This paper considers the subject of primary stress as applied in pressure vessel design carried out in accordance with the ASME Boiler and Pressure Vessel Code (1992). The paper is the result of discussions held by members of the Task Group on Primary Stress. Specific subjects discussed include methods for calculating primary stresses, the ASME limits on primary stresses and their meaning, use of the Code stress classification table in pressure vessel design, and commentary on the use of state-of-the-art analysis techniques to design pressure vessels and satisfy Code primary stress limits. A modified definition for primary stress is given, and examples for evaluating primary stresses for different geometries is provided.

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