Ezechukwu J. Anyanwu



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The pipelines used for the process of hydraulic fracturing (aka. “fracking”) process are constantly operating at very high pressure and thus are highly susceptible to Stress Corrosion Cracking (SCC). This is primarily due to the process of carrying out fracking at a shale gas site, where the hydraulic fracking fluid is pumped through these pipes at very high pressure in order to initiate fracture in the shale formation. While the fracking fluid is typically more than 99% water, other components are used to perform various functions during the fracking process. Research into the occurrence of SCC reveals that SCC is engendered by a number of factors, of which two main contributors are stress in the pipe steel and a particular type of corrosive environment that exist around the pipeline in the service setting. The variety of fracking fluid formulas which could be used and the insufficient information about the fracking fluid chemistry makes it very important to carry out analysis to ensure the integrity of the pipeline used for this process. The current research described here is focused on the evaluation of the susceptibility of low alloy steel (C4340) to stress corrosion cracking in different environments as it relates to hydraulic fracking fluid chemistry and operating conditions. These different environments are achieved by varying the solution pH, the pH adjusting agent and the applied stress. Electrochemistry measurements using AISI 4340 samples in various solutions and applied stress conditions will be presented and discussed.

Publication Date


Project Designation

Graduate Research

Primary Advisor

Douglas C. Hansen, Sean Brossia

Primary Advisor's Department

Chemical and Materials Engineering


Stander Symposium project


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Low Alloy Steel Susceptibility to Stress Corrosion Cracking in Hydraulic Fracking Environment