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Creep Life Assessmente Techniques

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For more papers of this publication click: www.ndt.net/search/docs.php3?MainSource=25

Cavitation Modeling.

Kumar Ankit

Department of Metallurgical Engineering, Institute of Technology,

Banaras Hindu University, Varanasi, India

Phone: 0120-2402008, E-Mail: kumar.ankit.met05@itbhu.ac.in

Abstract

The boiler and its components are built with assumed nominal design and reasonable life of operation about

two to three decades (one or two hundred thousand hours). These units are generally replaced or life is

extended at the end of this period. Under normal operating conditions after initial period of teething

troubles, the reliability of these units remain fairly constant up to about two decades of normal operation.

The failure rate then increases as a result of their time dependent material damage. Further running of these

units may become un-economical and dangerous in some cases. .

In the following paper presented, step by step methodology to quantify creep cavitation based on Statistical

probability Analysis and Continuum Damage Mechanics has been described. The concepts of creep cavity

nucleation have also been discussed with a special emphasis on the need for development of a model based

on creep cavity growth kinetics.

Keywords: Creep Cavitation, Cavity Nucleation, A-Parameter, Continuum Damage Variable D.

1. Introduction

The importance of creep cavitation and its role in failure of critical components has been

already studied in the past. However, there has been absence of a quantitative creep

cavitation model which can effectively correlate creep cavities with the remaining life of

the components. Efforts have been made in the past, but till now, the methods already

developed have been able to provide only qualitative guidelines. This has been primarily

because of two reasons. Firstly, due to lack of understanding especially, about the creep

cavity nucleation, which is the least understood phenomenon till date and secondly, due

to lack of a justifiable model that can correlate the surface cavities observed in the replica

taken from in-service components to the creep cavitation occurring in the bulk, which

obviously, is more representative of the creep life of the component. In the model that I

am about to discuss, the creep cavitation has been beautifully correlated to remaining life

using mathematical expression based on statistical probability distribution [1].

A remarkable achievement of the model is that it correlates the A-Parameter i.e., number

fraction of cavitated grain boundaries observed on the replica with the Continuum

Damage Variable D which is area fraction of cavities present on grain boundary facets.

The model makes use of Kachanov-Rabotnov Creep Damage theory and involves

minimum mathematical calculations. The methodology of calculation is quite economical

as the only experimental input required is the value of Acr (which is the critical value of

A-Parameter at failure that can be easily determined by performing a hot tensile testing)

as compared to creep testing and strain rate monitoring which requires expensive set up

of creep machine and a diligent software to incessantly monitor strain rate which is very

expensive at present.

2.1 Factors Affecting Creep Cavity Nucleation

Creep cavity nucleation has been one of the least understood phenomena till date. The

creep cavity nucleation rate affects the remaining life of a component. There are some

rate laws which are specific to components and the grades of steel such as the

relationship given below for the Type IV cracking in weldments:

where, B is the constant depending on the grade of steel, Q is the activation energy

specific to grade of steel, R is the universal gas constant and T is the operation

temperature in Kelvin. The extensive research work and literature survey has revealed

the following facts.

Presence of any non metallic inclusion or simpler words, any region that can act

as a stress concentrator acts as initiators of creep cavities.

Non-metallic inclusions in the HAZ.

triple points.

Creep cavity nucleating at grain boundary Growth of creep cavities perpendicular to the

triple point stress axis

The creep cavities generally grow and get linked up to each other in the

perpendicular direction to the stress axis.

The number of cavities per unit grain boundary area linearly increases with

creep exposed time.

As the amount of applied stress increases the rate of creep cavitation increases

exponentially.

High purity cast materials have the lowest nucleation rates and highest rupture

life.

Increase in austenising temperature leads to increase in nucleation rate and

decrease in rupture life.

Grain size and type of second phase particles such as carbides found on the prior

austenitic boundaries increases the susceptibility to cavitations especially M2C

carbides and SAEs i.e. surface active elements such as P and Sn.

1. Divide entire replica (standard preparation as per ECCC recommendations [2]) into

at least 400 parts by drawing reference lines parallel to the stress axis as shown in the

figure below. The replica can be viewed at a comfortable magnification so that creep

cavities are clearly visible. As the A-parameter is a ratio, the methodology rules out any

ambiguity due to choice of magnification provided the number of reference lines is

statistically high. The value 400 stated above is stated to ensure a minimum level of

accuracy in calculation.

2. Calculate NC = Number of Grain Boundary lines that are cavitated intersecting the

reference lines.

3. Calculate NT = Number of Grain Boundary lines that intersect the reference lines.

4. A-Parameter = NC / NT

1. Prepare the microstructure from a destructive sample to expose the grain boundary

facet. Isolate the grain boundary facet having maximum cavitations.

2. Draw a circle of area approximately equal to that of the facet. The circle is to be

drawn around the facet shown below.

Grain Boundary facet with m-cavities on it and circle Experiment to cut an idealized GB facet by

drawn around the facet [4] a line from all the possible direction

and position [4]

3. Draw lines through the cavities from all possible directions cutting the facet circle and

cavity in the facet plane as shown in the figure above.

7. P = SC / ST.

2.2.3 Measurement of Continuum Damage Variable D

f = A / P.

(2) Measurement of i.e. average local cavity area fraction on the facets.

= m (r / R)2

r = average radius of the cavities.

R = radius of the circle drawn around the facet.

D=f*

(1) Measure the value of A-Parameter at creep failure by performing a hot tensile testing

and interrupting the test just before the failure of the sample.\

and, = f / (dmin/dt * tf).

(1 D / Dcr) = (1 t / tf)1/L .

Conclusion

There are a number of techniques that are available, at present to predict the remaining

life of in-service components, both destructively as well as non-destructively. Out of

these, prediction of remaining creep life has been an area of interest as the phenomena of

creep is responsible for a majority of failures in power plants. The step by step

methodology described above seems to be quite flexible, and can be easily incorporated

into computer software such as MATLAB. To begin with, replicas can be taken from

inspection sites followed by image processing of these replicas using Fast Fourier

Transformations (FFT), i.e. filtering the image. In case, the replica taken is not very

clear, the concept of fuzzy logic can be incorporated, The output obtained from image

processing, such as A-parameter, inter-particle spacing, dislocation density etc can be

fed into the equation mentioned above and remaining creep life can be calculated

accordingly. The operating parameters such as the skin temperature of the component

and stress is known so life estimation can be done effectively and that too, non-

destructively which in itself is an added advantage. It does not involve any creep tests

which are time consuming and expensive processes. The life assessment can be done on-

site within a few minutes after the replica has been taken. Efforts are still on, to

incorporate this methodology into more sophisticated computer software for more

accurate life estimation.

References

Temperature Components, ASM International, Metals Park, Ohio.

2005.

3. C.W. Marschall, C.E. Jaske and B.S. Majumdar, Assessment of Seam-Welded Piping

in Fossil Power Plants Final Report EPRI TR-101835, Electric Power Research

Institute, Palo Alto, California, December, 1992.

Damage Variables of Continuum Damage - 1992; 1; 172 International Journal of Damage

Mechanics - S. Murakami, Y. Liu and Y. Sugita.

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