bottoms with corrosion pits. Probability model. The structure of a steel tank bottom can be considere

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