One of the thrust areas in the integrity analysis of cracked nuclear piping system is concern with the reduction in moment, at the crack section due to combined effects of local and global residual compliance. However an important consideration in the design of piping system, which is generally not considered, is the re-distribution of load that occurs due to finite compliance of the piping system. The load at the crack section reduces while it increases generally at support/anchor locations, which may be high stressed locations. In case of stiff-piping system this re-distribution of load may be quite significant. Hence for the complete integrity of the piping system these un-cracked locations should also be re-assessed. A generalized procedure is suggested to take care of the reduction in load at the cracked section and corresponding increase in reactions at the support/anchor locations in a 3-D cracked piping system. Thus the stability of cracked section as well as other highly stressed locations can be simultaneously assessed. Here it is assumed that the remaining piping system behaves in a linear elastic manner and the plasticity remains confined to the cracked section only. Detailed finite element analyses are performed on circuitous (3-D) cracked piping system to validate the developed approach. Results presented in this article clearly show that due to reduction in moment the crack driving force, for the same external load, reduces significantly.

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