The proof of the component integrity is fundamental for a safe and reliable operation of Nuclear Power Plants (NPP). The concept of the Material Testing Institute (MPA) for integrity assessment is based on fracture mechanic analysis which results in detailed regulations for nondestructive examination. This approach has to account for the main damage mechanisms as fatigue and corrosion. This paper focuses on the influence of corrosion-assisted crack growth which strongly depends on corrosion and environmental conditions (e.g. coolant purity). Up to stress intensity of approximately 60 MPa√m for ferritic low-alloy steels in high-purity water (acc. to specification) under constant load conditions the analysis can be based on a crack extension of max. 70 μm for each load cycle. Related to a test duration of 1000 hours this is equivalent to a formally calculated crack growth rate (CGR) of ≤2 · 10 −8 mm/s. For austenitic stainless steels more complex dependences on material, environmental and mechanical parameters exist. Particularly, for stabilized austenitic steels the crack growth rate data base is relatively weak. Under unfavourable environmental conditions in single cases crack growth rates up 6 mm/a have been measured. Based on experimental results an arithmetic mean value of 0.95 mm/a and a median value of 0.6 mm/a have been determined. A further improvement of data base is desirable.

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