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Original Title: [Elsevier] on Some Basic Problems of Fatigue Research in Engineering

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www.elsevier.com/locate/ijfatigue

Xiulin Zheng

Department of Materials Science and Engineering, Northwestern Polytechnical University, Xi’an, Shaanxi 710072, People’s Republic of China

Received 1 March 2001; received in revised form 19 April 2001; accepted 26 April 2001

Abstract

Research on the basic fatigue formula, the criterion for omitting small loads, the rule for cumulative fatigue damage, and models

for predicting the fatigue crack initiation (FCI) life and probability distribution under variable-amplitude loading are comprehensively

studied and summarized in the present paper. First, the formula for FCI life is given as a function of the equivalent stress amplitude,

and the procedures for investigating overload effects are introduced. Using the above formula to analyze test results of the overload

effect on FCI life yields the formula for FCI life containing the overload effect factor, z, which can be adopted to characterize the

load interaction effect when Miner’s rule is used to compute the cumulative fatigue damage. Fatigue test results and analysis of

the underload effect show that the FCI threshold in the FCI life formula can be taken as the criterion for omitting small loads in

life prediction and in compilation of the load spectrum. Then, the fatigue damage function is defined, the cumulative fatigue damage

can be computed and the FCI life of structure members under variable-amplitude loading can be obtained by using Miner’s rule.

Procedures for predicting the probability distribution of FCI life or fatigue life are described and examples are introduced. Further-

more, factors affecting the value of z and the applicability of Miner’s rule are briefly discussed. Finally, further areas for fatigue

research are tentatively proposed. Most interest should be focused on research into generally applicable life prediction models and

the approach for fatigue reliability assessment of structure details made of the metals with continuous strain-hardening characteristics,

which have been widely adopted in aeronautical engineering, under service load and environments. 2001 Elsevier Science Ltd.

All rights reserved.

Keywords: Fatigue formula; Fatigue crack initiation; Overload effect; Criterion for omitting small load; Strain-hardening characteristics; Fatigue

damage function; Miner’s rule; Life prediction; Joints

geometry discontinuity in structural members, where the

From the viewpoint of engineering applications, the stress concentration occurs [1,3–5,9], and the test results

purpose of fatigue research consists of: (1) predicting the analyzed by one of the existing formulae, either empiri-

fatigue life of structures, (2) increasing fatigue life and cal or analytical [1,3,4,12–14]. The FCP life of structural

(3) simplifying fatigue tests, especially fatigue tests of members is analyzed by using the fracture mechanics

full-scale structures under a random load spectrum [1]. approach [3–5,8], and will not be discussed in the

The fatigue life of an engineering structure principally present paper.

depends upon that of its critical structure members. Aircraft structures usually operate under randomly

The fatigue life of an aircraft structure member can variable loading [15]. To date, formulating models for

be divided into two phases, the fatigue crack initiation predicting the fatigue life of elements under variable-

(FCI) life and the fatigue crack propagation (FCP) life, amplitude loading (VAL) is still the active field in

to be experimentally investigated and analyzed [1–10]. fatigue research [7,9,10,16–18]. It is well known that

Even for butt welds containing uncrack-like defects, the there are three governing factors in the life prediction of

FCI life occupies a great portion of the total fatigue life structural members under VAL: the fatigue life curve

and cannot be neglected [11]. FCI life has been meas- and the corresponding expression under constant-ampli-

tude loading (CAL), the load spectrum sustained by the

structure elements, and the rule for computing cumulat-

E-mail address: xiulinzheng@yahoo.com (X. Zheng). ive fatigue damage. Actually, the cumulative fatigue

0142-1123/01/$ - see front matter 2001 Elsevier Science Ltd. All rights reserved.

PII: S 0 1 4 2 - 1 1 2 3 ( 0 1 ) 0 0 0 4 0 - 8

752 X. Zheng / International Journal of Fatigue 23 (2001) 751–766

damage rule is used to convert the fatigue damage under work has contributed to research on the overload effects

VAL into that under CAL. Until now, only fatigue test on FCI life and fatigue life of notched elements and

data or/and the fatigue curves under CAL have been structures [29–33], which has been summarized in part

given in many handbooks of the fatigue and mechanical elsewhere [34]. It was shown [34,35] that not only single

properties of metals [19–21], and empirical fatigue for- tension overloading increases FCI life and fatigue life,

mulas were applied in the fatigue design of metallic but also periodic overloading more efficiently increases

structures [22–25]. the FCI life and fatigue life of notched elements and

In the real service loads of engineering structures, structures as well. As a result, tension overloading was

small loads occupy the greatest portion of the load spec- taken as an approach for increasing fatigue life

trum [15,24,25]. Therefore, how to distinguish the small [34,36,37]. Most past research on overload effects on

load cycles that do not result in fatigue damage in metals FCI life or fatigue life was not correlated with life pre-

and then omit them is very important in load spectrum diction. However, attempts were made to apply the

compilation and life prediction of structure members, fatigue curves obtained after overloading to predict the

and in fatigue tests of full-scale structures under random fatigue life under VAL, and the prediction accuracy of

VAL, which are the most expensive type of test [26]. the fatigue life of notched elements was increased to

However, the criterion for omitting small loads in the some extent [33]. On the other hand, the overload effect

load spectrum has not been clearly expounded [2], or an on the fatigue life could not be expressed by a good

empirical criterion was adopted [15,22–25]. fatigue formula at that time [33]. Therefore, a generally

There exist more than 50 models for cumulative accepted life prediction model could not be obtained.

fatigue damage and life prediction, which were reviewed Quantitative analysis of the overload effect on FCI life

recently [27]. However, none of above-mentioned mod- of notched elements could only be done after a good

els can be generally accepted, and more efforts are formula for FCI life was put forward [38–40].

needed in order to provide general and reliable cumulat-

ive fatigue damage analysis and life prediction models 2.1. FCI life formula

to structure designers [27]. In past fatigue research, most

attention was focused on searching for damage functions In most engineering applications, the nominal stress

but further study on the basic formula for fatigue life applied to the structural elements is kept below the yield

has been more or less ignored [27]. This may be the stress of the metal. Consequently, the structural member,

main reason why universally accepted cumulative as a whole, is elastic under service loads but plastic

fatigue damage rule and life prediction models could not deformation will occur to form a small plastic zone at

be obtained [28]. the notch root because of stress concentration, as shown

Research on the basic fatigue formula, the criterion in Fig. 1 [38].

for omitting small loads, the rule for cumulative fatigue Fatigue crack initiation at the notch root may be

damage and models for predicting the FCI life and its assumed to occur due to fracture of a hypothetical

probability distribution under VAL are comprehensively fatigue element located at the notch root, as shown in

studied and summarized in the present paper. Otherwise, Fig. 1. Thus, the fatigue life of a smooth test specimen

models for general and reliable cumulative fatigue dam- can be taken as the FCI life of a notched element if the

age analysis and life prediction could be obtained. Spe- fatigue element at the notch root undergoes the same

cial emphasis will be placed on taking the materials stress–strain history as the metal at the notch tip. This

characteristics, structure details and real loads applied hypothesis was expounded by many investigators [41–

to structures into consideration in the fatigue research. 43] and developed into the local strain approach [43],

Experimental procedures based on the theoretical analy- which is still used for predicting FCI life of notched

sis are also required. Then, a discussion is made on the elements [2,7,8].

applicability of Miner’s rule for cumulative fatigue dam- From the above model, it can be seen that the govern-

age and the conditions under which Miner’s rule can be ing parameters for fatigue crack initiation at the notch

used. Finally, topics for further fatigue research are ten-

tatively proposed.

sidered as the overload by comparison with smaller loads

in the load spectrum [15,24,25]. Therefore, it is neces-

sary and important to investigate the overload effects on Fig. 1. Schematic illustration of the plastic zone and the hypothetical

FCI life and fatigue life of structural members. A lot of fatigue element at the notch root [38].

X. Zheng / International Journal of Fatigue 23 (2001) 751–766 753

root are the fatigue life of smooth specimens under cyc- tension overload applied to notched elements before

lic strain and the local strain range at the notch root. The fatigue testing is shown in Fig. 2 [40,54], where the

local strain range should be correlated with the nominal nominal stress applied to the notched elements during

cyclic stress applied to the notched elements for con- overloading, SOL, is higher than the maximum cyclic

venient applications in engineering. Based on the above- nominal stress, Smax. In any case, the value of SOL is

mentioned hypothesis, the modified Manson–Coffin for- kept below the yield stress of the metal, and the notched

mula for fatigue life under cyclic strain [44] and the element, as a whole, remains elastic, a situation encoun-

approximate formula for local strain range at the notch tered in most engineering applications.

tip [45], the formula for FCI life of notched elements Overloading before fatigue testing (see Fig. 2) will

was developed as follows [38]: result in greater local strain and compressive residual

2/1+n −2

stress, and a larger plastic zone at the notch root, than

Ni⫽C[⌬s2/1+n

eqv ⫺(⌬seqv)th ] (1) does fatigue loading (see Fig. 1). The overload effect on

and the FCI life and then the fatigue life should be attributed

to the strain hardening of the metal and the compressive

冪2(1−R)K ⌬S,

1 residual stress in the surface layer at the notch root

⌬seqv⫽ t (2)

induced by overloading [33,34]. Therefore, it may be

deduced that the overload effect would be related to the

where C and (⌬seqv)th are, respectively, the FCI resist- local strain induced by overloading. The local strain at

ance coefficient and the FCI threshold, and n is the the notch tip induced by overloading can be calculated

strain-hardening exponent. In Eq. (2), ⌬S and R are the by the following equation [40,45]:

冋 册

nominal stress range and stress ratio, respectively, and Kt

1/1+n

is the stress concentration factor of the notched elements. 1

eOL⫽2 (⌬seqv)2OL , (3)

When R=⫺1, ⌬seqv=1/2Kt⌬S=KtSa; Sa is nominal stress ESk

amplitude. As a result, ⌬seqv may be referred to as the

equivalent stress amplitude. It may be seen from Eqs. where E and Sk are, respectively, the Young’s modulus

(1) and (2) that Eq. (1) shows the effect of the stress ratio and the strength coefficient in Hollomon’s equation [55].

on the FCI life and can thus be conveniently applied to (⌬seqv)OL is the equivalent stress amplitude applied to

predict the FCI life of structures under variable-ampli- the notched elements during overloading, and can be cal-

tude loading, where not only the stress range but also culated by Eq. (2) taking the value of R to be zero,

the stress ratio is varied. 1

(⌬seqv)OL⫽

冑2

It was shown that Eq. (1) can be applied and fits well KtSOL. (4)

the test results of FCI life obtained by testing notched

elements of various geometries under various stress

ratios [38,46–52], and test results for the FCI life of In a set of fatigue tests, (⌬seqv)OL and thus eOL are

notched elements experiencing overloading [39,40]. kept constant. Then, the effects of eOL and (⌬seqv)OL on

It may be worthwhile to note that C, the FCI resistance FCI life can be quantitatively analyzed by using Eq.

coefficient, may be considered to be the equivalent stress (1) [39].

amplitude when Ni=1/4 cycle, equivalent to the crack

initiation at the notch root during a tension test. The FCI 2.3. Overload effect factor

threshold, (⌬seqv)th, is the upper limit of the equivalent

stress amplitude, below or equal to which no fatigue Analysis of the results obtained by using Eq. (1) to

damage will occur in the metal at the notch root and the fit test results of the overload effect on FCI life, as shown

FCI life tends to be infinite [38]. Both C and (⌬seqv)th in Fig. 3, reveals that tension overload has no significant

are material constants, and can be predicted from the effect on the FCI resistance coefficient C in Eq. (1)

tensile properties [1,53]. If the values of C and (⌬seqv)th (which could also be deduced from the physical signifi-

are obtained and substituted into Eq. (1), the expression cance of C given in Section 2.1), but increases the FCI

for FCI life can be given without the need for fatigue

tests. Some examples of predicting FCI life from tensile

properties have been given in [50,51,53].

overload effect

load effect on FCI life should be designed on the basis

of theoretical analysis and practical applications. The Fig. 2. Schematic illustration of tension overloading [40,54].

754 X. Zheng / International Journal of Fatigue 23 (2001) 751–766

Fig. 3. Effect of tension overloading on the FCI life of aluminum alloys: (a) LY12CZ alloy, (b) LC4CS alloy [40].

stress amplitude (⌬seqv)OL, the longer the FCI life and

the higher the FCI threshold (see Fig. 3) [40]. The general expression for overload effect on FCI thres-

Fatigue test results of notched elements made of hold can be written as follows:

aluminum alloys, titanium and ultrahigh strength steels

(⌬seqv)th⫽(⌬seqv)th0⫹aeOL, (6)

[33] also show that the higher the overload, the higher

the increase of the fatigue limit and fatigue life, which where (⌬seqv)th and (⌬seqv)th0 are, respectively, the FCI

show the same pattern as those in Fig. 3. At that time, threshold with and without experiencing tension over-

however, quantitative analysis of the overload effects on loading, and a is a constant.

the fatigue limit and fatigue life was not given [33]. This Substituting Eq. (4) into Eq. (6), we can obtain the

pattern was also observed in experiments for the over- correlation between FCI threshold and overloading equi-

load effects on the corrosion FCI life of LY12CZ alloy valent stress amplitude as follows:

sheets [56].

(⌬seqv)th⫽(⌬seqv)th0⫹z(⌬seqv)2/1+n

OL , (7)

Using Eq. (3) to calculate eOL and plotting the data of

eOL and (⌬seqv)th as in Fig. 4, one can obtain a straight where z may be defined as the overload effect factor.

line between eOL and (⌬seqv)th. Regression analysis gives z=6.57×10-4 for LY12CZ alloy sheets and z=2.98×10⫺4

the following equations [40]: for LC4CS alloy sheets.

앫 for LY12CZ alloy sheets 2.4. FCI life formula considering the overload effect

(⌬seqv)th⫽176⫹2260eOL; (5a)

Substituting Eq. (7) into Eq. (1), one can obtain the

formula for FCI life with considering the overload effect

앫 for LC4CS alloy sheets as follows [40]:

(⌬seqv)th⫽174⫹2875eOL. (5b) Ni⫽C{⌬s2/1+n 2/1+n 2/1+n −2

eqv ⫺[(⌬seqv)th0⫹z(⌬seqv) OL ] } . (8)

Thus,

Ni⫽1.58⫻1013[⌬s1.78

eqv ⫺(176⫹6.57 (9)

⫻10−4(⌬seqv)1.78

OL )

1.78 −2

] ;

Ni⫽5.70⫻1013[⌬s1.89

eqv ⫺(174⫹2.98 (10)

⫻10−4(⌬seqv)1.89

OL )

1.89 −2

] .

induced by tension overloading: (a) LY12CZ alloy, (b) LC4CS alloy The above FCI life formula [Eq. (8)] reveals the corre-

[40]. lation of the FCI life with the geometry of notched

X. Zheng / International Journal of Fatigue 23 (2001) 751–766 755

elements (Kt), the cyclic loading conditions (⌬S, R), the Test results also show that tension overloading has no

tensile properties, the FCI threshold and the overload remarkable effect on the FCI life or fatigue life of the

effect factor, which characterize the interaction effect medium-carbon steel 45 (similar to 1045), butt welds of

between the higher and lower loads in the load spectrum 16Mn steel and friction-welded joints of 45 steel [57–

[40,54], and may be thought a good one. Eq. (8) combin- 62,65,66]. In other word, the overload effect factor of

ing Miner’s rule for cumulative fatigue damage can be the metals with discontinuous strain-hardening charac-

conveniently applied to predict the FCI life of metallic teristics is approximately equal to zero; i.e., z=0. There-

notched elements under VAL [40,54,56–62]. fore, Eq. (8) can be simplified into Eq. (1), and Eq. (1)

can thus be used to predict the FCI life or fatigue life

of notched elements of metals with discontinuous strain-

3. Dependence of overload effect on strain hardening characteristics under VAL [57–62,65,66].

hardening characteristics of metals Based on the above test results and analysis, it may

be thought that the value of z, the overload effect factor

3.1. Two kinds of metal of metallic notched elements, depends on the strain-

hardening characteristics of the metal, and the overload

According to their strain-hardening characteristics, effect factor z was thought to be a material constant.

metals can be divided into two kinds [55]: (1) metals In [40,46], an empirical expression was put forward to

with discontinuous strain-hardening characteristics and estimate the value of z as follows:

冉冊冉 冊

(2) metals with continuous strain-hardening character- 1/2

istics; the former with a yielding plateau on their tension E n s0.2 2

z⫽ (E·Sk)−1/1+n. (13)

curve and the latter without. Low-carbon steels and 5 ef sb

welded joints belong to the first kind, and aluminum Eq. (13) could be applicable to the notched elements

alloys, titanium alloys and ultrahigh strength steels of aluminum alloys [46,52]; however, it needs to be

belong to the second kind. checked further.

3.2. Dependence of z value on strain-hardening

characteristics

4. Criterion for omitting small loads

For the metals with continuous strain-hardening

characteristics, such as LY12CZ and LC4CS aluminum In past, the underload (or subload) was defined as the

alloys, tension overloading increases the FCI life and nominal stress amplitude lower than or equal to the

threshold of notched elements, as shown in Fig. 3. endurance limit, and the underload effect on fatigue life

Fatigue test results on notched elements of aluminum was investigated experimentally by using smooth speci-

alloys, titanium, ultrahigh strength steels also show mens. Test results showed that underload cycles applied

[33,63,64] that tension overloading increases FCI life to smooth specimens increased the fatigue life or the

and thus the fatigue life and endurance limit. In other endurance limit of low-carbon steel [67] and cast iron

words, the overload effect factor of notched elements of [68], which was called “coaxing”. However, past

metals with continuous strain-hardening characteristics research on the underload effect was not associated with

is higher than zero; i.e., z⬎0. the omission of small load cycles in life prediction

For metals with discontinuous strain-hardening [67,68].

characteristics, such as low-carbon high-strength steels The omission of small load cycles is necessary and

16Mn and 15MnVN, tension overloading has no important in compilation of the load spectrum [15,26],

appreciable effect on the FCI life and threshold of in prediction of the fatigue life and in assessment of the

notched elements, i.e., (⌬seqv)th=(⌬seqv)th0, as shown in fatigue reliability of structures [22,24], and is most cost-

Fig. 5. In notched elements with and without experienc- effective in fatigue tests of components and structures

ing overloading, the FCI life can be expressed approxi- under long-term variable-amplitude or random loading

mately as follows [58]: histories [26]. To date, some empirical criteria have been

proposed and used [22–24,26,66]. How to omit the small

앫 for 16Mn steel loads in life prediction by using the local strain approach

1.79 −2

was not clearly expounded [2,6,7].

Ni⫽3.33⫻1014[⌬s1.79

eqv ⫺459 ] ; (11)

4.1. Theoretical consideration

앫 for 15MnVN steel

It was pointed out [26] that the main problem associa-

Ni⫽5.60⫻1014[⌬s1.83

eqv ⫺361

1.83 −2

] . (12)

ted with omission of small loads is to identify the “dam-

aging” and “non-damaging” cycles. In solving this prob-

756 X. Zheng / International Journal of Fatigue 23 (2001) 751–766

Fig. 5. Effect of tension overloading on the FCI life of low-carbon high-strength steels: (a) 16Mn hot-rolled plates, (b) 15MnVN normalized

plates [58].

lem, a good formula for FCI life should first be given effect on FCI life of 15MnVN steel notched elements at

[28]. ⌬seqv⬎(⌬seqv)th, as shown in Fig. 7 [48].

Eq. (1) shows that there exists an FCI threshold Test results of the underload effect in [38,40,58] show

expressed by equivalent stress amplitude, i.e., (⌬seqv)th. again that the underload cycles have no appreciable

Theoretically, when ⌬seqvⱕ(⌬seqv)th, fatigue damage effect on the FCI life at equivalent stress amplitude

will not occur in the metal at the notch root and the FCI higher than the FCI threshold. Therefore, the FCI thres-

life tends to be infinite; otherwise, fatigue damage will hold, (⌬seqv)th in Eq. (1), could be preliminarily taken

occur and the FCI life will be limited. If the cyclic loads as the threshold to distinguish the damaging and non-

expressed by equivalent stress amplitude are lower than damaging cycles, and as the criterion for omitting small

or equal to the FCI threshold, i.e., ⌬seqvⱕ(⌬seqv)th, these load cycles in life prediction and in compilation of the

loads can be defined as the underload. If the underload load spectrum.

cycles have no appreciable effect on the FCI life at cyc- Further examination of the above conclusion was car-

lic loads higher than the FCI threshold, i.e., ried out by fatigue tests of notched friction-welded joints

⌬seqv⬎(⌬seqv)th, the FCI threshold can thus be taken as of 45 steel under more complex load spectra as shown

the criterion for omitting small loads. in Figs. 8 and 9, which were denoted as Spectrum 1 and

Based on the above considerations, experimental pro- Spectrum 2, respectively [66]. The difference between

cedures could be proposed for investigating the Spectrum 1 and Spectrum 2 is that 107 cycles of small

underload effect and the criterion for omitting small load or underload in Spectrum 1 are applied to the

loads. notched friction-welded joints before the fatigue tests

under block loading shown in Fig. 9. Spectrum 2 was

4.2. Criterion for omitting small loads for metals with used for the comparative study to determine whether the

discontinuous strain-hardening characteristics small load cycles could be omitted in the life prediction.

In the design of the load spectra, the fatigue threshold

In order to investigate the underload effect, fatigue needs to be known in advance. It was reported [60] that

tests were carried out by a two-level load spectrum the fatigue threshold is 409.2 MPa [also see Eq. (17a)]

shown in Fig. 6: the notched specimens were loaded at and the corresponding nominal stress amplitude is 204.6

⌬seqvⱕ(⌬seqv)th for 1×107 or at least 5×106 cycles first, MPa for notched friction-welded joints of 45 steel with

and then cyclically loaded at ⌬seqv⬎(⌬seqv)th, to see if Kt=2.0 and at R=⫺1. In Spectrum 1, 107 load cycles at

the pre-underload cycles have an effect on FCI life or

not [38,40,54].

The underload up to 107 cycles has no remarkable

Fig. 6. Schematic illustration of fatigue test program to investigate Fig. 7. Test results of underload effect on FCI life of 15MnVN steel

underload effect on FCI life. notched specimens expressed by Eq. (12) [48].

X. Zheng / International Journal of Fatigue 23 (2001) 751–766 757

words, the first continuous 107 cycles under

⌬seqvⱕ(⌬seqv)th (=409.2 MPa) do not result in fatigue

damage in the notched friction-welded joints. This con-

firms again that the FCI threshold in Eq. (1) can be taken

as the criterion for omitting small loads for the notched

elements of metals with discontinuous strain-hardening

characteristics.

continuous strain-hardening characteristics

Fig. 8. Schematic illustration of the block loading used for investigat-

ing the underload effect on the fatigue life of notched friction-welded The 107 cycles under ⌬seqvⱕ(⌬seqv)th0 have no

joints [66]. appreciable effect on the FCI life of notched elements

of LY12CZ alloy sheets [38], which is a metal with con-

tinuous strain-hardening characteristics. The same results

were also observed for notched specimens of 30CrMnSi-

Ni2A ultrahigh strength steel and its welded joints [49].

However, tension overloading increases the FCI thres-

hold of notched elements of metals with continuous

strain-hardening characteristics [see Fig. 4 and Eq. (8)].

Whether the FCI threshold increased by tension over-

loading, i.e., (⌬seqv)th in Eq. (8), could be taken as the

criterion for omitting small loads needed to be studied

further.

For LY12CZ alloy sheets, tension overloading of

Fig. 9. Schematic illustration of the block loading for fatigue tests of

notched friction-welded joints of 45 steel for comparative study [66]. (⌬seqv)OL=620 MPa increases the FCI threshold from

(⌬seqv)th0=180 MPa to (⌬seqv)th=237 MPa [see Fig. 4

and Eq. (4) or Eq. (9)]. Thus, fatigue tests were perfor-

the nominal stress amplitude S0=195 MPa, a little lower med by the following procedures: (1) LY12CZ alloy

than the nominal fatigue stress amplitude of 204.6 MPa, notched specimens were overloaded at (⌬seqv)OL=620

are applied to the notched specimens first. Thereafter, MPa, (2) specimens were underloaded at ⌬seqvⱕ237

the five levels of nominal stress through S1 to S5 in one MPa for 5×106 cycles and (3) specimens were cyclically

load block shown in Fig. 9 are higher than 204.6 MPa loaded at ⌬seqv⬎237 MPa to determine the FCI life;

and repeated until failure of the notched friction-welded which may be illustrated schematically in Fig. 10. If the

joints. In this case, the fatigue life is defined as the load underload or small load cycles of 5×106 at ⌬seqvⱕ237

blocks applied to the notched test specimen until its MPa after overloading of (⌬seqv)OL=620 MPa had no

final fracture. remarkable effect on the FCI life of LY12CZ notched

The fatigue test results of notched friction-welded elements expressed by Eq. (9), the FCI threshold

joints of 45 steel under Spectrum 1 shown in Fig. 8 and increased by overloading of (⌬seqv)OL=620 MPa could

Spectrum 2 shown in Fig. 9 are listed in Table 1 accord- be taken as the criterion for omitting small loads for

ing to the order of increasing fatigue life. LY12CZ notched elements experiencing the same over-

It is well known that fatigue test results of elements loading.

under both CAL and VAL are dispersed in a wide scatter Results obtained from the above-mentioned fatigue

band, and it is usual to employ a log-normal distribution test are shown in Fig. 11 [54]. It can be seen from Fig.

to represent the statistical variability of fatigue life 11 that the underload or small load cycles of 5×106 at

[8,69]. It was also shown that the fatigue lives under ⌬seqvⱕ(⌬seqv)th=237 MPa, the equivalent stress ampli-

both Spectrum 1 and Spectrum 2 follow the log-normal tude below or equal to the FCI threshold increased by

distribution and the logarithmic mean values of fatigue overloading of (⌬seqv)OL=620 MPa, have no appreciable

life agree well with each other [60]. The results obtained effect on the FCI life of LY12CZ notched elements,

from the further statistical test suggest that there is no which experienced the same magnitude of overloading

significant difference between the two logarithmic mean of (⌬seqv)OL=620 MPa.

fatigue lives, and between the two logarithmic standard Based on the above test results and analysis, it may

deviations under the significance level of 5% [66]. It can be thought that the FCI threshold increased by over-

thus be thought that the fatigue test results of the notched loading could be taken as the criterion for omitting small

friction-welded joints of 45 steel under Spectrum 1 and load cycles in the life prediction of notched elements

758 X. Zheng / International Journal of Fatigue 23 (2001) 751–766

Table 1

The tested fatigue life (Nbe) and cumulative fatigue damage (Dce) of 45 steel friction-welded joints under Spectrum 1 and Spectrum 2 [66]

Nbe (block) Dce log Nbe log Dce Nbe (block) Dce log Nbe log Dce

2 3.85 0.5289 0.5850 ⫺0.2767 5.19 0.7136 0.7151 ⫺0.1466

3 5.11 0.7032 0.7087 ⫺0.1530 6.73 0.9254 0.8280 ⫺0.0337

4 5.32 0.7316 0.7259 ⫺0.1358 7.45 1.0248 0.8732 0.0106

5 8.92 1.2264 0.9503 0.0886 7.94 1.0923 0.9000 0.0383

6 8.92 1.2264 0.9503 0.0886 12.15 1.6709 1.0846 0.2230

7 11.43 1.5720 1.0581 0.1964

8 13.22 1.8178 1.1212 0.2595

9 14.81 2.0359 1.1704 0.3087

Xa 8.35 – 0.8692 0.0075 7.20 0.8284 ⫺0.0333

Sb – – 0.2320 0.2320 0.1745 0.1745

a

The mean value.

b

The standard deviation.

prediction

the overload effect factor z, which can be used to charac-

terize the load interaction effect [1,40,54,56–62].

Besides, the FCI threshold in Eq. (1) or Eq. (8) can be

taken as the criterion for omitting small loads in the life

prediction and the compilation of load spectrum. Conse-

Fig. 10. Schematic illustration of the procedures for fatigue tests to quently, the FCI life of metallic notched elements could

investigate the underload effect on the FCI life of LY12CZ notched be predicted by using Miner’s rule and Eq. (8) with or

elements: (1) overloaded at (⌬seqv)OL=620 MPa, (2) underloaded at

⌬seqvⱕ237 MPa for 5×106 cycles and (3) cyclically loaded at

without taking the overload effect into consideration,

⌬seqv⬎237 MPa to determine the FCI life [54]. depending on the strain-hardening characteristics of the

metal from which the notched structural elements are

made.

In order to predict the FCI life of notched elements

under VAL, the expression for calculating the fatigue

damage — i.e., the fatigue damage function, Dj — can

be defined according to Miner’s rule as follows:

1

Dj ⫽ (14)

Ni,j

1

⫽ .

C{⌬s 2/1+n

eqv,j −[(⌬seqv)th0+z(⌬seqv)2/1+n

OL ]

2/1+n −2

}

Fig. 11. Test results of FCI life (indicated by circles) of LY12CZ

notched specimens obtained from the fatigue test carried out according And the cumulative fatigue damage can be computed as:

to the procedure shown in Fig. 10, and the solid curve drawn according

to Eq. (9) [54].

冘

k

nj

Dc ⫽ (15)

N

j⫽1 i,j

of metals of continuous strain-hardening characteristics,

冘

k

when the notched elements experience overloading of nj

⫽ .

the same direction and magnitude. This conclusion was

j⫽1

C{⌬s 2/1+n

eqv,j −[(⌬seqv)th0+z(⌬seqv)2/1+n

OL ]

2/1+n −2

}

further verified by the FCI life prediction and test results

of LY12CZ notched elements with a stress concentration In Eq. (15), k is the number of levels of the equivalent

factor of 4.0 under a flight-to-flight spectrum [40]. stress amplitude. It can be seen from Eqs. (14) and (15)

X. Zheng / International Journal of Fatigue 23 (2001) 751–766 759

that a good formula for the FCI life or fatigue life con- Then, computing the cumulative fatigue damage

sidering the stress ratio effect is the key point for accur- according to Eq. (15) and the equivalent stress ampli-

ate computation of the cumulative fatigue damage in the tude spectrum of 45 steel notched elements.

life prediction of structure members under VAL, where 3. Obtaining the fatigue life of 45 steel notched elements

the stress ratios are varied. Without a good formula for under the load spectrum shown in Fig. 12 when the

the FCI life or the fatigue life, the accurate life prediction cumulative fatigue damage reaches critical value,

under VAL would be impossible. i.e., Dc=1.0.

5.2. Life prediction of notched elements of metals with The predicted fatigue life of notched elements of 45

discontinuous strain-hardening characteristics steel under the load spectrum shown in Fig. 12 is 11.2

blocks and the logarithmic mean value of 9 test data

45 carbon steel has discontinuous strain-hardening is 10.6 blocks [57]. Good agreement exists between the

characteristics. Test results show that tension over- predicted life of the 45 steel notched elements and test

loading has no appreciable effect on the fatigue life of results.

notched elements of 45 steel (i.e., z=0) [57]. Therefore, For notched friction-welded joints of 45 steel under

the fatigue life of 45 steel notched elements under VAL Spectrum 1 in Fig. 8 and Spectrum 2 in Fig. 9, the

can be predicted by using Eqs. (14) and (15), taking z=0 fatigue life predicted by the above procedures and Eq.

and Dc=1.0. (17a) is 7.3 blocks, which agrees well with the test

Since the fatigue life was measured by using small results listed in Table 1 [60].

size notched specimens, the fatigue life is mostly The procedures mentioned above were also used for

expended in the crack initiation stage and can be accurately predicting the FCI life or fatigue life of

approximately taken as the FCI life, particularly in the notched elements of metals with discontinuous strain-

long life range [42]. The expression for the fatigue life hardening characteristics, such as 15MnVN steel

of 45 steel notched elements was obtained from test [57,62,70], old bridge steel [65] and 16Mn steel butt

results as follows [57]: welds [58,59].

1.736 −2

Nf⫽2.39⫻1014(⌬s1.736

eqv ⫺303 ) . (16)

5.3. Life prediction of notched elements of metals with

continuous strain-hardening characteristics

The load spectrum used for predicting and testing the

fatigue life of the 45 steel notched elements is shown in

Fig. 12. For 45 steel notched elements, the fatigue life LY12CZ aluminum alloy belongs to the kind of met-

can be predicted by following procedures. als with continuous strain-hardening characteristics, and

has the overload effect factor greater than zero (i.e.,

1. Substituting all of the nominal stress ranges ⌬S and z⬎0). Therefore, the load interaction effect needs to be

the stress ratios R (=⫺1) in the load spectrum and the taken into account in life prediction. In this case, Eq. (9)

stress concentration factor Kt (=2.0) of the notched should be substituted into Eq. (14) to define the fatigue

elements into Eq. (2) to transform the load spectrum damage function of the notched elements of LY12CZ

in Fig. 12 into the equivalent stress amplitude spec- alloy. The procedures for predicting the FCI life of

trum, and omit all of the equivalent stress amplitudes LY12CZ notched elements was given as follows [40].

lower than or equal to the FCI threshold.

2. Substituting Eq. (16) into Eq. (14) to define the 1. Calculating the value of (⌬seqv)OL from the maximum

fatigue damage function of 45 steel notched elements. nominal stress taken from the load spectrum and the

Kt value (=4.0) of the notched elements by using

Eq. (2).

2. Substituting (⌬seqv)OL into Eq. (9) to obtain the

expression for the FCI life of notched specimens

experiencing overloading.

3. Substituting all of the nominal stress ranges and the

stress ratios in the load spectrum and the Kt value

of the notched element into Eq. (2) to compute the

equivalent stress amplitude spectrum and omit all of

the equivalent stress amplitudes lower than or equal

Fig. 12. Load spectrum for predicting and testing the fatigue life of to the FCI threshold increased by overloading.

45 steel notched elements [57]: (1) S1=240 MPa, n1=105 cycles; (2)

S2=350 MPa, n2=8×104 cycles; (3) S3=400 MPa, n3=2.5×104 cycles; 4. Substituting the expression for the FCI life of

(4) S4=500 MPa, n4=104 cycles; (5) S5=S3, n5=n3; (6) S6=S2, n6=n2; (7) LY12CZ notched elements experiencing overloading

S7=S1, n7=n1. into Eq. (14). Then, computing the cumulative fatigue

760 X. Zheng / International Journal of Fatigue 23 (2001) 751–766

damage according to Eq. (15) and the equivalent expressions for the curves of fatigue life with given sur-

stress amplitude spectrum. vivability and the probability distribution of fatigue

5. Obtaining the FCI life of the notched elements under strength [65,72,75].

VAL when the value of the cumulative fatigue dam-

age reaches 1.0. 6.2. Prediction of probability distribution of fatigue

life of notched elements of metals with discontinuous

The FCI life of LY12CZ alloy notched elements with strain-hardening characteristics

Kt=4.0 under a flight-by-flight random load spectrum

predicted by using the above procedures is 1441 flight Based on the above assumption and the procedures in

hours while the mean value of 4 test data is 1848 flight Section 5.2, the probability distribution of the fatigue life

hours; the predicted FCI life is about 0.78 of test results of notched friction-welded joints of 45 steel under VAL

and shorter than the test results but on the safe side [40]. shown in Figs. 8 and 9 could be predicted by using the

The above procedures were also adopted to predict the expressions of fatigue life with given survivability (Sv),

FCI life of LY12CZ notched elements under VAL in a which are rewritten as follows [66]:

corrosive environment of 3.5% NaCl solution. The pre-

dicted corrosion FCI life of LY12CZ notched elements 앫 Sv=50%,

under VAL agrees well with test results [52,56]. 1.764 −2

Nf⫽2.181⫻1014[⌬s1.764

eqv ⫺409.2 ] ; (17a)

life under VAL 1.764 −2

Nf⫽1.098⫻1014[⌬s1.764

eqv ⫺348.6 ] ; (17b)

6.1. Basic assumptions

앫 Sv=95%,

It is well known that FCI life and fatigue life test Nf⫽1.514⫻1014[⌬s1.764 1.764 −2

eqv ⫺375.7 ] ; (17c)

results under both CAL and VAL have great dispersion

[8,20,52,69], especially for brittle ceramic materials

[71,72] and some composites [73]. No matter whether 앫 Sv=5%,

the predicted mean fatigue life agrees well with that of Nf⫽3.143⫻1014[⌬s1.764 1.764 −2

eqv ⫺445.6 ] ; (17d)

test results under VAL, it is still hard, however, to draw

a conclusion about the accuracy of the life prediction

model. Usually, the log-normal distribution is used to 앫 Sv=0.1%,

represent statistical variability of fatigue life and fatigue Nf⫽4.333⫻1014[⌬s1.764 1.764 −2

eqv ⫺480.2 ] . (17e)

test results under VAL [8,20,69,74]. If the predicted

probability distribution of fatigue life under VAL agreed

with that of fatigue test results under the same VAL

spectrum, the life prediction model could be thought The predicted probability distribution of fatigue life

reliable [1,2,18]. On the other hand, a new model could and the test results of 45 steel notched friction-welded

be provided for the fatigue reliability assessment of joints under VAL shown in Figs. 8 and 9 are shown in

the structures. Fig. 13(a), where the mean rank was taken to be the

It was assumed that the fatigue life curve with given

survivability could be used to predict the fatigue life of

the notched elements under VAL with corresponding

survivability. If the fatigue life with different surviv-

ability under VAL is obtained based on the above

assumption, the probability distribution of the fatigue life

under VAL can be easily determined. The above

assumption has been checked by lots of test results

[57,60–62,65,66,70].

In order to meet the requirement of the life prediction

with given survivability and the fatigue reliability assess-

ment of structures, fatigue test results under CAL should

be analyzed statistically. Then, the fatigue life curves

with given survivability — the so-called P–S–N Fig. 13. Predicted probability distribution of fatigue life (a) and the

curves — and the corresponding expressions could be critical cumulative damage (b) of 45 steel notched friction-welded

given. Procedures were developed to determine joints under VAL shown in Figs. 8 and 9 and the test results [66].

X. Zheng / International Journal of Fatigue 23 (2001) 751–766 761

should be pointed out that the test results shown in Fig.

13 include all of the ones obtained under Spectrum 1 in

Fig. 8 and Spectrum 2 in Fig. 9 because they are thought

to be from the same population [66], as mentioned in

Section 4.2.

Dividing the predicted fatigue life with given surviv-

ability by the predicted life (in blocks) with 50% Sv, one

can easily obtain the critical value of the cumulated

fatigue damage with corresponding survivability, Dc,

which is also plotted on normal probability paper as

Fig. 14. Illustration of the load spectrum for predicting and testing

shown in Fig. 13(b). As may be seen, the predicted the FCI life of notched specimens of LY12CZ aluminum alloy sheets,

fatigue life and values of the cumulated fatigue damage, which was converted into an equivalent stress amplitude spectrum as

Dc, of 45 steel notched friction-welded joints follow the follows [57]: (1) ⌬seqv=400 MPa, n=30 cycles; (2) ⌬seqv=350 MPa,

log-normal distribution, which agrees well with test n=60 cycles; (3) ⌬seqv=300 MPa, n=480 cycles; (4) ⌬seqv=280 MPa,

n=2000 cycles; (5) ⌬seqv=250 MPa, n=3000 cycles; (6) ⌬seqv=180

results [66].

MPa, n=3000 cycles; (7) ⌬seqv=350 MPa, n=60 cycles; (8) ⌬seqv=300

Similar results were obtained for the notched elements MPa, n=480 cycles.

and welded joints of low-carbon steels with the discon-

tinuous strain-hardening characteristics. The predicted

probability distributions of the fatigue life and the cumu- with survivability were given in [57] and rewritten as

lative fatigue damage of low-carbon steel notched follows:

elements and welded joints follow the log-normal distri-

bution, and agree well with the test results [57,60– 앫 for 50% Sv,

62,65,66,70]. It may be thought that the fatigue formula 1.78 −2

Ni⫽3.71⫻1013[⌬s1.78

eqv ⫺223.7 ] ; (18a)

[i.e., Eq. (1)], the criterion for omitting the small loads

and Miner’s rule can be successfully used to predict the

fatigue life and its probability distribution of notched 앫 for 95% Sv,

elements and welded joints of metals with discontinuous

Ni⫽1.72⫻1013[⌬s1.78

eqv ⫺196.1

1.78 −2

] ; (18b)

strain-hardening characteristics under VAL. In other

words, the generally applied life prediction model is

obtained for notched elements and welded joints of met- 앫 for 84.1% Sv,

als with discontinuous strain-hardening characteristics 1.78 −2

Ni⫽2.28⫻1013[⌬s1.78

eqv ⫺209.4 ] ; (18c)

under VAL through our recent research.

life of notched elements of metals with continuous 1.78 −2

Ni⫽6.35⫻1013[⌬s1.78

eqv ⫺233.5 ] ; (18d)

strain-hardening characteristics

strain-hardening characteristics, the probability distri- 1.78 −2

Ni⫽9.18⫻1013[⌬s1.78

eqv ⫺238.2 ] . (18e)

bution of fatigue life under VAL could be predicted, in

principle, from the above-mentioned assumption and the

procedures in Section 5.3. Preliminary attempts were

made to predict the FCI life and the probability distri- Using Eqs. (18) and the procedures in Section 5.3,

bution of notched elements of LY12CZ aluminum alloy the FCI lives of LY12CZ notched elements with given

under block loading, as shown in Fig. 14 [57]. survivability under the load spectrum shown in Fig. 14

Before the fatigue tests under VAL shown in Fig. 14, can be predicted and are listed in Table 2, where the test

a single overloading of (⌬seqv)OL=620 MPa was applied results are also presented. Dividing the FCI lives with

to the LY12CZ notched elements. Hence, the same over- given survivability by the FCI life with 50% Sv, the

loading of (⌬seqv)OL=620 MPa should be also applied to values of the cumulative fatigue damage can be obtained

the LY12CZ notched specimens before the fatigue tests and are also listed in Table 2. Plotting the logarithmic

to determine the FCI life curves with given survivability values of the predicted fatigue life and the cumulative

under CAL, as shown in Fig. 2. Then, the test results fatigue damage with given survivability on normal prob-

for the FCI life of LY12CZ sheets under CAL were ana- ability paper, straight lines can be obtained as shown in

lyzed by using the procedures given in [61]. Fig. 15, where the test results are also shown.

The expressions for the FCI life of LY12CZ sheets The predicted FCI life of LY12CZ notched elements

762 X. Zheng / International Journal of Fatigue 23 (2001) 751–766

Table 2

The predicted FCI lives with given survivability and the test results of LY12CZ notched elements under block loading shown in Fig. 14 [56]

Predicted FCI lives with given survivability

Ni (blocks) 27.9 49.6 118 275 467

Dc 0.236 0.42 1.0 2.33 3.95

Test results

Specimen no. 1 2 3 4 5 6

Sv (%) 87.5 75 62.5 50 37.5 25

Ni (blocks) 57.1 81.1 94.1 103.8 106.1 112.1

Dc 0.483 0.686 0.796 0.878 0.898 0.948

in Eq. (8): C, (⌬seqv)th0, n and z, which must each follow

a certain respective distribution. If the probability distri-

bution of these material constants can be predicted or

experimentally determined, the FCI life curves with

given survivability at various amplitudes of (⌬seqv)OL

could be obtained from the probability distribution of the

above-mentioned four constants, and used for predicting

the probability distribution of fatigue life under VAL.

Fig. 15. Prediction of the probability distribution of FCI life and test

results of notched elements of LY12CZ sheets under VAL shown in

7. Factors affecting overload effect and

Fig. 14 [56]. applicability of Miner’s rule

with 5O% Sv is 118 blocks, a little longer than 94 blocks, or not Miner’s rule could be adopted in the accurate life

the mean value of test results (see Table 2). From Table prediction of metallic notched elements depends upon

2 and Fig. 15, it can be seen that the predicted results the fatigue formula selected and the value of the over-

of the probability distribution of fatigue life under VAL load effect factor, z. Apart from considering the strain-

could be thought to agree with the test results [57] and hardening characteristics of metals, however, the follow-

the test results are almost within the range of the pre- ing factors have effects on the value of z and should

dicted FCI lives for respectively 15.9% and 84.1% Sv, be taken into account in life prediction using Miner’s

i.e., within ±1.0s scatter band. rule [76].

However, the test results of the FCI life at higher sur-

vivability are a little longer but those at lower surviv- 7.1. Effect of specimen geometry on overload effect

ability are shorter than those predicted. The reasons for factor

this discrepancy may be that the sample size of the

fatigue tests is too small [57] and the mechanical proper- The overload equal to the yield stress of the metal

ties of the LY12CZ sheets varied in a large range applied to 16Mn and 15MnVN steel smooth specimens

[40,54,57]. Besides, the strain-hardening exponent n in decreases the fatigue life and fatigue limit; i.e., the over-

Eqs. (18) may be a random variant because it is a load effect factor for the smooth specimen of low-carbon

material constant. The preliminary results mentioned high-strength steels has negative value, z⬍0

above, however, show that the procedures introduced in [1,48,58,76]. On the other hand, underload cycles

this section would be feasible, and need to be further applied to smooth specimens will result in the increase

verified by more test results. of the fatigue life [67,68]. As a result, the fatigue life

In engineering practice, the maximum nominal stress of smooth specimens of low-carbon steels, which was

applied to the various structure elements is different and predicted by using Eqs. (14) and (15) and taking z=0,

could not be determined in advance. Consequently, it is will be longer than test results when the greater stress

necessary to determine the FCI curves with given surviv- (i.e., overload) is applied to smooth specimens first; or

ability after overloading of different amplitudes of the predicted fatigue life will be shorter than test results

(⌬seqv)OL by fatigue tests, which are too expensive and when the smaller stress is applied to smooth specimens

time-consuming. This problem needs to be solved in a first. The test results given in [77] show agreement with

new way. the above argument.

X. Zheng / International Journal of Fatigue 23 (2001) 751–766 763

However, the fatigue life of smooth specimens of tion should be paid to this point in the life prediction of

cold-worked nickel–silver wire under two-level loading riveted aircraft structures.

could be accurately predicted by using Miner’s rule

[57,69]. 7.4. Effect of surface strain hardening

7.2. Overload effect factor of joints Surface strain hardening is an effective technical mea-

sure to increase FCI life and fatigue life

Welded, bolted and riveted joints are widely applied [36,37,67,68,79–82]. Test results [61,82] show that over-

in various structures, and often are the critical location load has no remarkable effect on the FCI life and fatigue

for FCI. Therefore, it is necessary to investigate the life of elements with a cold-worked hole and hammer-

overload effect and the life prediction model for such penned welds when the strain induced by cold work or

joints. Generally, joints made of metal have the same by hammer penning is greater than that induced by over-

characteristics of overload effect as the corresponding loading. In this case, the FCI life or fatigue life could

metal with specific strain-hardening characteristics be predicted by using Eqs. (14) and (15) and taking z=0

[1,33,40,58–60]. Test results [78] show that welded butt [40,61,82], irrespective of the strain-hardening charac-

joints of 16Mn steel have the same overload effect as teristics of the metal.

that of the base metal, 16Mn steel with discontinuous

strain-hardening characteristics (i.e., z=0). 7.5. Effect of load pattern

For bolted joints of titanium alloy, a metal with con-

tinuous strain-hardening characteristics, the overload Test results [32,34,35] show that the load pattern —

increases the fatigue life and fatigue limit, which means in particular, the regular periodic overload — has a much

that the value of z is greater than zero (i.e., z⬎0) [33]. greater effect on the FCI life and fatigue life of notched

elements of metals with continuous strain-hardening

7.3. Effect of overload magnitude on fatigue life of characteristics than has the single overloading. In the

aluminum riveted joints condition of periodic overloading, Eqs. (14) and (15)

could hardly be used to predict the FCI life accurately

Test results of the overload magnitude on the fatigue and a conservative life prediction would given [35,56].

life of aluminum alloy riveted joints [31] are shown in However, preliminary attempts were made to accurately

Fig. 16, where the pre-stress is higher than the maximum predict the FCI life of LY12CZ alloy notched elements

cyclic stress in fatigue tests, and could be taken as an in a corrosive environment taking the secondary over-

overload. load effect into account, and the predicted FCI life

It can be seen from Fig. 16 that the smaller pre-stress agrees well with test results [52,56]. More details on how

results in a decrease of the fatigue life and fatigue limit to take the secondary overload effect into account are

(i.e., z⬍0), while the greater pre-stress increases the given elsewhere [56]. However, the load pattern effect

fatigue life and fatigue limit (i.e., z⬎0). This may imply on FCI life and fatigue life, the applicability of Miner’s

that the same riveted joint of aluminum alloy would have rule and the life prediction model under VAL (in parti-

a shorter fatigue life in civil aircraft structures since civil cular, under random variable-amplitude loads such as

aircraft experience smaller overloads, while it would FALLSTAF) need to be investigated further.

have a longer fatigue life in a fighter aircraft since a

fighter aircraft experiences greater overloads [15]. Atten-

8. Concluding remarks and further research

structures and machines contain a geometric disconti-

nuity — i.e., a notch in the broad sense — where the

stress concentration occurs and the fatigue crack

initiates. As a result, it is important to investigate the

fatigue behavior and life prediction model of notched

elements of metals.

From the test results and analysis in foregoing sec-

tions, it can be seen that accurate prediction of the FCI

life or fatigue life under VAL requires a perfect formula

for FCI life or fatigue life, and the rule for cumulative

Fig. 16. Overload effect on the fatigue life of riveted joints of alumi-

num alloy; (1) prestress of 240 MPa (35 ksi) applied to riveted joints, fatigue damage and the criterion for omitting small

(2) without applying prestress and (3) prestress of 123 MPa (18 ksi) loads.

applied to riveted joints [31,34]. Eq. (8) reveals the correlation between FCI life and

764 X. Zheng / International Journal of Fatigue 23 (2001) 751–766

element geometry (Kt), cyclic loading conditions (⌬S, of the above-mentioned metals. Moreover, the prob-

R), material constants [i.e., the FCI threshold, (⌬seqv)th, ability distribution of the material constants in Eq. (8) —

and the FCI resistance coefficient, C] and the overload i.e., C, (⌬seqv)th, n and z — should be investigated. In

effect factor (z). It provides the theoretical basis for particular, the procedures for predicting the probability

investigating the criterion for the omission of small loads distribution of FCI life under VAL need to be studied

and for defining the fatigue damage function. further.

The FCI threshold in Eq. (1) could be taken as the Furthermore, structural elements often operate under

criterion for omitting small loads in the load spectrum multi-axial stress conditions. Therefore, it is necessary

of notched elements of metals with discontinuous strain- to do more research on the cumulative fatigue damage

hardening characteristics, while the FCI threshold in Eq. rule, the criterion for omitting small loads, the life pre-

(8) could be taken as the criterion for omitting small diction model and the fatigue reliability assessment for

loads for notched elements of metals with continuous structure elements of metals, especially with continuous

strain-hardening characteristics in compiling the load strain-hardening characteristics, under multi-axial stress

spectrum, in predicting the FCI life and in the fatigue state with variable amplitude.

tests of full-scale structure members under random VAL.

Miner’s rule can be thought to be applicable for com-

puting the cumulative fatigue damage in FCI life predic- Acknowledgements

tion if a suitable expression for FCI life or fatigue life

is adopted and the load interaction effect is taken into The author greatly appreciates the graduate students

account. The overload effect factor, z in Eq. (8), could who made many contributions to the fatigue research

be adopted to characterize the load interaction effect. summarized in the present paper.

According to Miner’s rule, the fatigue damage function

could be defined by Eqs. (14) and (15), which can be

used to compute the cumulative fatigue damage. The References

accurate life prediction of notched elements can thus be

obtained when the value of the cumulative fatigue dam- [1] Zheng XL. Quantitative theory of metal fatigue. Xi’an: Pub-

age reaches 1.0; i.e., Dc=1.0. lishing House of Northwestern Polytechnical University (NPU),

Based on the above description, the fatigue formula 1994 [in Chinese].

[2] Zhao MP. Handbook of strain fatigue analysis. Beijing: Pub-

is critical in defining the criterion for omitting small lishing House of Science, 1988 [in Chinese].

loads, and the fatigue damage function and the cumulat- [3] Kim YH, Speaker SM, Gordon DE, Manning SD, Wei RP. Devel-

ive fatigue damage computation. Of course, the above opment of fatigue and crack propagation design and analysis

conclusions need to be checked further. methodology in a corrosive environment for typical mechan-

For notched elements and welded joints of metals with ically-fastened joints. In: Report NO. NADC-83126-60, vol.I

(AD-A136414), 1983.

discontinuous strain-hardening characteristics, the gener- [4] Kim YH, Speaker SM, Gordon DE, Manning SD, Wei RP. Devel-

ally applied life prediction model under VAL was opment of fatigue and crack propagation design and analysis

obtained through our recent research, and could be pro- methodology in a corrosive environment for typical mechan-

vided to structure designers. ically-fastened joints (assessment of art state). In: Report Nol

Aluminum alloys, titanium alloys and steels with NADC-83126-60, vol.2 (AD-A136415), 1983.

[5] Wanhill RJH, De Luccia JJ, Russo MT. The fatigue in aircraft

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eering as the critical structural elements operating under 713 (AD-A208-359), 1989.

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