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Effects of Weld Strength Heterogeneity on Crack Driving Force in Stress and Strain Based Design Scenarios

[+] Author Affiliations
Stijn Hertelé, Matthias Verstraete, Koen Van Minnebruggen, Wim De Waele

Ghent University, Gent, Belgium

Noel O’Dowd

University of Limerick, Limerick, Ireland

Paper No. IPC2014-33454, pp. V004T11A011; 9 pages
  • 2014 10th International Pipeline Conference
  • Volume 4: Production Pipelines and Flowlines; Project Management; Facilities Integrity Management; Operations and Maintenance; Pipelining in Northern and Offshore Environments; Strain-Based Design; Standards and Regulations
  • Calgary, Alberta, Canada, September 29–October 3, 2014
  • Conference Sponsors: Pipeline Division
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-4613-1
  • Copyright © 2014 by ASME


Weld strength mismatch is a key factor with respect to the assessment of a flawed girth weld. However, it is challenging to assign a single strength mismatch value to girth welds, which are generally heterogeneous in terms of constitutive behavior. The authors have recently developed a method (‘homogenization’) to account for weld strength property variations in the estimation of crack driving force response and the corresponding tensile limit state. This paper separately validates the approach for stress based and strain based assessments. Whereas homogenization is reliably applicable for stress based assessments, the strain based crack driving force response is highly sensitive to effects of actual heterogeneous weld properties. The sensitivity increases with increased weld width and decreased strain hardening behavior. For strain based design, a more accurate methodology is desirable, and large scale testing and/or advanced numerical modeling remain essential.

Copyright © 2014 by ASME



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