A Coupled Multibody Finite Element Model for Investigating Effects of Surface Defects on Rolling Contact Fatigue

[+] Author and Article Information
Zamzam Golmohammadi

Ph.D. Graduate Research Assistant, Purdue University, School of Mechanical Engineering, West Lafayette, IN 47907, USA

Farshid Sadeghi

Cummins Distinguished Professor of Mechanical Engineering, Fellow, ASME, STLE, Purdue University, School of Mechanical Engineering, West Lafayette, IN 47907, USA

1Corresponding author.

ASME doi:10.1115/1.4042270 History: Received July 26, 2018; Revised December 03, 2018


A coupled multibody elastic-plastic finite element (FE) model was developed to investigate the effects of surface defects, such as dents on rolling contact fatigue (RCF). The coupled FE model was used to determine the contact pressure acting over the surface defect, internal stresses, damage, etc. In order to determine the shape of a dent and material pile up during the over rolling process, a rigid indenter was pressed against an elastic plastic semi-infinite domain. Continuum damage mechanics (CDM) was used to account for material degradation during RCF. Using CDM, spall initiation and propagation in a line contact was modelled and investigated. A parametric study using the model was performed to examine the effects of dent sharpness, pile up ratio and applied load on the spall formation and fatigue life. The spall patterns were found to be consistent with experimental observations from the open literature. Moreover, the results demonstrated that the dent shape and sharpness had a significant effect on pressure and thus fatigue life. Higher dent sharpness ratios significantly reduced the fatigue life.

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