When a crack is detected in a piping line during in-service inspections, failure estimation method provided in ASME Boiler and Pressure Vessel Code Section XI (ASME Code Section XI) or JSME Rules on Fitness-for-Service for Nuclear Power Plants (JSME FFS Code) can be applied to evaluate the structural integrity of the cracked pipe. The failure estimation method in the current codes accounts for the bending moment and axial force due to pressure. The torsion moment is not considered. Recently, analytical investigation was carried out by the authors on the limit load of cracked pipes considering multi-axial loads including torsion. Two failure estimation methods for multi-axial loads including torsion moment with different ranges were proposed. In this study, to investigate the failure behavior of cracked pipes subjected to multi-axial loads including the torsion moment and to provide experimental support for the failure estimation methods, failure experiments were performed on 20 mm diameter stainless steel pipes with a circumferential surface crack or a through-wall crack under combined axial force, bending moment, and torsion moment. Based on the experimental results, the proposed failure estimation methods were confirmed to be applicable to cracked pipes subjected to multi-axial loads.

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