The purpose of this paper is to show how to evaluate the sensitivity of a given material to hydrogen-induced cracking through the use of a conventional electrochemical permeation technique. Prior to the cracking test itself, the permeation cell is used to compute the diffusion, solubility, and trapping characteristics of the material under study; then, hydrogen cracks are created in the disk-shaped specimen and the critical value at which damage appears is found from computed concentration profiles. Because of the numerous underlying theoretical assumptions for the calculation of critical concentrations, the obtained results are finally compared to data gathered from more conventional techniques (chemical analysis, mechanical testing). Critical concentration data for various materials and the use of this data to assess hydrogen embrittlement sensitivity are also discussed.
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