Fatigue lifetime assessment is essential in the design of structures. Under-estimated predictions may result in unnecessary in service inspections. Conversely, over-estimated predictions may have serious consequences on the integrity of structures.

In some nuclear power plant components, the fatigue loading may be equi-biaxial because of thermal fatigue. So the potential impact of multiaxial loading on the fatigue life of components is a major concern. Meanwhile, few experimental data are available on austenitic stainless steels. It is essential to improve the fatigue assessment methodologies to take into account the potential equi-biaxial fatigue damage. Hence this requires obtaining experimental data on the considered material with a strain tensor in equi-biaxial tension.

The aim of this paper is to present the experimental results obtained with a device “FABIME2” developed in the LISN in collaboration with EDF and AREVA. The specimen geometry is optimized by FEM (Cast3M) simulation in order to obtain a stress concentration localized in the central region during the test. This device allows accurate quantification of the effects of both equi-biaxial strain state as well as structure (such as mean stress) on the fatigue life.

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