SYMPOSIA PAPER Published: 01 January 1998

The Effects of the Configuration of a Weld-reconstituted Compact Tension Specimen on Fracture Toughness Determination


For integrity assessment of reactor vessels it is desirable to obtain elastic-plastic fracture mechanics properties of the vessel material and evaluate how such properties evolve during operation. The J-R curve provides a direct evaluation of these properties. As surveillance capsules normally do not contain specimens for that purpose, the possibility exists of using reconstituted compact tension specimens (CT). These specimens have inserts of the material concerned taken from the undeformed part of Charpy specimens, whether tested or not, and are reconstituted with electron-beam welding.

In order to evaluate the validity of the fracture toughness characterization with CT specimens reconstituted in this way, a comparison is made between the J-R curves obtained from CT specimens with and without insert. To analyze the influence of the specimen configuration on fracture toughness characterization, reconstituted CT specimens of different thicknesses and weld configurations are tested.

To help the analysis, plastic zone size estimations of reconstituted specimens are made to verify if the plastic zone interferes with the reconstitution weld. A clear qualitative relationship has been found between the interference of the plastic zone with the weld and the validity of the J-R curves obtained with reconstituted specimens.

Author Information

De Backer, F
E.T.S. Ingenieros de Caminos, Canales y Puertos, Universidad de Cantabria, Santander, Spain
Gutiérnez-Solana, F
E.T.S. Ingenieros de Caminos, Canales y Puertos, Universidad de Cantabria, Santander, Spain
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Developed by Committee: E10
Pages: 436–450
DOI: 10.1520/STP38004S
ISBN-EB: 978-0-8031-5565-7
ISBN-13: 978-0-8031-2476-9