Electron backscatter diffraction (EBSD) measurement of accumulated strain

Githinji, David; Northover, Shirley and Bouchard, P. John (2014). Electron backscatter diffraction (EBSD) measurement of accumulated strain. In: 3rd International ECCC- Creep & Fracture Conference: Creep & Fracture in High Temperature Components, 5-7 May 2014, Rome, Italy.


Reliable life prediction depends on a sound knowledge of the accumulated strain in components subject to creep. Electron backscatter diffraction (EBSD) is now well-established for estimating/measuring plastic strain and there have been a number of different EBSD metrics proposed for this. Microstructure has a strong effect on the calibration of most of these, limiting their use in critical areas such as around welds where microstructure is inhomogeneous. During the service life of materials such as 316 steel there is extensive precipitation but most published applications of EBSD are on precipitate-free materials. A systematic study has been made on the applicability of different EBSD metrics to both solution-annealed and service-aged 316H stainless steel subject to a range of plastic and creep strains between 0 and 35% to determine the conditions for maximum strain sensitivity of each. A simple new method of assessing cumulative strain, ‘deformed grain fraction’ (DGF) is presented and DGF has been compared with more conventional EBSD strain metrics. In 316H steel with a range of microstructures the effects of plastic and creep strains are additive for all metrics. DGF is relatively insensitive to changes in microstructure and its use is demonstrated in measuring total plastic strain in ex-service welded components.

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