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Title: Monitoring of power station steels using electromagnetic sensors
Author: Karimian, Noushin
ISNI:       0000 0004 5363 9879
Awarding Body: University of Manchester
Current Institution: University of Manchester
Date of Award: 2014
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With the world’s aging power generation network, especially in Europe and the United States, life-extension of steel plant components is increasingly a critical issue, as components are exposed to high temperatures and pressures during their lifetime, potentially resulting in carbide coarsening, making them prone to creep cavitation, possibly leading to component failure. Therefore, in order to evaluate the likelihood of component failure, non-destructive testing and evaluation procedures must be developed to properly assess the level of degradation in power station steels and ensure that end-of-life conditions are not reached. Electromagnetic (EM) inspection techniques have the potential to assess the level of degradation in power station steels through in-situ measurements. This research work introduces and examines a novel approach in the development of an EM sensor system for long term use. Specifically, it focuses on employing the developed EM sensor system technology in the monitoring of microstructural variations in power generation steels (such as boiler tubes) for in-service monitoring and evaluation during maintenance periods. In this work, controlled measurement of the EM properties (differential permeability) of cylindrical samples, machined from power station pipes (P9) and tubes (T22) in different states of degradation were carried out using two different EM sensor systems. Analytical and numerical methods (Finite Elements) were employed to calculate the sensor response to the samples and EM properties inferred by fitting the models to the measured results. The results from a closed magnetic loop sensor system were also considered, where the magnetic hysteresis curves for the steel samples were measured, from which relative incremental permeability values were obtained. It was found that the incremental permeability values measured by this system were connected to the differential permeability values obtained from the induction spectroscopy. Strong correlations have been drawn between microstructural changes (quantified using Vickers hardness measurements) in heat treated samples and EM properties (incremental and differential permeability). Finally, correlations established using the lab-based closed magnetic loop system are transferred to real-world samples, such as grade 91 open pipe / tube specimens. The measurement results verify that the techniques employed for measuring the EM properties of rod samples produce similar results for the open tube samples, demonstrating the viability of application of EM methods for assessment and monitoring of open power station pipes and tubes in-situ.
Supervisor: Peyton, Anthony Sponsor: Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC)
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Electromagnetic (EM) ; Electromagnetic Sensors ; Power Station Steels ; EM properties ; Differential permeability ; Hysteresis Curve ; Finite Elements Methods (FEM) ; Analytical Models ; Incremental permeability