Validation of experimental and computational fracture assessment methods for flawed pressure components

Rauno Rintamaa, Heli Talja, Arja Saarenheimo, Heikki Keinänen, Kim Wallin, Kari Ikonen

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

    2 Citations (Scopus)


    Safety and integrity assessments of pressure boundary components require reliable knowledge of the material property values and the validated experimental and computational analysis methods. To improve the accuracy and validity of the experimental and computational fracture assessment methods, a four year Nordic research programme under the auspices of the Nordic Liaison Committee of Atomic Energy was initiated in 1985 and is now under completion. The main technical objective of the programme was to clarify how catastrophic failure can be prevented in pressure vessels and pipings. Experiments with small fracture mechanics specimens and pressure vessels were performed to validate the computational fracture assessment analysis. Two tests were conducted on a decommissioned full-scale chemical reactor pressure vessel from an oil refinery plant, and were extensively instrumented, e.g. by utilizing a 64-channel acoustic emission monitoring system. The scattering of their material property values were determined by numerous fracture mechanics samples. In addition, as a part of the experimental work, the reactor pressure vessel was repaired by welding after the first test. The repair was carried out without postweld heat treatment and welding was done by applying the temper-bead technique. Residual stresses were measured during and after welding. Different fracture assessment methods were developed and subsequently applied to the tested components. Inter-laboratory round robin programmes with the participation of several laboratories were arranged to examine elastic-plastic finite element calculations and fracture mechanics testing.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)193-216
    JournalNuclear Engineering and Design
    Issue number1-2
    Publication statusPublished - 1990
    MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed
    EventSMiRT-10 Post Conference Seminar No. 2: Assuring structural integrity of pressure boundary components - Monterey, United States
    Duration: 21 Aug 198922 Aug 1989


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