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Failure and Material Evaluation

(502) 955-9847

David N. French Metallurgists

David N. French Metallurgists is a consulting firm providing failure analysis, condition

assessments, metallurgical consultation, and educational seminars relating to failure in
boilers. Our primary mission is to solve metallurgically related failures with the highest
standard of engineering methodology, innovative ideas, and ethical practice. David N.
French Metallurgists is at the leading edge of technology with state-of-the-art laboratory
services, equipment, publications, and education.

DNFM specializes in boiler tube failure analysis, weld failure analysis, and life and mate-
rial condition assessments. Our engineering staff is qualified and able to determine the
failure mechanism and perform a second-to-none evaluation of conformance to industry
specifications. Laboratory evaluation, engineering analysis, engineering support, solu-
tions to manufacturing problems, enhancing boiler quality and performance, and an im-
proved level of reliability are just some of the quality services David N. French Metallur-
gists deliver.

The staff at David N. French Metallurgists have sixty plus years of wide-ranging industrial
processing, welding, metallurgical engineering, quality assurance, and manufacturing/
root-cause failure-analysis experience. Carbon steels, stainless steels, nickel based, and
other alloys used in ASME boilers and pressure vessels are our specialty.

Our primary objective is to provide independent, unbiased, expert opinions regarding

materials, fitness for continued service, and failures. Utilizing the latest in analytical
equipment and techniques, David N. French Metallurgists can determine the root cause
of failure for any given sample.

David N. French
Dr. David N. French
Dr. David N. French is Founder of David N. French Metallurgists. Dr. French
received his ScD in Metallurgy from Massachusetts Institute of Technology in
1962. He brings 45 years of metallurgical engineering experience, including 10
years as a Quality Assurance Leader for a major boiler manufacturer (Riley Stoker
Corp.) and a pressure parts manufacturer (Leighton Industries Inc.). He’s man-
aged corporate quality assurance functions, materials selection for alloys not
governed by the ASME Boiler and Pressure Vessel Code, metallurgical control of
welding fabrication, heat treatment, and the metallurgical laboratory for failure
analysis of boiler components. His book Metallurgical Failures in Fossil Fired
Boilers has been a vital reference to the industry for years. In 1984, Dr. French
founded David N. French Metallurgists, providing failure analysis, material condi-
tion assessment, metallurgical consultation and seminars on metallurgical failures
in boilers. He is an expert in fuel ash corrosion, welding, high temperature oxida-
tion, creep and stress-rupture failure, and is knowledgeable in boiler operations,
boiler design, materials selection, casting and foundry techniques. Dr. French has
presented many papers and conducted numerous seminars, most recently those
offered by David N. French Metallurgists and United Dynamics Corporation.

Dr. Rama S. Koripelli

Dr. Koripelli is Technical Director for David N. French Metallurgists. He is a
metallurgist with over 5 years of industrial experience. He graduated from the
University of Nevada at Las Vegas, with a PhD in Materials and Mechanical
Engineering. His dissertation relates to the tensile deformation, corrosion and
crack growth characterization of Ni-base alloy for use in heat exchangers for
nuclear hydrogen generation. His specialties include failure analysis, fracture
mechanics, material selection, mechanical and corrosion testing. Dr. Koripelli has
an industrial experience in a manufacturing company of heavy plates and vessels,
and with a thermal power station. He has been involved in structural integrity
monitoring of pressure vessels, non-destructive testing and evaluation, and
material characterization. He has directed many metallurgical analyses to
determine the root cause of failures, utilizing microstructural examination,
electron microscopy, mechanical testing and other test methods. Dr. Koripelli
has published numerous papers in the international conferences and journals.

DNFM Educational Seminars

We offer educational seminars catering to the needs of those who function in all
capacities within the industry providing continuous education and training.
A Joint Approach for Boiler Tube Failure Prevention provides an “In-the-
Field” experience and laboratory analysis of tube failures; identification and
prevention of the occurrence. Some topics include cycling the boiler, operational
upsets and the resulting damage. Quench cracking from water lances/cannons
and strategies of approaching the problem, effects of fuel changes, burner
retrofits, i.e. fireside corrosion; causes, prevention methods and acceptable
repairs. The importance of a good water chemistry program, caustic corrosion/
gouging, copper deposition and hydrogen damage, along with pitting, scale and
water side contaminants; including causes, preventions, and acceptable repairs.
Common boiler materials, fabrication, installation defects, graphitization, low
temperature creep, and boiler lay-up procedures.
The DNFM Laboratory is equipped with a wide variety of metallurgical and photo-
graphic instruments used to conduct failure analysis investigations. Failure analysis
is conducted by an experienced staff of engineers trained in such disciplines as:

 Microstructural Characterization of Metals

 Chemical of Characterization of Metals and Deposits
 Fractography
 Corrosion Processes
 Welding Metallurgy
 Mechanical Testing
 Non-Destructive and Destructive Testing Procedures

Failure analysis investigations conducted in the laboratory typically consist of the

following actions:

 Determine the failure mechanism or main cause of damage for any given sample
and provide recommendations to correct and avoid recurrences
A series of micros
 Identify service-related environmental factors which contribute to material
used for metallurgical
degradation or failure
analysis of a sample

 Characterize materials and assess their compliance with specifications as well as

condition after service

 Resolve material-related issues pertaining to fabrication defects and impurities

All services offered through DNFM are processed to meet the needs of our clientele:
 Standard – Typically 2 Week Turn-Around Time
 RUSH – Typically 48 Hours Turn-Around Time

Client “Value-Added” Services

 As a value added service, DNFM will periodically make recommendations to
perform additional metallurgical testing procedures and material life assessment
studies based on component, operational, and material failure data

 Client reports are kept on file indefinitely

 All reports may be accessed at using a provided user

name and password for each client.

 All failure information may be submitted to DNFM via an easy-to-use online form
Testing Procedures and Capabilities
DNFM offers a wide variety of analysis and testing procedures to meet the require-
ments of our clientele.


 Basic Tube Analysis
 Failure Analysis  Rockwell Hardness Testing
 Life Assessment of carbon or  Tensile Strength
alloy Superheater/Reheater Tubing  Flaring and Flattening
 Mill Re-Certification  Charpy-Impact
 Letter of Opinion
 Non Boiler Tube Analysis Standard
 Component Replacement and
Rush Service
 Radiography Client reports are kept on file
 Magnetic Particle indefinitely and may be accessed
 Ultrasonics on our website using a provided
user name and password.
 Liquid Penetrant
 On Site Replications All failure information may be
submitted to DNFM online via
an easy–to-use form.
Laboratory evaluation, engineering
 Material Verification via OES analysis, engineering support,
 Scanning Electron Microscopy solutions to manufacturing
problems, enhancing boiler
 Dissimilar Metal Weld Analysis performance, and improvement
 Deposit Weight Density of reliability are just some of the
 Ion Chromatography quality services DNF delivers.
 OD Chemical Analysis via EDS
 ID Deposit Chemical Analysis via Additional services not listed
EDS and IC may be available upon request

Metallurgical Failures in Fossil Fired Boilers

Hailed instantly as the definitive field reference, the book provides a comprehensive
catalog of the types of metallurgical failures common to boilers. Actual case histories of
boiler shutdowns are referenced as the book documents the full range of causes of
boiler tube failure - providing a blueprint for cutting maintenance costs and upgrading
the efficiency and reliability of any power plant operation.

Reflecting the heightened focus throughout the industry on boiler tube failure analysis,
the expanded in it’s Second Edition it sheds light on the latest innovative insights and
solutions highlighting the field. It features information on fluid dynamics, heat transfer,
stress calculations, and essential requirements of boiler design. For added relevance,
this edition includes important information on making material-condition and end-of-life
assessments for plant equipment being used beyond its original design expectations.
Also included is up-to-date information on the higher temperature ranges now experi-
enced by boilers. An expanded listing of boiler equipment as well as new case studies
examining an even broader, current range of problems makes this book more useful
than ever.

The fundamentals of elementary metallurgy are clearly presented, enabling even non-
metallurgists to fully grasp the analyses of the examples given.

Each failure has a full description of external and internal appearances. Common loca-
tions, causes, and preventive maintenance actions are included; detailed photos of the
failure, technical information, and metallurgical insight are also included.

Key Features
■ Browse the most common known failures
■ Search specific failure content to assist in determining the root cause
■ Print failure reports with photographs
■ Copy and paste technical information into real time documents
■ Customization option allow the user to add new and unusual failures
■ Built in “Boiler Dictionary” for in-depth searches

User Interface Search Engine

DNFM Quarterly Newsletter
View From the Penthouse
Past Issue Topics

Boiler Lay Up

Creep Fatigue

Oil Ash Corrosion

Waterside Deposits

Reducing Condition Corrision

Creep & Remaining Life

Severe corrosion can occur underneath depos-

its in a roof tube, especially during lay up

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Corporate Office
David N. French Metallurgists
2681 Coral Ridge Rd. Brooks, KY 40109
502 955-9847
Fax: 502 957-5441