Analysis of notch effect in the apparent fracture toughness and the fracture micromechanisms of ferritic–pearlitic steels operating within their lower shelf
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The fracture resistance of materials is generally higher in notched conditions that in cracked conditions. In other words, when the notch radius increases there is also an increase in the apparent fracture toughness, which is that exhibited in notched conditions.
This paper presents an analysis of the notch effect on two ferritic–pearlitic steels operating within their corresponding lower shelf, and develops an experimental programme, composed of 28 CT characterisation specimens and 72 CT validation specimens, together with finite elements analysis with the aim of validating the apparent fracture toughness predictions provided by the Theory of Critical Distances. The results have shown how this theory provides reasonable predictions of the apparent fracture toughness of the material
The research is completed with the analysis of the evolution of fracture micromechanisms when the notch radius increases, revealing a direct relation between this evolution and the apparent fracture toughness observations.