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Correlation between cleavage fracture toughness and charpy impact properties in the transition temperature range of reactor pressure vessel steels

Onizawa, Kunio; Suzuki, Masahide

In the structural integrity assessment of reactor pressure vessel, fracture toughness values are estimated by assuming that the radiation effect on fracture toughness is equivalent to that on Charpy properties. Therefore, it is necessary to establish the correlation between both properties especially on irradiation embrittlement. In this paper, we present the fracture toughness data obtained by applying the master curve approach that was adopted recently in the ASTM test method. Materials used in this study are five ASTM A533B class 1 steels and one weld metal. Neutron irradiation for Charpy-size specimens as well as standard Charpy-v specimens was carried out at the Japan Materials Testing Reactor. The shifts of the reference temperature on fracture toughness due to neutron irradiation are evaluated. Correlation between the fracture toughness reference temperature and Charpy transition temperature is established. Based on the correlation, the optimum test temperature for fracture toughness testing and the method to determine a lower bound fracture toughness curve are discussed.

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