SYMPOSIA PAPER Published: 01 January 1954

The Problem of Thermal Stress Fatigue in Austenitic Steels at Elevated Temperatures


The localization of cyclic strain produced as a consequence of thermal fluctuations is principally responsible for thermal stress fatigue failures in structures fabricated from austenitic stainless steel. Mechanisms for strain localization are discussed, and experiments are reported for specimens designed to exhibit such localizations. Relationships between plastic strain change and cycles to failure are developed from tests performed on uniform specimens subjected to both cyclic strain at constant temperature and constrained cyclic thermal strain. These relationships are used to predict failure for the localized strain experiments. A difference in stress change and in cycles to failure between strain and constrained thermal cycling is observed.

Author Information

Coffin, L., F.
U. S. Atomic Energy Commission by the General Electric Co., Schenectady, N. Y.
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Developed by Committee: E01
Pages: 31–52
DOI: 10.1520/STP48000S
ISBN-EB: 978-0-8031-8372-8
ISBN-13: 978-0-8031-6861-9