The American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) Boiler and Pressure Vessel Committee has approved rules for the use of 6061-T6 and 6061-T651 aluminum for the construction of Class 1 welded nuclear pressure vessels for temperatures not exceeding 149°C (300°F). Nuclear Code Case N-519 will allow the use of this aluminum in the construction of low-temperature research reactors such as the Advanced Neutron Source. The rules for protection against nonductile fracture are discussed. The basis for a value of 25.3 MPa (23 ksi .) for the critical or reference stress intensity factor for use in the fracture analysis is presented. Requirements for consideration of the effects of neutron irradiation on the fracture toughness are discussed.
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