INCEFA-PLUS is a major new five year project supported by the European Commission HORIZON2020 program. The project commenced in mid 2015. 16 organizations from across Europe have combined forces to deliver new experimental data which will support the development of improved guidelines for assessment of environmental fatigue damage to ensure safe operation of nuclear power plants.
Prior to the start of INCEFA-PLUS, an in-kind study was undertaken by several European organizations with the aim of developing the current state of the art for this technical area. In addition to stress/strain amplitude, this study identified three additional experimental variables which required further study in order to support improved assessment methodology for environmental fatigue, namely the effects of mean stress/strain, hold time and surface finish. Within INCEFA-PLUS, the effects of these three variables on fatigue endurance of austenitic stainless steels in light water reactor environments are therefore being studied experimentally. The data obtained will be collected and standardized in an online environmental fatigue database. A dedicated CEN workshop will deliver a harmonized data format facilitating the exchange of data within the project but also beyond.
Based on the data generated and the resulting improvement in understanding, it is planned that INCEFA-PLUS will develop and disseminate methods for including the new data into assessment procedures for environmental fatigue degradation. This will take better account of the effects of mean stress/strain, hold time and surface finish.
This paper will describe the background to the project and will explain the expectations for it.