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How to do Fatigue Analysis in SolidWorks?

In this article, we will learn how to do fatigue analyses in SolidWorks.

What is Fatigue Analysis?

Fatigue Analysis is the structural analysis done on an object. It is used to check the failure when the object is subject to cyclic loading conditions. In other words, Fatigue occurs when a design is subjected to repeated loading at stress levels that are below the stress of the material.  Fatigue is the damage that is progressive and localized structural damage that occurs when an object is subject to cyclic loading.  The main reason for crack formation or propagation is fatigue failure. When high-stresses are continued for a long time this happens.

Fatigue analysis is performed to check the performance level and ability of the object to resist fatigue failure. There are three well-established methods for calculating fatigue;

  • Stress Life,
  • Strain Life, and
  • Linear Elastic Fracture Mechanics.
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Factors Affecting Fatigue Behavior

The factors which affect the fatigue behaviour are listed below:

  • Type and Nature of Loading.
  • Size of Component
  • Material Properties.
  • Stress or Strain Concentration.
  • Stress or strain Distribution.
  • Strain Rate and Frequency Effects.
  • Strain Rate and Frequency Effects.
  • Surface finish and Directional Properties.
  • Mean stress or Strain.
  • Metallurgical Factors
  • Environmental Effects.

Fatigue analysis in Solidworks

To do the Fatigue Analysis in Solidworks first we have to open the model. Then we have to select the Simulation command from the command manager. If the Simulation Option is not available then go to Option > Add-ins > tick the Simulation option. Then press OK.  The Simulation Command will appear in the Command manager.

The next step is to do the Fatigue analysis. Before doing Fatigue analysis we have to do the Static analysis. As in fatigue analysis, the results are taken from static analysis to the analysis.

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After performing Static analysis click on the New study form command manager. In the property manager select the fatigue analysis. Under fatigue analysis, we have four loading conditions.

Loading conditions

  1. Constant Amplitude events with defined cycles
  2. Variable amplitude history data
  3. Harmonic fatigue of sinusoidal loading
  4. Random vibration fatigue of random vibration

After selecting the loading condition click on OK.

The next step is to apply the number of cycles. Right-click on Loading, and click on the Add events. In Add Events under load enter the value for a number of cycles and click on OK.

After that right click on the results and click on Define/Edit. Select the result type, and how you want to display the result on the whole body or no particular surface.

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At last, we have t0 define the S-n curve. Right-click on the Part name under the property manager and select Apply/Edit fatigue data.

Select the “Derive from material elastic modulus” and under that select any one option and then click on Apply and cancel.

Now we have to run the Analysis. Click on Run this Study from the command manager. The results will be generated. Results will show the Damage and Life of the product/modal.

If at any step you want to change the data or parameter you can do so by clicking on the parameter. And to run the analysis after changes simply click on “Run this study“.