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Why Fatigue is Important?

Announcements of product delays

decreases average shareholder
value by approx. 12%
Cost of
Launch delays
Warranty claims
Legal liability


Design Time Scale

Ref: Simulia Introduction to FE-Safe webinar
1950s de Havilland DH 106
Comet Disasters

Europe lost the

lead in jet
airline industry
to USA for next
50 years

Three lost aircraft

with many lost
Jaguar Land Rover Virtual
Design Validation Process

Identified a low cost alternative

material with improved castability
leading to multi million GBP per
annum cost benefit

Provided a near optimal design

at early stage in design process

Confirmed that Jaguars target of

reducing the number of engine
tests from 5 to 1 was realistic and

Ref: High temperature fatigue of engine components Virtual design validation of exhaust manifold, fe-safe
UGM 2010, FESI 2009
Fatigue of Materials

Many materials when subjected to fluctuating stresses, fail

The stresses that cause failure are far below those needed to
cause fracture on single application of load

Fatigue failure is failure under dynamic loading

Fatigue is the cause for more than 90% of all in service failures
in structural materials

Fatigue failure generally occurs with little or no warning (with

catastrophic results)
Fatigue Fracture

Fatigue crack initiation, generally at the surface

Fatigue crack propagation region showing beach markings
Fast fracture region where the crack length exceeds a critical length
Parameters of Stress Cycles

Cyclic stress range


Cyclic stress amplitude

= ( )/2

Mean stress
= ( + )/2

Stress ratio
= /
Initial Straining

Material strained monotonically

to a given point A
Initially, the strain is elastic
After the yield strength, plastic
strain occurs
We assume that plasticity follows
a power-law relation to stress
Total strain by Ramberg-Osgood

n = Strain hardening exponent Single amplitude template curve

K = Strength coefficient relating plastic strain to stress
Constant Amplitude Cycling
for Stable Materials

Time-independent stress-strain
material behaviour
Initial straining follows the
ordinary monotonic stress-
strain curve
If we now reverse the
direction of straining, starting
at A, the path followed is AB
Not the same as OA
Reversing again at B to the
original strain amplitude,
material follow path BA
Constant Amplitude Cycling
for Stable Materials

Return path AB is identical to

BA for cyclically stable
This loop, designated the
hysteresis loop
Equation for paths AB and BA
is obtained by doubling both
the stress and the strain of the
monotonic stress strain path
Constant Amplitude Cycling
for Stable Materials
Can be written in a more
general form in terms of cyclic
range of stress range and total
strain range

represents the range of variable

If is equal to and = 21 ,
cyclic loop eq. is the same as the
initial stress-strain curve but with
both stress and strain values
Monotonic properties can be
used to approximate the cyclic
Cyclic Hardening / Softening Materials

Metals can soften or harden during fatigue depending on their initial

Conventional Material Model

Force P of 4000 lbf is applied in increments

Between increments, response is linear and only end points are


Analysis of Fatigue - Approaches

Stress Life Approach

Oldest and most common way to treat fatigue data
Useful when stresses and strains are mostly elastic
Unable to distinguish between initiation and propagation phases of
Strain Life Approach
Useful when there is significant amount of plastic strain
Fatigue life is typically quite short in these conditions
Fracture Mechanics Approach
Use cyclic stress intensity factor as crack driver
Fatigue Results: S-N Curves

Engineering fatigue data is

generally presented on S-N

Stress or Strain
is a stress level below which
material does not fail and can be
cycled indefinitely
Such endurance limit does not
exist for non-ferrous metals
For non-ferrous metals, fatigue
strength is generally defined as
the stress that will cause fracture Number of cycles to failure (N)
at the end of a specified number Fatigue / Endurance Limit
of cycles (usually 107) S applied stress
N number of cycles to failure
Categories of Fatigue
Stress or Strain Life?
Stress or Strain Life?

Most data is presented on S-N curves

Typical of stress life method which is most suitable for high-cycle

fatigue regime

Stress life method is the least accurate approach especially for low
cycle applications

Easiest to implement for wide range of design applications and

represents high cycle applications adequately

Strain life method is more applicable where there is measureable

plastic deformation i.e. low cycle fatigue regime

Necessary to compound several idealisations and thus uncertainties

exist in results
Strain Life Method

Stress / strain reversals for a

plastically loaded material

Total strain is combination of

elastic and plastic strain

= +

O-A-B reflects initial loading in tension

Strain Life Method

Elastic Strain is determined from a combination of number of cycles

to failure, , and Hooks law
2 is known as number of reversals

Known as Basquin relationship = 2

Since deformation is elastic, we can write

= = Thus = = 2
2 2 2

elastic strain amplitude Fatigue strength coefficient

True stress amplitude Fatigue strength exponent
Strain Life Method

Gives empirical relationship of

the -N curve

On a log-log plot it gives a

straight line of slope b

Basquin equation describes

fatigue in high cycle fatigue
Strain Life Method

Plastic Strain is described by the Manson-Coffin equation

= = 2


plastic strain amplitude Ductility coefficient
True stress amplitude Ductility exponent
Strain Life Method

On a log-log plot it gives a

straight line of slope c

Manson-Coffin equation
describes fatigue in low cycle
fatigue regime
Strain Life Method

= +

= + = 2 + 2
2 2 2

Fatigue strength can be

determined by superposition
of the elastic and plastic
strain components
Tend to plastic curve at
large total strain
Tend to elastic curve at small
total strain
Cyclic Strain Controlled Fatigue

Strain amplitude is held constant during cycling

Often occurs during thermal cycling when a component expands

and contracts due to fluctuations in temperature

Dangerous when a component is made from materials exhibiting

different coefficients of thermal expansion

Local plastic strains at notches subjected to cyclic loading can also

result in strain-controlled conditions near the root of the notch

This is due to constraint placed on the material near the root by the
surrounding mass of the material
Trends for Engineering Metals

Constant strain
amplitude cycling

High strength materials are desirable for High Cycle Fatigue. Have
low value of and low ductility
High ductility materials are desirable for Low Cycle Fatigue. Have low
values of and low strength
Effect of Mean Stress
& Stress Ratio

Variation of and R

Will cause the

endurance limit to

Mean stress
= ( + )/2

Stress ratio
= /
Effect of Mean Stress and Stress Ratio

As increases, the fatigue life decreases

As R increases, the fatigue life increases
Effect of Mean Stress

Ref: Mean stress effect on component life, Dana Corp, Fe-Safe User Group Meeting, 2005
Effect of Mean Stress and Stress Ratio

There are several empirical relations to relate the alternating stress to

the mean stress

= 1
= 1

= 1

Most experimental data lies between the Goodman and Gerber values. The
Goodman relationship is more conservative and is safer for design purposes
Goodman Relation
Other Factors Affecting Fatigue Life

Crack initiation site may depend on the loading sequence

Manufacturing method may affect the fatigue life

Crack initiation site may depend
on the loading sequence

Ref: Effect of overload on fatigue life, Hundai Kai Motors R&D Centre, Fe-Safe user group meeting 2011
Simulating Forming Processes in
an Oil Pan

Effects of stamping on a sheet metal part may reduce the life by a

factor of 30 i.e. from 15 years to 6 months

Ref: Fatigue assessment of an oil pan incorporating manufacturing effects, The J. Engg. Integrity Society, 2002