MS Thesis Presentation by Neil Lovrich
Wednesday, June 30, 2004

(Dr. Richard Neu, Chair )

"Fretting Fatigue in Ti-6Al-4V: Experimental Characterization and Simple Design Parameter"


Fretting fatigue occurs when there is a small amplitude oscillatory movement between two contacting surfaces while the bodies are undergoing fatigue loading. Fretting fatigue conditions can substantially reduce the fatigue life of a component. Many engineering components such as Ti-6Al-4V gas turbine engine disks in military aircraft commonly experience fretting fatigue conditions that can potentially lead to catastrophic failure of critical components.

The aim of this study is to characterize the behavior of Ti-6Al-4V under fretting fatigue conditions. Experiments are performed to analyze the influence of stress amplitude, stress ratio, and contact geometry. The effect of surface treatments such as low plasticity burnishing on the fretting fatigue life is also explored. The experimental results are being used to validate proposed crack nucleation life prediction models. The proposed model utilizes a crack nucleation parameter H that is based on the strength of the singular stress field at the contact boundary. An advantage of this singular parameter is that neither a coefficient of friction nor the location of the stick/slip boundary needs to be determined. These two parameters are often difficult to define with certainty a priori. H is also independent of geometry making it well suited for use as a design parameter for designing structural joints and other fitted connections between components.