For the evaluation of the local elastoplastic strains and stresses at the notch root suitable approximation formulas of sufficient accuracy are often used. In the present study the “equivalent strain energy density” concept for elastic-plastic notch strain-stress analysis has been developed. It was found that the evaluation of the strain energy density in the notch tip plastic zones does not require any input data other than the material stress-strain relation and the elastic stress concentration factor. The concept was verified on the basis of the results obtained from plane strain elastic-plastic finite element analysis using the material model after Mro´z. Comparison of the two sets of results revealed satisfactory accuracy of the equivalent strain energy concept. It was also shown that all stress and strain components in the notch tip can be calculated by complementing the method with Hencky’s equations. Neuber-based calculations were also included in the study. It was found that the energy concept was superior to Neuber’s rule, especially in the presence of high inelastic strains in the notch tip.

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