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THERFAT Résumé de rapport

Project ID: FIKS-CT-2001-00158
Financé au titre de: FP5-EAECTP C
Pays: Germany

Evaluation and Road-Map

The THERFAT project has been initiated to provide improved thermal fatigue evaluation approaches for managing thermal fatigue risks in Tee-connections susceptible to high cyclic temperature fluctuations. It was intended to close a gap regarding one specific fatigue issue. Although the THERFAT-project scope covered only this small-scale fatigue issue, a conceptual approach was required to frame and to condense the activity results of several technical disciplines to provide useful conclusions for practical engineering application.

Furthermore, the THERFAT-consortium consists of 16 partners with different technical and scientific background and objectives. Thus, a common understanding had to be developed, which parameter were fatigue significant and important compared to those of less importance. To reach this goal, a conceptual approach was required for the THERFAT project processing focused on the "small scale" Tee-connection investigation. In NPP, the same configuration of different technical disciplines and persons with different technical background exists. Simple guide lines are helpful how to mitigate or even avoid fatigue significant loads before they occur e.g. by optimising the system operation procedure or by ISI-measures to stop a valve leakage. Plant operation people who are not very much familiar with fatigue analyses should get an idea which temperature differences may be stress and fatigue relevant.

The applied THERFAT-processing approach can be regarded as a small example for the application of a general integrity concept. Enlarged for general application it can be used for all kinds of integrity evaluations (e. g. "Leak before Break"-Assessments, or Ageing Management-activities). The "Road-Map" explains the different elements of this overall integrity concept and how they are linked together. The approach may help to improve a harmonized understanding for the people involved and can be regarded as a first step on the road to a future European fatigue evaluation methodology.

The objective is to demonstrate that an unnecessary accumulation of conservatisms in single integrity concept elements can be avoided and that a balanced interaction between the different elements can be achieved by increasing the importance level of one element compensating the reduced significance level of another element, if appropriate.

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