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    Fracture Analysis of Ductile Crack Growth in Weld Material from a Full-Thickness Clad RPV Shell Segment

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    Recent studies indicate that the onset of stable ductile tearing leads to crack-tip fields ahead of the growing crack and crack-tip profiles that differ from those of a stationary crack. Stable ductile tearing exposes additional volumes of material to elevated stresses as the crack advances, which alters the sampling of potential cleavage initiation sites on the microstructural level. Also, measured cleavage fracture toughness values for these specimens will be influenced by changes in crack-tip constraint conditions that occur with prior stable crack growth. Fracture analysis techniques for inclusion of ductile crack growth in finite-element analyses were evaluated through applications to a full-thickness clad beam specimen containing a shallow crack in material for which metallurgical conditions are prototypic of those found in reactor pressure vessels (RPVs) at beginning of life. The beam specimen, which experienced a significant amount of precleavage stable ductile tearing, was fabricated from a section of an RPV wall (removed from a canceled nuclear plant) that includes weld, plate, and clad material. Effects of precleavage tearing on estimates of fracture toughness were investigated using continuum damage models.


    reactor pressure vessel, full-thickness clad beam, shallow-crack, compact tension specimen, precleavage tearing, continuum damage models

    Author Information:

    Keeney, JA
    Development Staff, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Oak Ridge, TN

    Williams, PT
    Development Staff, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Oak Ridge, TN

    Committee/Subcommittee: E08.06

    DOI: 10.1520/STP14987S