An analytic study of planar beams and arches subjected to significant thermal cycling from ambient temperatures up to 800°C is presented. The study employs a recently unified nonlinear hereditary type of viscoelastoplastic constitutive law to characterize the time- and temperature-dependent properties of Hastelloy X, a typical aerospace alloy. The results demonstrate a strong interaction between the backstress variable of the constitutive law and the time-dependent stress distribution produced by the deformation. This interaction tends to control, in a highly nonlinear manner, the creep ratchetting response of the beam or arch. Moreover, temperature gradients in the thickness direction tend to exert an important influence during thermal cycling.

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