It now seems to be understood that self stresses (residual stresses) increase or decrease fatigue life mainly by preventing, delaying, or accelerating the growth of cracks. The action of self stresses is currently being related to fracture mechanics. The fact that the effect of self stresses is far stronger at notches than in smooth push pull specimens, or in other smooth specimens, is gaining more and more recognition. In current publications this fact is modeled by considering not only the local surface stresses, but also the distribution of load stresses and self stresses below the surface of the specimen or part.
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