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The problem of fatigue of welded steel connections in sea water is reviewed, and it is demonstrated that this failure mode is most troublesome in deep water or rough sea locations where 107 to 108 relatively low-stress range load excursions must be anticipated during a typical design life. Mechanical, material, and environmental variables which influence this fatigue are discussed; and attention is focused upon the effects of cathodic protection, where existing data appear contradictory. The appropriateness of a design procedure which integrates S-N and (da/dN)-ΔK data is discussed, and examples of its applicability to welded specimens and connections in sea water are presented.
fatigue, sea water, offshore structures, cathodic protection, welded steel, fracture mechanics
Professor and Director of the Center for Marine Materials, Florida Atlantic University, Boca Raton, Fla.