Mills, W.J.; James, L.A.
The effect of fast-neutron irradiation on the fatigue-crack propagation and fracture toughness behaviour of Alloy A-286 was characterized using fracture mechanics techniques. The fracture toughness was found to decrease continuously with increasing irradiation damage at both 24 deg. C and 427 deg. C. In the unirradiated and low fluence conditions, specimens displayed appreciable plasticity prior to fracture, and equivalent Ksub(Ic) values were determined from Jsub(Ic) fracture toughness results. At high irradiation exposure levels, specimens exhibited a brittle Ksub(Ic) fracture mode. The 427 deg. C fracture toughness fell from 129 MPa√m in the unirradiated condition to 35 MPa√m at an exposure of 16.2 dpa (total fluence of 5.2x10 22 n/cm 2 ). Room temperature fracture toughness values were consistently 40 to 60 percent higher than the 427 deg. C values. Electron fractography revealed that the reduction in fracture resistance was attributed to a fracture mechanism transition from ductile microvoid coalescence to channel fracture. Fatigue-crack propagation tests were conducted at 427 deg. C on specimens irradiated at 2.4 dpa and 16.2 dpa. Crack growth rates at the lower exposure level were comparable to those in unirradiated material, while those at the higher exposure were slightly higher than in unirradiated material. (author)
Chickering, R.W.; Bajaj, R.; Lally, J.S.
The irradiation behaviors of alloy A-286 as well as experimental gamma prime hardened alloys are being studied in the National Alloy Development Program for application of gamma prime hardened alloys in the liquid metal fast breeder reactor. The principal direction of the studies concerns the high temperature strength and swelling resistance of the alloys. Minor element compositions may affect the phase stability and void swelling. A high Ti to Al ratio indicates a tendency for the gamma prime Ni 3 (Ti,Al) to transform into eta phase (Ni 3 Ti) after long term thermal aging and irradiation enhances the tendency for transformation. Another minor element, Si, as a constituent of G-phase, and irradiation may enhance G-phase formation. The Ti, Al, and Si contents affect the swelling of Fe-Cr-Ni alloys. The swelling resistance generally increases with increasing amounts of these three elements in the matrix. In the study the effects of Ti to Al ratio, Ti content, Al content, and Si content on swelling and phase stability were analyzed after Ni-ion irradiation
Gray, H. R.
Five nickel-base alloys (Inconel 718, Udimet 700, Rene 41, Hastelloy X, and TD-NiCr), one cobalt-base alloy (L-605), and an iron-base alloy (A-286) were exposed in hydrogen at 0.1 MN/sq m (15 psi) at several temperatures in the range from 430 to 980 C for as long as 1000 hours. These alloys were embrittled to varying degrees by such exposures in hydrogen. Embrittlement was found to be: (1) sensitive to strain rate, (2) reversible, (3) caused by large concentrations of absorbed hydrogen, and (4) not associated with any detectable microstructural changes in the alloys. These observations are consistent with a mechanism of internal reversible hydrogen embrittlement.
Takakuwa, Osamu; Yamabe, Junichiro; Matsunaga, Hisao; Furuya, Yoshiyuki; Matsuoka, Saburo
Hydrogen-induced ductility loss and related fracture morphologies are comprehensively discussed in consideration of the hydrogen distribution in a specimen with external and internal hydrogen by using 300-series austenitic stainless steels (Types 304, 316, 316L), high-strength austenitic stainless steels (HP160, XM-19), precipitation-hardened iron-based super alloy (A286), low-alloy Cr-Mo steel (JIS-SCM435), and low-carbon steel (JIS-SM490B). External hydrogen is realized by a non-charged specimen tested in high-pressure gaseous hydrogen, and internal hydrogen is realized by a hydrogen-charged specimen tested in air or inert gas. Fracture morphologies obtained by slow-strain-rate tensile tests (SSRT) of the materials with external or internal hydrogen could be comprehensively categorized into five types: hydrogen-induced successive crack growth, ordinary void formation, small-sized void formation related to the void sheet, large-sized void formation, and facet formation. The mechanisms of hydrogen embrittlement are broadly classified into hydrogen-enhanced decohesion (HEDE) and hydrogen-enhanced localized plasticity (HELP). In the HEDE model, hydrogen weakens interatomic bonds, whereas in the HELP model, hydrogen enhances localized slip deformations. Although various fracture morphologies are produced by external or internal hydrogen, these morphologies can be explained by the HELP model rather than by the HEDE model.
Huang, F.H.; Wire, G.L.
Large changes in strength and ductility of metals after irradiation are known to occur. The fracture toughness of irradiated metals, which is related to the combined strength and ductility of a material, may be significantly reduced and the potential for unstable crack extension increased. Therefore, the resistance of cladding and duct materials to fracture after exposure to fast neutron environments is of concern. Existing Type 316 stainless steel irradiated ducts are relatively thin and since this material retains substantial ductility, even after irradiation, the fracture behavior of the duct material cannot be analyzed by linear elastic fracture mechanics techniques. Instead, the multispecimen R-curve method and J-integral analysis were used to develop an experimental approach to evaluate the fracture toughness of thin breeder reactor duct materials irradiated at elevated temperatures. Alloy A-286 was chosen for these experiments because the alloy exhibits elastic/plastic behavior and the fracture toughness data of thicker (12 mm) specimens were available for comparison. Technical problems associated with specimen buckling and remote handling were treated in this work. The results are discussed in terms of thickness criterion for plane strain
Hayner, G.O.; Clary, M.D.
Four reactor coolant pump (RCP) rotating assemblies (shafts) have failed or have severely cracked during operation at the Crystal River Unit 3 (CR-3) Nuclear Power Plant. The two failed shafts removed from RCP-1A have been extensively examined. All of the RCP shafts (except the D shaft) were fabricated from UNS S66286 superalloy (Alloy A-286). The D shaft was fabricated from UNS S20910 (Alloy XM-19/Nitronic 50). Torsional strain gauge analysis was performed on the RCP-1A shaft during the 1990 refueling outage. This type of analysis has not been performed previously on an operating RCP. Several results were found including: (1) the primary components of alternating torsional stress during normal RCP operation are impeller vane pass and a sub-2X torsional resonance with maximum components of ∼±0.8 ksi; (2) a typical vane pass cycle is initiated by an abrupt unloading of the shaft followed by a reload past equilibrium and a damped return to equilibrium; (3) a higher (compared to normal four pump operation) alternating torsional stress range resulted from solo operation of RCP-1A at low temperature and pressure (normal startup conditions); (4) the 2/0 combination produced the highest mean torsional stresses and the lowest alternating stresses and (5) a startup of a secured RCP with three operating pumps results in significantly higher alternating stress than a cold startup. The root cause RCP failure mechanism appears to involve RCP startup sequence at CR-3, peculiarities that necessitate this sequence and complex shaft stresses just above or under the journal bearing. The 1986 impeller bolt failure is not considered to be a root cause effect. It was also determined that fatigue cracking has always been responsible for both shaft initiation and propagation mechanisms and cracking can occur independent of shaft material
Hayner, G.O.; Lubnow, T.; Clary, M.
On January 18, 1989, the A reactor coolant pump rotating assembly at the Crystal River Unit 3 Nuclear Power Plant failed during operation. A rotating assembly from this pump had previously failed in 1986. The reactor coolant pump was fabricated by Byron Jackson Pump Division of Borg-Warner Ind. Products, Inc. from UNS S66286 superalloy (Alloy A286). A root cause failure analysis examination was performed on the pump shaft and other components. The failure analysis included shaft vibrational mode and stress analyses, pump clearance and alignment analyses, and detailed destructive examination of the shaft and hydrostatic bearing assemblies. Based on the detailed physical examination of the shaft it was concluded that cracks initiated in the pump shaft at two sites approximately 180 0 apart in a band of shallow, thermally induced fatigue cracks. The cracks initiated at the bottom edge of the motor end shrink fit pad under the shrink fit sleeve supporting the hydrostatic bearing journal. The band of thermally induced fatigue cracks was apparently caused by mixing of cold seal injection water and hot reactor coolant in gaps between the pump shaft and sleeve. The motor end shrink fit was apparently not effective in preventing introduction of the seal injection water to this area. Initial crack propagation occurred by fatigue due to lateral vibration; however, the majority of crack propagation occurred by abnormal torsional fatigue loading induced by contact and sticking between the rotating and stationary portions of the hydrostatic bearing. Final fracture of the shaft occurred by torsional overload. Metallurgical characteristics and mechanical properties of the shaft were within design specification and probably did not significantly influence the cracking process