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Title: Report on FY15 Two-Bar Thermal Ratcheting Test Results

Alloy 617 is a reference structural material for very high temperature components of advanced-gas cooled reactors with outlet temperatures in the range of . In order for designers to be able to use Alloy 617 for these high temperature components, Alloy 617 has to be approved for use in Section III (the nuclear section) of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) Boiler and Pressure Vessel Code. A plan has been developed to submit a draft code for Alloy 617 to ASME Section III by 2015. However, the current rules in Subsection NH* for the evaluation of strain limits and creep-fatigue damage using simplified methods based on elastic analysis have been deemed inappropriate for Alloy 617 at temperatures above . The rationale for this exclusion is that at higher temperatures it is not feasible to decouple plasticity and creep deformation, which is the basis for the current simplified rules. This temperature, , is well below the temperature range of interest for this material in High Temperature Gas Cooled Reactor (HTGR) applications. The only current alternative is, thus, a full inelastic analysis which requires sophisticated material models which have been formulated but not yet verified. To address this issue, proposed codemore » rules have been developed which are based on the use of elastic-perfectly plastic (EPP) analysis methods and which are expected to be applicable to very high temperatures. These newly proposed rules also address a long-term objective to provide an option for more simple, comprehensive and easily applied rules than the current so called simplified rules These two-bar tests discussed herein are part of an ongoing series of tests with cyclic loading at high temperatures using specimens representing key features of potential component designs. The initial focus of the two-bar ratcheting test program, to verify the procedure for evaluation of strain limits for Alloy 617 at very high temperatures, has been expanded to respond to guidance from ASME Code committees that the proposed EPP methodology should also apply to other Subsection NH materials throughout their allowed temperature range. To support these objectives, two suites of tests have been accomplished during this reporting period. One suite addresses the issue of the response of Alloy 617 at a lower temperature with tests in range of 500 800oC and a few at 350 650°C. The other suite addresses the response of SS316H up to its current maximum allowed temperature of 1500°F (815°C) In the two-bar test methodology, the two bars can be viewed as specimens taken out of a tubular component across the wall thickness representing the inner wall element and the outer wall element respectively. The two bars are alternately heated and cooled under sustained axial loading to generate ratcheting. A sustained hold time is introduced at the hot extreme of the cycle to capture the accelerated ratcheting and strain accumulation due to creep. Since the boundary conditions are a combination of strain control and load control it is necessary to use two coupled servo-controlled testing machines to achieve the key features of the two-bar representation of actual component behavior. Two-bar thermal ratcheting test results with combinations of applied mean stresses, transient temperature difference and heating and cooling rates were recorded. Tests performed at heating and cooling rates of 30°C/min are comparable to a strain rate of 10 ⁻⁵/sec. At high mean stresses in tension the direction of ratcheting was in-phase with the load, e.g. tensile strain ratcheting under high tensile loading; however, at lower loads, strain ratcheting in compression was observed under net tensile mean stresses. The strain accumulation was proportional to the applied thermal load. However, there was a narrow range of applied load in which the high applied thermal loading did not result in significant strain accumulation. Unfortunately, when the proposed EPP strain limit evaluation rules were applied to the loading history for the two-bar configuration, the predicted narrow range of low strain accumulation did not coincide with the experimental data. However, by the use of inelastic analysis in conjunction with an analytic experiment it was possible to show that the EPP strain limit code case rules could be applied to high temperature structures where the stress and temperature is not uniform throughout which is the general case. Interestingly, the suite of tests on Alloy 617 at the lower temperature range of 500°C to 800oC showed good agreement with the proposed EPP strain limit rules with a much wider band of applied load that exhibited minimal ratcheting. The four tests conducted at the lower temperature range of 350°C to 650°C showed no ratcheting. The suite of tests on SS316H at a temperature range of 515°C to 815°C resembled the results from the tests on Alloy 617 at 650°C to 950°C. Both exhibited a narrow band of applied load wher...« less
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  1. Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
Report Number(s):
RC0416000; NERC015
DOE Contract Number:
Resource Type:
Technical Report
Research Org:
Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
Country of Publication:
United States