The use of surveillance specimens was identified in a roadmap (Sims, 2010, ASME HTGR Code Development Roadmap, STP-NU-045, American Society of Mechanical Engineers, New York, NY) developed for the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission for non-light water reactors that are intended to have very long design lives on the order of 500,000 hours. Creep-rupture, long term strain accumulation, creep-fatigue damage, and their interaction with environmental effects require significant extrapolation from shorter term tests. Surveillance specimens provide a means for confirmation of these extrapolations in-situ. The effects of cyclic service on creep-fatigue damage would be particularly challenging based on conventional mechanical testing. Proposed herein is a passive cyclic testing methodology that lends itself well to in-situ surveillance applications. The concept is based on utilizing the difference in the thermal expansion coefficient of candidate materials to generate cyclic loading based on operational thermal transients. Prototypical specimen designs are proposed and their in-situ response to representative plant operation are evaluated.

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