A strip yield model implementation by the present authors is applied to predict fatigue crack growth observed in structural steel specimens under various constant and variable amplitude loading conditions. Attention is paid to the model calibration using the constraint factors in view of the dependence of both the crack closure mechanism and the material stress-strain response on the load history. Prediction capabilities of the model are considered in the context of the incompatibility between the crack growth resistance for constant and variable amplitude loading.
The paper presents a detailed analysis of the material damaging process due to lowcycle fatigue and subsequent crack growth under thermal shocks and high pressure. Finite Element Method (FEM) model of a high pressure (HP) by-pass valve body and a steam turbine rotor shaft (used in a coal power plant) is presented. The main damaging factor in both cases is fatigue due to cycles of rapid temperature changes. The crack initiation, occurring at a relatively low number of load cycles, depends on alternating or alternating-incremental changes in plastic strains. The crack propagation is determined by the classic fracture mechanics, based on finite element models and the most dangerous case of brittle fracture. This example shows the adaptation of the structure to work in the ultimate conditions of high pressure, thermal shocks and cracking.