Fatigue Strength of Weathering Steel
Fatigue behaviour of Atmofix 52 steel (comparable to COR-TENâ steel) exposed to atmospheric corrosion for 20 years was investigated. S-N curves for load symmetrical cycling and cycling with stress ratio R = 0 were determined on specimens detracted from a failed transmission tower. The data were compared with those on material without a rust layer. The fracture surfaces and, in particular, the sites of fatigue crack initiation were analyzed.Substantial decrease of fatigue life and fatigue limit due to corrosion exposition was found. Based on observation of surface layer with corrosion products and on fractographic analysis of failed specimens conclusions on fatigue damage mechanism were drawn. No grain boundary corrosion, which can be responsible for fatigue crack initiation, was observed. Initiation of fatigue cracks was related to surface roughness and took place exclusively on corrosion dimples.
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