“Proposed New Fatigue Design Curves for Carbon and Low Alloy Steels in High Temperature Water” William J. O’Donnell, William John O’Donnell and Thomas P. O’Donnell, Proceedings of ASME PVP Conference, Technologies for Safe Efficient Energy Conversion, July 17-21, 2005, Denver, CO.

Keywords: high temperature water; carbon steel; low alloy steel; environmental effects; ASME Subgroup on Fatigue Strength

High temperature (> 300 F) water has been found to greatly accelerate fatigue crack growth rates in carbon and low alloy steels. Current ASME code fatigue design curves are based entirely on data obtained in air. While a factor of two on life was applied to the air data to account for environmental effects, the actual effects have been found to be an order of magnitude greater in the low cycle regime.

A great deal of work has been carried out on these environmental effects by talented investigators worldwide. The ASME Code Subgroup on Fatigue Strength has been working for 20 years on the development of new fatigue design methods and curves to account for high temperature water environmental effects. This paper presents an overview of the data and analysis used to formulate proposed new environmental fatigue design curves which maintain the same safety margins as existing Code fatigue design curves for air environments.

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