Development of Predictive Finite Element Models for Complete Contact Fretting Fatigue

  • Mohamad Haidir Maslan

Student thesis: Phd


Nucleation and propagation of cracks under fretting conditions has been a subject of study for many years. An extensive experimental investigation to study these cracks was undertaken by Royal Aerospace Establishment (RAE Farnborough). Of particular interest to RAE was an Aluminium alloy (L65) developed for aerospace applications.Many researchers have studied fretting damage and fatigue cracks. Some have examined damage development due to wear, whilst others have analysed cracks under linear elastic fracture mechanics (LEFM) domain. To date, no attempt has been made to develop an integrated numerical model which incorporates all aspects of fretting fatigue i.e. nucleation, initial (or early) crack growth, and long crack propagation. The development of such a model is the principal aim of this work. It is expected that the integrated approach will provide the basis for a standard fretting fatigue analysis of other materials, components, and structures using the finite element method (FEM).This study uses the earlier experimental results with RAE as the reference for comparison. The approach followed is to implement the various stages of fretting in a commercial finite element code, ABAQUS. Unlike previously used simple FE models, both specimen (Aluminium alloy) and the fretting pad (steel) are modelled to simulate the real contact conditions including slip.Various predictive models for crack nucleation (based on damage) and propagation (based on fracture mechanics) are developed, tested, and implemented in ABAQUS. Results clearly show that these models together provide a good estimation tool for predicting total life in complete contact fretting fatigue. It is envisaged that the integrated model will be easily utilised for other materials, components, and structures subjected to fretting fatigue conditions with minimum experimental testing required.
Date of Award1 Aug 2016
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • The University of Manchester
SupervisorMohammad Sheikh (Supervisor)


  • Fretting Fatigue
  • Finite Element Methods

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