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Multiscale modelling and experimentation of hydrogen embrittlement in aerospace materials. / SATHISKUMAR JOTHI
Swansea University Author: SATHISKUMAR JOTHI
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Pulse plated nickel and nickel based superalloys have been used extensively in the Ariane 5 space launcher engines. Large structural Ariane 5 space launcher engine components such as combustion chambers with complex microstructures have usually been manufactured using electrodeposited nickel with ad...
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Pulse plated nickel and nickel based superalloys have been used extensively in the Ariane 5 space launcher engines. Large structural Ariane 5 space launcher engine components such as combustion chambers with complex microstructures have usually been manufactured using electrodeposited nickel with advanced pulse plating techniques with smaller parts made of nickel based superalloys joined or welded to the structure to fabricate Ariane 5 space launcher engines. One of the major challenges in manufacturing these space launcher components using newly developed materials is a fundamental understanding of how different materials and microstructures react with hydrogen during welding which can lead to hydrogen induced cracking. The main objective of this research has been to examine and interpret the effects of microstructure on hydrogen diffusion and hydrogen embrittlement in (i) nickel based superalloy 718, (ii) established and (iii) newly developed grades of pulse plated nickel used in the Ariane 5 space launcher engine combustion chamber. Also, the effect of microstructures on hydrogen induced hot and cold cracking and weldability of three different grades of pulse plated nickel were investigated. Multiscale modelling and experimental methods have been used throughout. The effect of microstructure on hydrogen embrittlement was explored using an original multiscale numerical model (exploiting synthetic and real microstructures) and a wide range of material characterization techniques including scanning electron microscopy, 2D and 3D electron back scattering diffraction, in-situ and ex-situ hydrogen charged slow strain rate tests, thermal spectroscopy analysis and the Varestraint weldability test. This research shows that combined multiscale modelling and experimentation is required for a fundamental understanding of microstructural effects in hydrogen embrittlement in these materials. Methods to control the susceptibility to hydrogen induced hot and cold cracking and to improve the resistance to hydrogen embrittlement in aerospace materials are also suggested. This knowledge can play an important role in the development of new hydrogen embrittlement resistant materials. A novel micro/macro-scale coupled finite element method incorporating multi-scale experimental data is presented with which it is possible to perform full scale component analyses in order to investigate hydrogen embrittlement at the design stage. Finally, some preliminary and very encouraging results of grain boundary engineering based techniques to develop alloys that are resistant to hydrogen induced failure are presented. Keywords: Hydrogen embrittlement; Aerospace materials; Ariane 5 combustion chamber; Pulse plated nickel; Nickel based super alloy 718; SSRT test; Weldability test; TDA; SEM/EBSD; Hydrogen induced hot and cold cracking; Multiscale modelling and experimental methods.
Materials science.;Aerospace engineering.
Faculty of Science and Engineering