Analysis of Magnetic Nondestructive Measurement Methods for Determination of the Degradation of Reactor Pressure Vessel Steel

Materials (Basel). 2021 Sep 13;14(18):5256. doi: 10.3390/ma14185256.


Nondestructive magnetic measurement methods can be successfully applied to determine the embrittlement of nuclear pressure vessel steel caused by neutron irradiation. It was found in previous works that reasonable correlation could be obtained between the nondestructively measured magnetic parameters and destructively determined ductile-to-brittle transition temperature. However, a large scatter of the measurement points was detected even in the cases of the non-irradiated reference samples. The reason for their scattering was attributed to the local inhomogeneity of material. This conclusion is verified in the present work by applying three different magnetic methods on two sets of Charpy samples made of two different reactor steel materials. It was found that by an optimal magnetic pre-selection of samples, a good, linear correlation can be found between magnetic parameters as well as the ductile-to-brittle transition temperature with low scattering of points. This result shows that neutron irradiation embrittlement depends very much on the local material properties.

Keywords: Barkhausen noise measurement; ductile to brittle transition temperature; magnetic adaptive testing; magnetic nondestructive evaluation; micromagnetic multiparameter microstructure and stress analysis 3MA; neutron irradiation embrittlement; reactor pressure vessel; steel degradation.