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SPE 48330

Accounting for Flaws in the Burst Strength of OCTG

G. Stewart, Lloyd’s Register (formerly with Shell International E&P), and F.J. Klever, Shell International E&P

Copyright 1998, Society of Petroleum Engineers Inc.

To fully realise the benefits of reliability based design for
This paper was prepared for presentation at the SPE Applied Technology Workshop on Risk wells, accurate capacity prediction models for OCTG and
Based Design of Well Casing and Tubing held 7–8 May 1998 at The Woodlands, Texas,
U.S.A. realistic statistical data for the model parameters are required,
This paper was selected for presentation by an SPE Program Committee following review of
as opposed to the conservative heuristic models employed in
information contained in an abstract submitted by the author(s). Contents of the paper, as traditional design. In the present paper, our primary focus is
presented, have not been reviewed by the Society of Petroleum Engineers and are subject to
correction by the author(s). The material, as presented, does not necessarily reflect any on (a) the development of a predictive model for burst failure
position of the Society of Petroleum Engineers, its officers, or members. Papers presented at
SPE meetings are subject to publication review by Editorial Committees of the Society of
of OCTG pipes with naturally occurring crack-like flaws, and
Petroleum Engineers. Electronic reproduction, distribution, or storage of any part of this paper (b) the development of a method to establish the probability
for commercial purposes without the written consent of the Society of Petroleum Engineers is
prohibited. Permission to reproduce in print is restricted to an abstract of not more than 300 distribution of crack-like flaws1 based on estimated mill
words; illustrations may not be copied. The abstract must contain conspicuous
acknowledgment of where and by whom the paper was presented. Write Librarian, SPE, P.O.
rejection rates and inspection procedures.
Box 833836, Richardson, TX 75083-3836, U.S.A., fax 01-972-952-9435. In a companion paper by Klever and Stewart [5],
analytical models for predicting burst loads in nominally
ABSTRACT perfect pipes or those with smooth wall loss are reviewed and
The quantification of risk using reliability based shown to produce accurate capacity predictions for both the
procedures offers significant safety-related and cost benefits. burst strength of defect free OCTG and for pipe with wire line
In order to progress this methodology for design of wells, or drill string wear. We discuss these developments briefly
accurate capacity prediction models for OCTG and associated as the model for burst of flawed pipe builds upon these: it
statistical data for the model parameters are required. In this involves consideration of both limit loads, as well as ductile
paper, we focus (a) on the development of a predictive model fracture mechanics techniques in the fully plastic range, to
for burst failure of OCTG with naturally occurring crack-like identify the governing mechanism of failure.
flaws and (b) on constructing probability distributions of It is believed that the development of this new burst model
crack depth based on estimated mill rejection rates and and the procedure to generate flaw probability distributions
inspection quality. will significantly contribute to the progress in establishing risk
Limit load models and ductile fracture mechanics based design procedures for casing and tubing.
techniques are employed to identify the governing failure
mechanism and a simple unified model is proposed for burst 2. LIMIT LOAD MODELS FOR PIPES
capacity. This model is supported by finite element (F.E.) Where fracture mechanisms are not prevalent, the burst
J-integral analyses and burst tests on P110 and Q125 tubes capacity a pipe, with or without a flaw, can be established
with artificial axial part-through cracks. using continuum mechanics models. The maximum pressure
achieved is called the limit load. We begin with a review of
1. INTRODUCTION analytical models for limit load predictions of pipes with and
The use of reliability based methods for well design offers without wall loss.
many potential benefits. Among these are: improved Analytical model for burst of pipe without flaws
understanding of risk and consequently enhanced safety;
reduced costs in areas where risks are low; and extension of Klever [6] developed an analytical model for the burst
design envelops to allow the development of technically strength of pipes based on isotropic hardening finite strain
challenging fields. Design factors based on reliability plasticity with von Mises’ yield criterion. This model was
methods have been adopted in other discipline areas, notably modified to include Tresca’s yield criterion by Stewart et al.
in pipelines [1] and in structures [2], where the approaches are [7] who also showed that the average of the Tresca and von
being positively embraced in codes of practice. Recently Mises burst capacity, based on minimum wall thickness, was
there have been a number of publications proposing such
techniques for casing and tubing design (see for example, 1
The statistics of the other variables in the model, such as the
Maes et al. [3], and Lewis et al. [4]). geometric parameters and the tensile properties, can be sourced in
other publications.

an unbiased predictor of the mean strength of X-grade pipe, thickness, the model was verified against ring tests and shown
with a standard deviation of the error of 3%. to be mean value correct with a standard deviation of less than
Although any general stress-strain law can be employed 3% [7]. The two-zone model has recently been shown (see
for burst strength predictions, fitting a Lüdwik power law companion paper by Klever and Stewart [5] ) to be an
curve to the material uni-axial true-stress/logarithmic-strain accurate predictive tool for the burst capacity of worn casing.
curve leads to the simplest approach (Stewart et al. [7]). This For plane strain, the two-zone burst capacity of a pipe with
curve, which is intended to fit the material data in the large thin section t * and thick section t can be expressed as:
strain region of interest, takes the form
p 2*z = f wl p * , (5)
σ = Cε (1)
where p * is the burst pressure of a pipe with uniform reduced
where σ is the true Cauchy stress and ε is the logarithmic wall thickness t * , given by
strain. The constants n and C are given by
t* t*
 e
n p * = f 1 σ uts = p . (6)
n = ln(1 + ε ult ) ; C =   σ uts , (2) R t
 n
The wall loss enhancement factor f wl associated with the
with ε ult being the engineering strain corresponding to the two-zone model in Equation (5), is equal to or greater than
engineering ultimate stress, σ uts . unity and accounts for the increased capacity over the burst
Taking the average of the Tresca and von Mises burst pressure of a pipe with uniform thickness t * . It depends on
strength [7] results in the following analytical expression for
the strain hardening index, n, and the ratio of the arc-lengths
burst capacity of a pipe with uniform thickness t:
of the thin and thick zones. The case when the arc length of
t the thin zone tends to zero (as for an axially cracked pipe), is
p = f 1 σ uts (3)
R shown in Fig. 1 for P110/Q125 pipe. For deep cracks, f wl
where has a limiting value of 2n.
n +1 n +1
 1  1 
f1 =   +   , (4) Table 1 Burst test database on as-received pipe
 2  3
Test OD t-min UTS Strain P-burst P-burst
p is the internal pressure differential at burst, and R is the at UTS test model
mean radius.
no. [in] [in] [ksi] [%] [ksi] [ksi] ratio

Burst data for OCTG pipe without flaws 1 7.064 0.352 107 11.5 11.3 11.3 0.997
As part of a test programme to establish the burst capacity of 2 3.530 0.254 109 7.7 17.3 17.4 1.008
worn pipe and pipe with cracks, two burst tests were carried 3 7.805 0.575 144 6.5 25.2 23.7 0.942
out by TNO on as-delivered pipe of grades P110 and Q125 to
provide base-line information. Recently, Paslay et al. [8] 4 7.068 0.524 131 6.1 22.1 21.8 0.985
tested a number of OCTG pipes. Their data on pipes without 5 7.076 0.408 105 9.3 13.4 13.1 0.976
flaws, together with the TNO data is shown in Table 1. In the 6 7.076 0.407 133 7.0 17.2 16.8 0.975
last column of this table, the ratio of the model prediction to
10 9.724 0.388 104 10.2 8.9 8.7 0.983
the test burst pressure is provided. The model given by
Eq. (3) (using t = tmin) is unbiased and has a standard deviation 11 9.929 0.531 102 10.2 11.8 11.7 0.988
of 2.7%. It is concluded that the analytical model of Eq. (3) 12 3.502 0.567 106 11.5 42.7 41.2 0.965
is a good predictive tool for the burst capacity of OCTG pipe 14 2.649 0.154 121 6.5 16.4 15.5 0.944
without flaws.
20 7.070 0.473 130 6.8 19.4 19.3 0.993
Plastic limit model for pipe with local wall loss 21 7.805 0.577 144 6.5 24.9 23.8 0.957
In his paper on burst, Klever [6] also developed a ‘two-zone’ 22 7.089 0.585 144 6.5 25.9 26.8 1.037
membrane tension model to predict the burst capacity of pipes TNO1 13.47 0.524 142 5.0 11.7 12.0 1.026
with smooth flaws. He assumed that the wall loss is long in
TNO2 9.921 0.606 155 6.0 20.7 21.0 1.014
the axial direction and that the pipe can be represented by a
plane model represented by two arcs (zones), each having mean 1.00
different wall thickness. Uniform straining through the std. dev. 0.027
thickness was assumed in each zone. For the case where the
rc-length of the thinner zone is large compared to its

1.050 ε / ε o = α (σ / σ o ) 1/ n , (7)
capacity of pipe with thickness t*

Hutchinson derived the plastic J contribution as

Enhancement factor over burst

J p = ασ o ε o a (1 − a / t ) ( P / Po ) 1+1/ n (8)
1.030 n

Q125 where a is the crack size, P is the applied load, and Po is the
1.020 P110 load at which the remaining ligament yields based on a yield
stress of σ o . For the case of cracked pipes, P ≡ p is the
1.010 internal pressure (differential), and the pressure po , is taken
to be that predicted from von Mises yield criterion such that
2 t−a
po = σo. (9)
0.00 0.05 0.10 0.15 0.20 0.25 0.30 3 R
w all loss/original thickness
By comparing Equations (1) and (7), it is straightforward to
show that
Fig. 1 Factor f wl as a function of wall loss
eε o
(σ o / σ uts ) 1/ n . (10)
When the length of the thinner zone is of the order of the
wall thickness, such as would be the case with an axial part- This leads to the following expression for J p for the cracked
through crack, the assumption of uniform through-thickness
straining leads to a two-zone limit load that is somewhat less
than that predicted by finite element models that account 1+1/ n
 
properly for shear banding. Therefore in the absence of a  
1 p
fracture mechanism, where limit load behaviour governs, the J p = a (1 − a / t )π nσ uts   . (11)
two-zone model provides a lower bound estimate to the burst e  2 t −a 
 σ uts 
strength of an axially cracked pipe.  3 R 
We will make use of this relationship later for the assessment
of burst tests on cracked pipes to determine whether the burst
capacity is limit-load or fracture controlled.
Real pipes will always have small flaws, the size of which will
depend on the manufacturing process and the quality of
Comparison with F.E. results
inspection. For pipes with cracks, there are two competing
failure mechanisms. One is the plastic limit-load behaviour To assess the validity of using the Hutchinson infinitesimal
described above. The other is fracture, which we now solution for the plane strain crack for a pipe with an axial part-
consider. through external flaw, large strain J-integral F.E. calculations
The J-integral method (see Rice [9]) provides a single were undertaken for P110 and Q125 casing. These analyses
parameter for estimating the onset of ductile fracture in pipes were performed on behalf of Shell by MARC Research
containing flaws and we look to this approach to augment the Europe. The geometry and material properties of the casing
models developed above. The J-integral approach is not studied matched that of pipes tested by Mitsui-Babcock with
strictly valid when the remaining ligament strains in the artificial flaws, details of which are given in Table 2a below.
plastic range (loss of J-dominance); however in this case, the A von Mises yield criterion was employed in these analyses.
toughness can be considerably enhanced owing to loss of The results are shown in Figs. 2a and 2b.
constraint ahead of the crack tip, as discussed by Odow’d and It is clear that the Hutchinson formula performs very well
Shih [10, 11]. Consequently, the application of the J-integral for both material grades. The normalising pressure in these
assuming full constraint at the crack tip is conservative. figures is the von Mises two-zone limit load which is defined
The J-integral solution for a crack in plane strain t*
p 2*z _ vm = f vm f wl σ uts (12)
Hutchinson [12] has developed a small strain solution for the R
plastic component of J for a plane strain crack in an infinite
where t * is the remaining ligament thickness and
body. Ignoring the elastic contribution (which is small when
the ligament strains in the plastic range), and assuming a n n +1
 1  2 
power law fit to the material uni-axial stress/strain curve of f vm =    . (13)
the form  2  3 

p FE = f FE p 2*z (14)
where p FE is the limit load calculated by F.E. analysis and
700 f FE is the increase over the two-zone model that results from
FE three dimensional effects.
600 Analytical Further details on F.E. comparisons with the two-zone
model can be found in Klever and Stewart [5].
J [KPa.m]


Burst test results and limit load predictions
300 To assess the consequences of crack-like flaws on burst
capacity, two pipe samples (P110 and Q125) with sparc-
200 eroded artificial part-through axial defects were pressurised to
failure. These tests were performed by Mitsui-Babcock
100 Energy Ltd. on behalf of Shell from the same tubulars that
were tested by TNO and reported above. The lengths of the
0 test specimens were four times the diameter and the defects in
0.7 0.75 0.8 0.85 0.9 0.95 1 1.05 1.1 both pipes were approximately 0.25 mm in width and 150 mm
in length. The defect depths were 1.7 mm (12.6% of average
wall) and 2.25 mm (14.3% of average wall) for the P110 and
Q125 pipes, respectively. The tensile tests were performed
Fig. 2a F.E. J-Integral for P110 pipe with external
at a constant strain rate of 10-4/sec and the hoop strain in the
crack compared to Hutchinson plane strain
burst tests was also kept to this strain rate to ensure
consistency of results.
As well as tensile tests, fracture toughness J-R tests and
1000 Charpy impact tests were carried out. For each material, two
sets (3 samples per set) of J-R curves were generated using 3
900 point bend specimens. The first of these were the usual pre-
fatigued specimens to ASTM E813-89. The second set were
800 FE sparc-eroded cracks to investigate whether burst tests with
Analytical sparc-eroded notches were representative of casing with sharp
defects and, if not, to allow adjustment of the burst test results.
600 Full dimensional surveys of both pipes were carried out.
The geometry and tensile properties of the pipes are shown
J [KPa]

in Table 2a, while the test results are compared with limit load
400 predictions in Table 2b. In Table 2a, tmin is the thickness at
the location of the flaw before the flaw was inserted while t*
300 is the ligament thickness at the flaw location given by
t* = tmin - a.
200 In Table 2b, P*_2z is the limit capacity calculated from
100 Eq. (5). The F.E. correction factor corresponds to f FE in
Eq. (14). It is observed that the two-zone model underpredicts
0 the burst pressure recorded in the tests. When the prediction
0.7 0.75 0.8 0.85 0.9 0.95 1 1.05 1.1 is adjusted to account for the limit load predictions based on
P/P*_2z the F.E. analysis, the answers are within 4% of the recorded
test burst pressures. This is similar to the agreement found
Fig. 2b F.E. J-Integral for Q125 pipe with external between limit load models and tests on regular pipes.
crack compared to Hutchinson plane strain The burst pressures for these cracked pipe tests show only
solution a small reduction over those for the defect free pipes tested by
TNO given in Table 1 (for which the P110 pipe burst at
As mentioned previously, the two-zone model 80.6 MPa and the Q125 pipe at 142.9 Mpa). This confirms
underestimates the limit load, in this case by 6% for both that failure is by a plastic limit load phenomenon.
pipes, as may be seen from Figs. 2a and 2b. This can be
expressed as follows:

Table 2a Test pipe details 600

Test Mean uts n OD tav tmin a t* J_P-test

[MPa] [mm] [mm] [mm] [mm] [mm] J_0.97*P-test
P110 980 0.049 340 13.50 13.3 1.70 11.60 400 R_sparc
R_f atigue
Q125 1070 0.058 253 15.73 15.4 2.25 13.15

J {KPa.m]

Table 2b Burst capacity of test pipes and
limit loads from models 100

Test P test P*_2z P test F.E. P test

[MPa] [MPa] P*_2z correction P_f.e.
1.5 1.7 1.9 2.1 2.3 2.5 2.7
P110 78.0 75.3 1.036 1.06 0.98 a [m m ]
Q125 141.2 128.2 1.101 1.06 1.04
Fig. 4 Tearing assessment of P110 test

In these tearing analyses, a pressure is selected and the

It is concluded that limit load behaviour governs for both initial crack size is incremented. By calculating the J value
tests and that the capacity is not affected by fracture. This for each crack size, the applied J curve is obtained. If this
indicates that the material is extremely tough, which is curve intersects the resistance curve, the crack growth is
confirmed by the high Charpy values of around 100 Joules at stable; otherwise instability (fracture) occurs.
room temperature (see Fig. 3). Based on these analyses, fracture is not anticipated for the
P110 burst test with the sparc-eroded defect, and this is
120 consistent with the earlier finding that the limit load governs.
However, had the defect in the burst test been pre-fatigued, it
Charpy Energy (Joules)

is predicted that the burst pressure would have been 3% lower.
The picture for the Q125 test is somewhat different. In
60 this case, the fracture analysis (Fig. 5a) predicts that the pipe
40 with the sparc-eroded defect should burst at 93% of the
20 P110 Q125 maximum pressure recorded during the test. Indeed, to
sustain the test pressure, the resistance curve would need to be
scaled by about a factor of 3. There may be several reasons
-40 -30 -20 -10 0 10 20
why this increase in resistance can be justified. The most
Tem perature (C) credible is that for the edge cracked pipe, the constraint in the
Fig. 3 Charpy impact transition curve fracture process zone ahead of the crack is substantially less
than that in the small scale 3-point bend J-R specimen. This
In the next section, we investigate the crack driving force loss in constraint reduces the magnitude of the mean tri-axial
and compare this to the resistance measured from fracture test stress which leads to an increase in apparent fracture
specimens to determine whether the absence of fracture is toughness during stable tearing. This concept of two
indeed predicted and to assess the consequences of having parameter fracture criterion has received considerable
fatigue sharpened cracks as opposed to the sparc-eroded attention recently and is still evolving. Notable publications
notches used in the test pipes. in this area are those by Odow’d & Shih [10, 11], MacLennan
& Hancock [13] and Tvergaard & Hutchinson [14], to name
Fracture assessment of test pipes but a few. Increases in toughness (Jmat) by a factor of 4 have
Figure 4 shows the results from a ductile tearing assessment been reported in the literature [13].
for the P110 pipe where the applied J values have been As with the P110 material, the fracture resistance of the
calculated according to Eq. (11) and the (lowest of the pre-fatigued Q125 specimens is lower than the sparc-eroded
recorded) resistance curves for both sparc-eroded and pre- specimens (compare Figs. 5a & 5b).
fatigue cracked specimens are shown. It is observed that the
sparc-eroded specimen (R_sparc) has a significantly larger
resistance curve than the pre-fatigued crack specimen

1600 assumed that the crack is sharp (which is not always the case
J_P-test for manufacturing defects), and hence the resistance curves
1400 J_0.93*P-test
with the pre-fatgued crack are employed.
1200 R_sparc*3
The procedure followed was to take an initial crack size a,
and to increase the pressure until the applied J curve was
tangential to the resistance curve. This pressure is denoted
J [KPa.m]

800 the fracture instability pressure. For all initial crack sizes,
this gave a crack extension of 0.2 mm for the P110 pipe and
0.3 mm for the Q125 pipe. Using the two zone model of
400 Eq. (5), the limit load was then calculated for the remaining
ligament thickness including crack extension. The lower of
the limit-load and the fracture instability pressure is taken to
be the burst capacity. In those cases where the limit-load
2 2.2 2.4 2.6 2.8 3 3.2 governs, this procedure yields a conservative two-zone
a [m m ] capacity prediction since the crack extension at the limit
pressure may be less than that associated with the fracture
Fig. 5a Tearing assessment of Q125 pipe
instability pressure. Note that the finite-element correction
with sparc-eroded defect
factor f FE is not used here as in general this factor will not be
known. The procedure provides conservative estimates of
failure capacity for both limit behaviour and ductile fracture.
J_0.97*P-test The results of this assessment are plotted in (Fig. 6). The
R_f atigue horizontal axis is the initial crack depth to wall thickness ratio,
R-f atigue*3
while the ratio on the vertical axis is the applied pressure to
the burst pressure of a uniform pipe with thickness t * = t - a,
J [KPa.m]

where a is the initial crack size. It may be seen that for the
600 P110/Q125 pipe samples considered, the pressure p *
corresponding to the limit load of a pipe of remaining
ligament thickness t * provides a good estimate of the burst
200 capacity envelop calculated from the fracture and limit-load
models. Note that the ratio of the limit-load to p * is less
2 2.2 2.4 2.6 2.8 3 3.2 than that shown in Fig. 1 because in this case it includes crack
a [m m ] extension. It is interesting to note that the fracture instability
curves for the two materials fall more or less on top of each
Fig. 5b Tearing assessment of Q125 pipe other.
with pre-fatigued notch

A fracture assessment of the Q125 pipe with a fatigued 1.04

Q125-f rac
crack (Fig. 5b) would suggest a failure pressure of 91% of the P110-f rac
actual pressure achieved. Scaling the resistance curve by a P110-lim

factor 3 would increase this to 97% of the test pressure. 1.02


We conclude (a) that pre-fatigued cracks are more severe 1.01

than sparc-eroded notches, and (b) that the apparent fracture 1

toughness of edge cracked pipes may be considerably higher
than that measured in 3 point bend specimens owing to the
loss of constraint that develops as the ligament becomes 0.98 Limit load governs Fracture governs

plastic. 0.97

5. FAILURE DIAGRAM FOR P110/Q125 PIPES 0.000 0.050 0.100 0.150 0.200 0.250 0.300


The tests discussed above on P110/Q125 casing give an
indication of burst capacity for one defect size only. Fig. 6 Fracture and limit pressures
However, using the developed analysis approach, we can for P110 and Q125 pipes
investigate the limit-load/fracture capacity over a range of
initial crack depths. Conservatively, the toughness increase
associated with lack of constraint is omitted and moreover it

6. CAPACITY MODEL FOR PIPES WITH AND The inspection process

WITHOUT CRACKS The QA system and control procedures in the mill have a large
We summarise these findings by stating that the capacity of influence on the quality of the final product and the inspection
casing with crack-like flaws can be established from an facilities play an important role in demonstrating that the
equation of the form: overall quality is to an acceptable standard.
Most modern steel mills producing OCTG in Europe and
t − a  1 
n +1 n +1 
 1  Japan use automated ultrasonic testing for wall thickness
pbcrack = fc   +   σ uts (15a) measurement and to detect longitudinal and transverse defects
R  2   3 
  and laminations. 100% coverage is possible and is
recommended. This, however, does not guarantee that all
where the parameter f c has been introduced to account for
defects are detected.
the case where the fracture toughness is less than that required
for fracture stability at pressure p * , and t is the wall thickness Probability of detection (PoD) curve
at the location of the crack (excluding crack depth). For the
The UT measuring equipment is calibrated to a reference
P110/Q125 casing tests studied, f c is equal to unity. This is
notch sensitivity and below this threshold flaws are not
likely to be the case for all quenched and tempered casing,
detected. For flaws greater than the threshold size, the
which has high toughness, however additional tests are
probability of detection increases with flaw depth. In Europe,
recommended to justify this assertion and to correlate the J-R
an N5 (5% wall thickness) notch is typically used to set the
curves to Charpy impact values.
reference sensitivity for defects such as cracks and slivers.
For pipes without cracks, but with smooth wall loss (such Defects that emit echoes greater than the echo equivalent to an
as wear), the complementary burst equation to (15a) is N5 notch are deemed unacceptable. The probability of
 1  n +1  1  n +1  detection of a defect depends upon its orientation, shape and
t min
pbwl = f wl   +   σ uts (15b) size. It is estimated that if an N5 reference notch is used, the
R  2   3  PoD of a defect having a depth of 5% of the wall is about
 
25%, while that of a 15% defect is about 95%.
where t min is the wall thickness of the thinnest part and f wl We construct a PoD curve as follows. A non-dimensional
accounts for the increase in strength provided by the crack parameter η (depth to nominal wall thickness ratio) is
surrounding thicker wall. For regular pipes f wl is unity. introduced and the PoD for the minimum detectable crack size
For pipes with wear, the reader is referred to the paper by ηmin is designated Pd1. For a larger crack of size m*ηmin it is
Klever and Stewart [5]. Pd2. For equipment calibrated to a reference notch of 5% of
For use in reliability based assessments, the lower of the wall, ηmin = 0.05. Assuming the PoD curve has a shifted
equations (15a) and (15b) provides the failure capacity. In exponential distribution with parameters α and β and cut-off
such probabilistic models, we suggest that the crack be at ηmin, then
considered to be embedded within a wall thickness taken from
the average wall thickness distribution as opposed to the POD(η) = 1 − α e − β η η > ηmin
minimum wall thickness distribution: the possibility of having (16)
a troublesome crack at the exact position of the minimum wall =0 otherwise
that escapes undetected is considered to have a negligible
probability of occurrence. The values Pd1 and Pd2 are selected based on judgement or
from calibration studies. As discussed above, a reasonable
7. ESTIMATING THE DISTRIBUTION OF estimate for the PoD for ηmin = 0.05 is Pd1 = 0.25, while for a
CRACK-LIKE FLAWS crack size of 3*ηmin = 0.15 it is estimated to be Pd2 = 0.95.
To make use of the above burst model for OCTG pipes with The parameters α and β are determined as follows:
axial flaws in a reliability assessment, it is necessary to know 1
the inherent probability distribution of the depth of crack-like  1 − Pd 1  m−1
flaws in manufactured OCTG. α = (1 − Pd 1 )  (17a)
 1 − Pd 2 
We develop a method to determine this probability
distribution based on mill inspection procedures. It is
assumed that prior to inspection, the size (depth) of the largest 1  1 − Pd 1 
β= ln  . (17b)
crack-like flaw in a single pipe has an exponential distribution η min (m − 1)  1 − Pd 2 
with unknown parameter, λ. If the probability of detection of
cracks of a certain depth is known, and if the repair rate in the PoD curves for two quality levels of inspection are shown
mill can be estimated, then the distribution after inspection in Fig. 7 with Pd1 = 0.25 and Pd2 = 0.95 in both cases. Quality
can be established using Bayes’ Theorem. The methodology Level I is designated by m = 3 while Quality Level II is
is expanded upon below. designated by m = 4. Quality Level I provides a higher PoD
and is indicative of the currently available technology.

Table 3 Parameter in exponential distribution
0.9 Reject/repair frequency (ν) Inspection λ
0.8 quality
Probability of detection

0.7 1 in 20 pipes Level I (m=3) 47.0

Level II (m=4) 44.6
1 in 50 pipes Level I (m=3) 63.3
Level II (m=4) 60.0
Updated flaw probability distribution
0 0.1 0.2 0.3 0.4
After inspection, pipes found to have flaws are either repaired
or discarded. The updated flaw pdf can be established using
m=4 Bayes' Theorem and is given by
Fig. 7 Probability of detection curves ~ 1 − POD(η)
f flaw (η) = f flaw (η) . (20a)
Estimation of initial flaw probability distribution and the updated cdf is calculated from
We assume that the maximum flaw depth in a randomly η
selected joint of casing has an exponential distribution with ~ ~
(as yet) unknown parameter λ and that the flaws are
F flaw (η) = ∫ f flaw (η) dη . (20b)
sufficiently long in the axial direction such that the applied
driving force can be established from the models developed
above. The initial probability density function (pdf) and Summary of flaw probability distributions
cumulative distribution function (cdf) of the flaw depth are We can now develop inferred flaw distributions from a
respectively given by knowledge of inspection quality and reject/repair rates. The
results are shown in Figs. 8 and 9. The benefit of inspection
λe − λη
f flaw (η) = 0 ≤ η ≤ 1, (18a) in reducing the severity of flaws is clearly seen, particularly at
1 − e −λ low recurrence frequencies associated with large flaw sizes.
It is believed that repair/rejection frequencies of around 1
(1 − e − λη ) in 20 pipes is quite common in mills (although this includes
F flaw (η) = 0≤η ≤1 . (18b)
1 − e −λ all types of defects). Therefore Figure 8 represents our
present best (but probably conservative) estimate of the
If all pipes are inspected, and those with identified defects distribution of crack-like flaws in OCTG. The accuracy of
are either repaired or rejected, then the repair frequency, ν, is this curve could be improved upon by monitoring mill repair
the chance of finding a flaw in a randomly chosen pipe and is rates and confirming the PoD curves.
given by:
1 6

ν (λ ) = ∫ POD(η) f flaw (η, λ ) dη 5

η min
Probability of exceedance

(19) 4
λe − λη
∫ (1 − α e
−β η
= ) dη
η min
1 − e −λ 3

Equation (19) can be explicitly integrated, although it is
more convenient to perform numerical integration. If the 1
repair rate is known (or estimated) the parameter λ in the
initial flaw distribution can be established. Table 3 provides 0
0 0.03 0.05 0.08 0.1 0.13 0.15 0.17 0.2 0.22 0.25
values of λ for various repair rates and inspection qualities. Crack-size/wall-thickness
initial distrib.
updated distrib.

Fig. 8 Level I inspection and repair rate of 1/20

(y-axis is log10 scale)

6 po von Mises yield pressure

p burst pressure calculated using average of Tresca
and von Mises models
Probability of exceedance

4 p * burst pressure of pipe with thickness t * (av. Tresca

and von Mises models)
p 2*z burst pressure of pipe with two wall thickness
2 zones (av. Tresca and von Mises models)
1 p 2*z _ vm burst pressure of pipe with two wall thickness
zones calculated using von Mises model
0 0.03 0.05 0.08 0.1 0.13 0.15 0.17 0.2 0.22 0.25 pbcrack burst pressure of pipe with crack
POD probability of detection
initial distrib.
updated distrib. Pd1, Pd2 probability of detection values
R mean radius
Fig. 9 Level I inspection and repair rate of 1/50 t wall thickness
(y-axis is log10 scale)
t* ligament thickness
8. CONCLUSIONS α parameter in probability of detection curve;
An analytical equation for the burst capacity of OCTG pipes parameter in stress/strain fit
with crack-like flaws has been established and a procedure to β parameter in probability of detection curve
estimate the probability distribution of the depth of axial flaws ε logarithmic strain
put forward. The methods described are general in nature
η crack depth to nominal wall thickness ratio
and their application to any grade of OCTG is quite
λ parameter in exponential distribution
σ Cauchy stress
It is likely that all quenched and tempered casing will have
sufficient toughness to allow the burst capacity to be σ uts engineering ultimate tensile strength
calculated from the limit load of a pipe of thickness equal to ν repair frequency
the remaining ligament; however additional tests are
recommended to justify this assertion and to correlate the J-R Acknowledgement
curves to minimum requirement for Charpy impact values. The authors would like to acknowledge the contributions
Improved flaw distributions could be obtained by made by Albert Holt and John Low of Mitsui-Babcock Energy
monitoring mill reject rates and by establishing accurate PoD Ltd, Technology Centre, Renfrew, Scotland, who carried out
curves. the burst tests on cracked casing with diligence and
The next step in this development is to derive safety professionalism.
factors for burst using probabilistic modelling techniques.
Nomenclature 1. Jiao, G., Sotberg, T., Bruschi, R., Verley, R., and Mork, K.,
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e base of the natural logarithm
Florence, Italy, 1996.
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~ 3. Maes, M.A., Gulati, K.C., Brand, P.R., Lewis, D.B., McKenna,
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