The current practise of focusing the periodic retesting of composite cylinders primarily on the hydraulic pressure test has to be evaluated as critical - with regard to the damage of the specimen as well as in terms of their significance. This is justified by micro damages caused to the specimen by the test itself and by a lack of informative values. Thus BAM Federal Institute of Materials Research and Testing (Germany) uses a new approach of validation of composite for the determination of re-test periods. It enables the description of the state of a population of composite cylinders based on destructive tests parallel to operation. An essential aspect of this approach is the prediction of residual safe service life. In cases where it cannot be estimated by means of hydraulic load cycle tests, as a replacement the creep or burst test remains. As a combination of these two test procedures BAM suggests the "slow burst test SBT". On this a variety of about 150 burst test results on three design types of cylinders with plastic liners are presented. For this purpose both, the parameters of the test protocol as well as the nature and intensity of the pre-damage artificially aged test samples are analysed statistically. This leads first to an evaluation of the different types of artificial ageing but also to the clear recommendation that conventional burst tests be substituted totally if indented for assessment of composite pressure receptacles.
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