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Fracture Integrity and Hydrogen Embrittlement

Webinars 09 December 2020

TWI is pleased to announce that we are holding a free-to-attend webinar entitled ‘Fracture Integrity and Hydrogen Embrittlement’ on 9 December 2020.


Brief introduction

Integrity assessment is carried out to ensure safe and sustained operation of engineering structures and components. Advances in steel manufacturing and welding mean that most engineering structures can now be built cost-effectively with more than adequate toughness for their application. However, a number operating conditions can lead to a phenomenon called hydrogen embrittlement occurring in these structures, leading to crack propagation occurring at crack tip stress intensities far below the critical values as determined by in-air ‘conventional’ fracture toughness testing. The most common of these conditions are ‘sour service’ (H2S containing fluid streams) and cathodic protection. The increasing interest in high pressure gaseous hydrogen as a ‘green’ energy carrier adds an operating condition this to the list.

If operating conditions lead to hydrogen embrittlement, then this will compromise the performance of the components by reducing the design life or in a worst scenario, resulting in catastrophic failure. If fracture mechanics based Fitness-For-Service procedures are carried out to ensure safe operation and avoid catastrophic failure, then it is essential that such procedures adequately take into account the adverse effects of the environment on fracture (and fatigue, but that is outside the scope of this webinar) resistance. Fracture mechanics testing in hydrogen embrittlement promoting environments is an active research area as developing a universally acceptable method for testing is still quite challenging.

This webinar will address:

  • ECA of structures operating under conditions (potentially) leading to hydrogen embrittlement
  • Challenges and possible solutions related to fracture resistance testing of nominally tough materials (commonly known as R-curve testing) in hydrogen embrittlement promoting environments to generate valid ECA input data

The majority of the testing solutions in this area are based upon the outcome of TWI’s in-house research driven by experts who have been working on various applicable mechanical testing programmes, mainly covering sour testing or testing under cathodic protection.

Who should attend?

  • Structural Integrity Engineers
  • Asset Integrity Managers


Muhammad Ali - Manager – Fracture Integrity Management section, Materials and Structural Integrity Group

Muhammad Ali

Manager – Fracture Integrity Management section, Materials and Structural Integrity Group

Muhammad is a Chartered Engineer and joined TWI in 2007 after completing his PhD in fatigue of materials. He is currently the Section Manager of the Asset and Fracture Integrity Management Group. Muhammad has been working on projects involving Fitness-For-Purpose assessment of structures used in various industrial sectors i.e. oil and gas, process industry, power. Many of these projects involved materials testing and fracture mechanics based ECA to various standards. Muhammad is also experienced in fracture mechanics testing in sour environment and is currently involved in developing new techniques for testing in this area. He has also been working on projects involving technical disputes and has experience of working as an expert witness in arbitrations.

Menno Hoekstra - Technology Manager - Sour Testing

Menno Hoekstra

Technology Manager - Sour Testing

Menno joined TWI in 2007, and started working in the non-destructive testing group (NDT). In 2009, he transferred internally to the fracture (FRM) department within the structural integrity group (SITG). He mainly works on single client projects for our members, determining flaw tolerance of engineering structures using an engineering critical assessment (ECA), fracture mechanics based approach. He is also involved in managing materials testing required to provide the necessary input for the ECAs. This includes small scale and full scale testing, together with fracture related environmental testing (mainly focusing on 'wet sour' (H2S) and cathodic protection environmental testing).

For more information please email: