Abstract

The use of small specimen test techniques (SSTT) to determine the mechanical properties of irradiated materials has been studied over the past decades both in fission and fusion programs, but also to characterise and optimise new materials by nuclear and non-nuclear communities. Currently a number of activities are running that focus on the standardisation of SSTT to determine fracture toughness properties for fusion reactor materials (IAEA [1], EUROfusion [2], F4E [3]), and to support the long-term operation of light-water reactors (CRIEPI [4]). The determination of the T0 reference temperature (ASTM E1921 [5]) has been successfully achieved by testing small compact tension (C(T)) specimens (W = 8mm, B = 4mm) of non-irradiated and irradiated pressure vessel materials. However, some concerns exist regarding the use of the Master Curve (MC) on ferritic-martensitic steels, not only with SSTT but also with standard specimens. The main concern is the slope of the MC [6, 7], that seems to be steeper than the standard one. In this paper, the fracture toughness of Eurofer97 has been obtained by testing small C(T) specimens with the geometry selected in IFMIF-DONES (W = 9.2mm, B = 4.6mm) in the transition region. T0 has been determined and compared to the one obtained from 0.5T-C(T) specimens (both normalised to 1T). The scatter of the results has also been assessed to validate the scatter description of the MC.

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