Multi-scale modelling of creep cavity nucleation and growth in polycrystalline Type 316 stainless steel
A common creep damage mode in Type 316 stainless steel under high-temperature power plant conditions is intergranular cavitation. A review of the literature has confirmed that cavitation in Type 316 is controlled by nucleation, which is not fully understood. In order to provide further insights into the physics of this process, existing strain-based empirical and stress-based (classical nucleation theory) nucleation models are modified in this study by considering experimentally-observed features of cavity nucleation in Type 316. The models are employed locally within a newly-developed crystal plasticity finite element (CPFE)-interface element framework. Modelling results suggest that the strain-based model as a function of local inelastic strain rate does not explain the physical nature of the nucleation process as observed experimentally. By contrast, the modified classical nucleation theory is able to capture features of the observed macroscopic failure response and the distribution of cavities in the microstructure. A number of missing features are identified in the mechanistic model, which need to be incorporated in future unified cavity nucleation theories. These findings highlight key aspects of the nucleation process, which need to be examined experimentally.
Author affiliationSchool of Engineering, University of Leicester
- VoR (Version of Record)