Fracture Toughness in Relation toSteel Castings Design and ApplicationbyW. J. JacksonABSTRACT
The purpose of this paper is to demonstrate the value of fracturemechanics in steel casting design and material selection, and to point outthe significance of defects, especially with regard to brittle fracture andfatigue crack growth. While it has been necessary to include some backgroundtheory and mathematical concepts, these have been kept to a minimum; em-phasis is placed on the practical use of fracture toughness criteria forestablishing safety levels for particular service applications and on theimplications of the fracture mechanics approach for the steel founder.
Castings are individual products; they are inspected individually fordiscontinuities which must be repaired or the casting rejected. In manyengineering applications castings tend to be "over designed", i .e. the safetyfactors are unnecessarily generous where it can be shown that any defectspresent are not critical. Design rules, to avoid the possibility of fastfracture, are not the only constraints on total castings design, but they
are often the greatest constraint and the least quantitative. A successfulfracture mechanics approach to design would encourage production of castingsof better fitness for purpose, and generally lighter section, if this weredesirable for other than safety reasons.
FACTORS OFSAFETYAND BRITTLEFRACTURE
Traditionally, design calculations are based on the theory of elas-ticity, and therefore utilize standard formulae, which assume that thematerial is elastic, homogeneous and isotropic. For non-critical components,it is usually sufficient to base the design on average stresses, but withcritical components it may be necessary to take account of severe stressservice conditions, and obtain the local stress distributions by theoret-ical or experimental stress analysis techniques. The design stress isrelated to either the yield stress, or the U.T.S., by means of a factor ofsafety. This single factor which is usually a product of several contrib-utory factors, accounts for local stress fluctuations, variations of serviceloading conditions, scatter in material properties and environmental effects.The choice of the factor of safety depends on the experience and judgementof the designer unless it is implicitly stated in a relevant specificationor design code.For ductile materials and static loading conditions, the factor isrelated to the yield of 0.2% proof stress.may usually be ignored, because they are relieved by plastic deformation.The minimum safety factor for steel castings based on the U.T.S. is usuallytaken as 4, but design engineers, uncertain of the quality of the steeland unfamiliar with the reliability of steel castings, have in the pastused additional safety factors of 2 to 5 or more.safety factors are rendered largely unnecessary by the wide range of non-destructive tests which can be applied to steel castings and by the dataLocal stress concentrationsThese exaggerated-1-