Energy Dispersive X-ray technique applied to fatigue fracture surfaces oxidation to provide information on growth rate
MATEC Web of Conferences
Gas turbine components are strongly affected by cyclic loading during operation, which makes fatigue development the most significant cause of failure or cracking within them. The nature and growth rate of that fatigue is dependent on the stress experienced at a particular area of a part, the temperature, the material properties and the applied loading frequency. Various techniques, such as striation and/or band counting can, in some cases, provide information on fatigue life. However, often
... h techniques are rendered useless by lack of formation or obliteration by damage and/or oxidation of such features. Once a crack has initiated and is exposed to the engine atmosphere, the level of oxidation and other contaminant elements observed on the crack surface will evolve with time, and, correspondingly, crack depth. Element distribution analysis by an Energy Dispersive x-ray Spectroscopy (EDS) technique applied along a fatigue fracture surface could help to understand the evolution of the crack with time. Using EDS, an experimental procedure was carried out to ascertain a perceived measured percentage of oxygen plus other additional chemical species at a large number of stations along the length of a fatigue crack. The analysis was performed from the initiation site to the end of the propagation area, and also within the final rupture zone which had less time exposed to air and gasses compared to the fatigue system. An exercise of comparison between that progression in oxidation across cracked in-service components versus perceived measured oxidation level analyses on trial fracture surfaces exposed in atmospheric oven conditions at high temperatures for a number of different durations was performed. The obtained results provided information on specific questions concerning the fatigue propagation life of the in-service components; thereby amplifying the use of the EDS technique in this aspect of the materials forensic field.