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Karlsruher Institut für Technologie (KIT)


Description of the legal entity


The KIT (Karlsruhe Institute of Technology) is an education and research organization with about 10.000 employees, 25.000 students, and a total annual budget of about 750 million Euro. It combines the missions of a university of the state of Baden-Württemberg with those of a large-scale research institution of the Helmholtz Association. Within these missions, KIT is operating along three strategic fields of action: research, teaching, and innovation. KIT’s research profile is characterized by a strong focus on, amongst others, energy technology. The scientific research work is carried out in several academic institutes. KIT participated in all relevant previous and running EU projects concerning materials for energy-related applications and is a member of the European Energy Research Alliance.

 The Institute for Applied Materials – Materials and Biomechanics (IAM-WBM) will contribute to the FRACTESUS project, with coordination of the Program Management NUSAFE. The research of the institute is focused on the characterization and modelling of the mechanical and fracture mechanical behaviour of materials and the development of design rules and guidelines for their reliable use in nuclear components.


Profile of staff members involved


  • Dr Ermile Gaganidze (male): born in 1966, received his Diploma in Physics from Ivane Javakhishvili Tbilisi State University in 1990, earned his PhD degree from the University of Bayreuth in 1998. He worked as a scientist at Institute of Physics of the Georgian Academy of Sciences (07/1990-08/1994), University of Bayreuth (08/1994- 09/1997), University of Leipzig (10/1997-11/1998). He joined the KIT in 1998. Currently he is a senior scientist at the Institute for Applied Materials - Materials and Biomechanics (IAM-WBM) leading a group investigating the neutron irradiation induced damage in the structural materials for fusion application. He has long experience in the investigation of effects of the neutron irradiation on the mechanical properties and microstructure of fusion structural materials;

    Present position: Deputy head of the department of Mechanics of Solids 2 of the Institute for Applied Materials - Materials and Biomechanics at KIT.

Relevant publications, and/or products, services


  • Gaganidze E., Aktaa J., “Use of the failure assessment diagram to deduce ductile fracture toughness of the RAFM steel EUROFER97” (2009), International Journal of Pressure Vessels and Piping 86: 345-350
  • Gaganidze E., Aktaa J., “Assessment of neutron irradiation effects on RAFM steels” (2013), Fusion Engineering and Design 88: 118-128
  • Gaganidze E., Rupp D., Aktaa J., “Fracture behaviour of polycrystalline tungsten” (2014), Journal of Nuclear Materials 446: 240-245
  • Tanigawa H., Gaganidze E., Hirose T., Ando M., Zinkle S.J., Lindau R., Diegele E., “Development of benchmark reduced activation ferritic/martensitic steels for fusion energy applications” (2017), Nucl. Fusion 57: 092004 (13pp)
  • Gaganidze E., Gillemot F., Szenthe I., Gorley M., Rieth M., Diegele E., “Development of EUROFER97 database and material property handbook” (2018), Fusion Engineering and Design 135: 9-14

Relevant previous projects or activities


  • H2020 Research and Innovation Action, Multiscale Modelling for Fusion and Fission Materials (M4F) (2017 - current), Domain 2 leader
    • Modelling of Post-yield post-necking behavior of irradiated ferritic-martensitic steels
  • EUROfusion MAT Project (2014 - current), Principle investigator of several tasks devoted to
    • Investigation of neutron irradiation induced defects in fusion structural steels (Irradiation programmes, SPICE, ARBOR)
    • Fracture-mechanical and fractographic characterization of tungsten alloys
    • Development of Material Databases and Material Property Handbooks on fusion relevant structural and armour materials
  • EFDA Project (2005-2013), Principle investigator of several task devoted to
    • Post irradiation mechanical and microstructural characterization of neutron irradiated fusion steels
    • Fracture-mechanical and fractographic characterization of tungsten alloys
    • Identification of database gaps for fusion structural steels and tungsten alloys; Definition of fission reactor irradiation programmes to fill the existing gaps in the impact, fracture toughness, tensile, low cycle fatigue and creep properties.
  • EFDA Goal Oriented training Programme, Radiation Effects in RAFM Steels: Experiments & Modelling (2013 - 2016), Project coordinator
    • Investigation of the helium effects in the Reduced Activation Ferritic/Martensitic (RAFM) steel EUROFER97.

Significant infrastructure and/or any major items of technical equipment


Various static and dynamic testing machines are available allowing the mechanical testing of the specimens in a wide temperature range from -200 °C to 1500 °C and in a load range from nN to MN. The selected facilities are highlighted below:

  • Servo-hydraulic testing machine from Schenk (type 63 kN; MTS Flex Test controller) equipped with an Instron environmental chamber (type EC92; temperature range: from -160°C to 350°C) and a CCD camera device in order to determine true stress true strain curves. Different three-point-bending fixtures and fixtures for Compact Tension fracture-mechanical specimens can be integrated into the system. Test types: Tensile Test (true stress vs true strain), quasi-static fracture-mechanical tests
  • Servo-hydraulic testing machine from Schenk Hydroplus-VHS-50 (50kN, MTS controller); Test speeds up to 20 m/s; Different three-point-bending fixtures as well as fixtures for Compact Tension specimens can be integrated into the system; Test type: fatigue pre-cracking at RT, quasi-static fracture mechanical testing at RT.
  • Rumul Cracktronic resonant testing machine from Russenberger Prüfmaschinen AG, Dynamic bending moment 70 Nm (+/- 35 Nm), Static bending moment 35 Nm, Operational temperature: RT; Test type: Fatigue pre-cracking


Various optical and electronic microscopes are available allowing investigation of defects down to sub nanometer size. A wide range of analytical capabilities are available in combination with electron microscopy:


  • Zeiss EVO MA10 SEM: 30 kV W-gun, EBSD and EDS detectors, Test types: SEM
  • Keyence VNH-1000; Test types: Optical microscopy

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