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Title: The combined effects of residual stress and warm prestressing on cleavage fracture in steels
Author: Rosahl, Karin
ISNI:       0000 0004 2735 9718
Awarding Body: University of Bristol
Current Institution: University of Bristol
Date of Award: 2012
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When the structural integrity of the reactor pressure vessel (RPV) in a pressurised water re- actor (PWR) is analysed, certain types of postulated accidents have to be considered. The conditions during a loss-of-coolant accident (LOCA) resemble a warm prestressing (WPS) sce- nario. Warm prestressing refers to a prior overload sequence which in certain circumstances improves the fracture resistance of a ferritic steel structure. Furthermore, a RPV is a welded structure. The welding process gives rise to residual stresses (RS) that can have a significant influence on the integrity of the RPV. Tensile residual stresses are often regarded as unwanted and detrimental. Previous work has not studied the combined effects of WPS and RS on the fracture behaviour of ferritic steel components. The purpose of this dissertation is to explore the combined effects of WPS and RS by means of robust statistical techniques. To describe the effects of WPS, two models are investigated. A local model using the near crack tip stresses and strains (often called the Beremin model) is usually used to predict the fracture probability of as-received material and can be adapted to include the effects of WPS. However, this requires the use of a detailed finite element analysis. The Chell model, on the other hand, is a deterministic model developed to explain the beneficial effects ofWPS on fracture toughness. Using a Monte Carlo (MC) simulation approach, the Chell model is extended to enable failure probability distributions to be determined. The failure probabilities are compared with both experimental data from the literature and results of an experimental test programme on compact tension specimens. It is found that the MCS approach used in conjunction with the Chell model provides robust and accurate predictions of the failure probability following WPS. To extend the analysis to include residual stress, a novel preloading rig model for introducing a known tensile RS into laboratory fracture specimens is investigated. It is found that the Chell model is to be preferred over the Beremin model. The Chell model provides robust and accurate predictions of the fracture behaviour after WPS, yet its application is straight forward and less time expensive than the Beremin model. The combined effects of WPS and a tensile RS field on the failure probabilities can be analysed by combining the Chell model with the preloading rig model and applying a Monte Carlo simulation approach. Contrary to expectations, it is shown that a tensile RS field can have a significant beneficial effect on the failure distribution after WPS.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available