Recent discoveries of stress corrosion cracking (SCC) at nickel-based metals in pressurized water reactors (PWRs) and boiling water reactors (BWRs) have raised concerns about safety and integrity of plant components. It has been recognized that welding residual stress is an important factor causing the issue of SCC in a weldment. In this study, both numerical simulation technology and experimental method were employed to investigate the characteristics of welding residual stress distribution in several typical welded joints, which are used in nuclear power plants. These joints include a thick plate butt-welded Alloy 600 joint, a dissimilar metal J-groove set-in joint and a dissimilar metal girth-butt joint. First of all, numerical simulation technology was used to predict welding residual stresses in these three joints, and the influence of heat source model on welding residual stress was examined. Meanwhile, the influence of other thermal processes such as cladding, buttering and heat treatment on the final residual stresses in the dissimilar metal girth-butt joint was also clarified. Secondly, we also measured the residual stresses in three corresponding mock-ups. Finally, the comparisons of the simulation results and the measured data have shed light on how to effectively simulate welding residual stress in these typical joints.

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