ECA procedures of crack-like defects based upon the FAD philosophy have undergone extensive developments in the past decade to form the basis for industrial codes and guidelines for structural integrity assessments. However, the application (and validation) of these procedures in defect assessments of structural components made of ductile materials under low constraint conditions remains a potential open issue. A central objective of this work is to assess the capability of the failure assessment diagram methodology to predict the failure pressure of ductile pipes with planar defects having different geometries. Specifically, the present work compares the burst pressure predictions for austenitic steel pipes with axial flaws derived from two widely used FAD procedures: BS7910 and API579. Such an application serves as a prototype for a wide class of integrity assessment problems involving the effects of strain hardening properties and ductility while, at the same time, assessing the robustness of FAD procedures in failure predictions. The direct application of BS 7910 procedure indicate rather large margins between the predicted and the actual (measured) failure pressures. In contrast, the API 579 procedure appears to provide better agreement with experimental data. Overall, the results validate the use of FAD-based methodologies for defect assessments of ductile pipes with axial crack-like flaws.

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