Failure of locally buckled pipelines
Mechanical damage in steel pipelines in the form of local buckles due to excessive bending deformation, may severely threaten their structural integrity. The present paper describes experimental and numerical research conducted to assess the structural condition of buckled pipes, subjected to both bending and internal pressure. Fatigue failure under repeated loading is mainly investigated, whereas pipe burst due to internal pressure is also examined. Three full-scale buckled pipe specimens are tested under pressure and bending loads to determine their structural capacity. In addition, using nonlinear finite element tools, an extensive parametric study is conducted, to determine the critical locations at the buckled area, at which maximum strain variation occurs, as well as to investigate the influence of several geometrical and mechanical parameters. Using the maximum strain range from the finite element computations, and a simple S-N approach, reasonable predictions are obtained for the number of cycles to failure observed in the tests. The results of the present study demonstrate that under repeated loading, fatigue failure occurs in the buckled area at the location of maximum strain range. It is also found that the burst pressure may not be affected by the presence of buckles. Copyright © 2006 by ASME.