Characterization of the fracture resistance of weld joints, and in particular dissimilar metal welds (DMW), is a huge and difficult work where no standard currently exists. As a consequence, characterizations of materials have to be done prior to the fracture tests in order to consider the mechanical aspects of the material mismatch via F.E. analysis in the fracture toughness determination. However, performing these characterization tests may imply using a lot of material, which is sometimes not available, and can be expensive. Most studies are usually realized on reduced sized mock-ups.

The considered experimental mock-ups are pipes composed of a ferritic pipe welded to an austenitic one. The weld joints are made of Ni base alloys. A few small tensile samples have been extracted so that each material, even the heat affected zone (HAZ), can be characterized at low temperature. A fast method using laser sensors and a specific specimen shape has been developed and is used to identify these materials strain-stress curves at −125°C. Afterwards, these data have been used to simulate multi-material compact specimen tensile tests and single edge notch tension specimen, representing a conventional defect in the HAZ. Also, these two kinds of specimen have been extracted and the tests performed in order to compare the experimental results to the F.E. analysis. This paper presents the experimental work, the related specific devices, the F.E. analyses and the experimental analysis.

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