Type 316L (UNS S31603) austenitic stainless steel (SS) is widely utilized in topside facilities for oil and gas production due to its good weldability, high availability, capability of being clad, and relatively low cost compared to other corrosion resistant alloys (CRAs). For certain components, cold working of the material may be desired to enhance mechanical properties (e.g. strength, hardness), or in other cases, be imparted into the material through shaping or forming operations. Cold working of 316L SS, however, is not permitted per NACE MR0175 for sour service applications as it is generally known to increase the susceptibility of this material to stress corrosion cracking (SCC). As a result, any component in sour service being used in a cold-worked condition must be upgraded to a more expensive material design.

In the present work, a systematic laboratory study was done to more accurately assess the effects of cold work (CW) on the SCC behavior 316L SS. Four-point bend (FPB) corrosion tests were conducted on annealed and cold-rolled 316L SS under various combinations of hydrogen sulfide partial pressure (PH2S), temperature (T), and chloride concentrations ([Cl-]). Through this investigation, the knockdown in 316L SS sour service limits due to cold-work was evaluated.

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