Towards the prediction of intergranular fatigue crack initiation in metals due to hydrogen
A Arora and H Singh and DK Mahajan, MATERIALS SCIENCE AND ENGINEERING A-STRUCTURAL MATERIALS PROPERTIES MICROSTRUCTURE AND PROCESSING, 787, 139488 (2020).
Hydrogen deteriorates the fatigue behaviour of metals by attacking their microstructure in different ways. For better clarity about hydrogen- based degradation of metals, it is vital to identify the microstructural configurations that promote fatigue crack initiation (FCI) in the presence of hydrogen. Intergranular regions in polycrystalline metals are more prone to hydrogen attack due to the prevailing atomic structure, elastic anisotropy, and plastic inhomogeneities causing increased hydrogen accumulation in this region. In this work, FCI is studied in a model material nickel in the uncharged and hydrogen charged state during in-situ strain controlled low cycle fatigue (LCF) testing under a scanning electron microscope (SEM). Crack initiation sites are characterized by investigating the elastic modulus in the loading direction as well as the maximum Schmid factor of the crack neighbouring grains extracted through the electron backscattered diffraction (EBSD) data. The crack frequency for the uncharged and hydrogen charged specimens is then analyzed using the difference in the elastic modulus (Delta E), the difference in the maximum Schmid factor (Delta m), and Delta E/Delta m ratio between the crack neighbouring grains. The comparison shows that for the hydrogen charged specimens, intergranular FCI sites show high values of Delta E/Delta m compared to the uncharged specimens. These findings provide a predictive model for hydrogen linked FCI in metals. In addition, the synergistic role of the Hydrogen Enhanced Local Plasticity (HELP) mediated Hydrogen Enhanced Decohesion (HEDE) mechanism responsible for FCI is also demonstrated.
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