When a steam turbine was put out of service, cracks were noticed on many of the blades in the low pressure section round the stabilization bolts and perpendicular to the blade axis. The blades were made from chrome alloy steel X20-Cr13 (Material No. 1.402). When the bolts were brazed into the blades inadmissible localized overheating of the steel must have occurred, which resulted in transformation stresses and hence reduced deformability. The cracks arose as a consequence of careless brazing. Whether the cracks should be considered as stress cracks over their entire extent or partially as fatigue cracks produced by vibration in the operation of the turbine as a result of steplike growing of microcracks could not be deduced from the fracture surfaces. Microfractography showed that the cracks developed in stages.
Franc Vodopivec, Failure in Steam Turbine Blades, ASM Failure Analysis Case Histories: Power Generating Equipment, ASM International, 2019, https://doi.org/10.31399/asm.fach.power.c9001193
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