1995-09-01

A Novel Method for Determining the Stress-Life Exponent in Some Fatigue Experiments 952122

Reliability research in hybrid ceramic bearings involves life testing of hybrid bearings and ceramic specimens. New materials for bearings like advanced ceramics have emerged for evaluation in recent years. In fatigue testing to determine the stress-life relationship, the number of sample size in life testing can be limited by consideration of cost and testing time. In the testing of ceramics, some researchers have relied on the use of a stepwise multiple loading approach to increase the failure data points. In this paper, a maximum likelihood method is applied to test data with multiple loads to estimate the stress-life exponent. This method treats the data at different loads or steps at once. Test data from three fatigue experiments using silicon nitride materials have been analyzed to obtain the stress-life exponents. Also, Weibull plots of the ‘equivalent lives' have been presented for all test specimens tested at different loads and load steps.

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