A Fatigue Prediction Method for Spot Welded Joints
Generally linear finite element analysis (FEA) is used to predict fatigue life of spot welded joints in a vehicle body structure. Therefore, the effect of plastic deformation at the vicinity of the spot welded joints is not included on fatigue prediction. This study introduces a simple technique to include the plastic deformation effect without performing elastic-plastic finite element analysis. The S-N curve obtained from fatigue test results is modified to consider this effect. Tensile strength test results of spot welded joint specimens were utilized to find the load range for FEA equivalent to the applied load range for fatigue tests. To demonstrate the proposed approach, fatigue test results of advanced high strength steels (AHSS) for lap-shear and coach peel specimens were used. Both the specimen types were tested at various constant amplitudes with the load ratios of R=0.1 and 0.3.