The expected service life of the Next Generation Nuclear Plant is 60 years. Structural analyses of the Intermediate Heat Exchanger (IHX) will require the development of unified viscoplastic constitutive models that address the material behavior of Alloy 617, a construction material of choice, over a wide range of strain rates. Many unified constitutive models employ a yield stress state variable which is used to account for cyclic hardening and softening of the material. For low stress values below the yield stress state variable these constitutive models predict that no inelastic deformation takes place which is contrary to experimental results. The ability to model creep deformation at low stresses for the IHX application is very important as the IHX operational stresses are restricted to very small values due to the low creep strengths at elevated temperatures and long design lifetime. This paper presents some preliminary work in modeling the unified viscoplastic constitutive behavior of Alloy 617 which accounts for the long term, low stress, creep behavior and the hysteretic behavior of the material at elevated temperatures. The preliminary model is presented in one-dimensional form for ease of understanding, but the intent of the present work is to produce a three-dimensional model suitable for inclusion in the user subroutines UMAT and USERPL of the ABAQUS and ANSYS nonlinear finite element codes. Further experiments and constitutive modeling efforts are planned to model the material behavior of Alloy 617 in more detail.

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