This chapter proposes an evaluation and extension of the UniGrow model to predict the fatigue crack propagation rate, based on a local strain-based approach to fatigue. The UniGrow model, classified as a residual stress‐based crack propagation model, is here applied to derive probabilistic fatigue crack propagation fields (p-da/dN-ΔK-R fields) for P355NL1 pressure vessel steel, covering distinct stress R-ratios. The results are compared with available experimental data. The required strain-life data are experimentally achieved and evaluated. The material representative element size, ρ*, a key parameter in the UniGrow model, is assessed by means of a trial-and-error procedure of inverse analysis. Moreover, residual stresses are computed for varying crack lengths and minimum-to-maximum stress ratios. Elastoplastic stress fields around the crack apex are evaluated with analytical relations and compared with elastoplastic finite-element (FE) computations. The deterministic strain-life relations proposed in the original UniGrow model are replaced by the probabilistic strain‐life fields (p-ε-N) proposed by Castillo and Canteli. This probabilistic model is also extended by considering a damage parameter to allow for mean stress effects. In particular, a probabilistic Smith-Watson-Topper field (p-SWT-N), alternatively to the conventional p-ε-N field, is proposed and applied to derive the probabilistic fatigue crack propagation fields.
Part of the book: Fracture Mechanics