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Repeatability of the Contour Method for Residual Stress Measurement

  • Author(s): Hill, MR;
  • Olson, MD
  • et al.

This paper describes the results of a residual stress measurement repeatability study using the contour method. The test specimen is an aluminum bar (cut from plate), with cross sectional dimensions of 50.8 mm × 76.2 mm (2 in × 3 in) with a length of 609.6 mm (24 in). There are two bars, one bar with high residual stresses and one bar with low residual stresses. The high residual stress configuration (±150 MPa) is in a quenched and over-aged condition (Al 7050-T74) and the low residual stress configuration (±20 MPa) is stress relieved by stretching (Al 7050-T7451). Five contour measurements were performed on each aluminum bar at the mid-length of successively smaller pieces. Typical contour method procedures are employed with careful clamping of the specimen, wire electric discharge machining (EDM) for the cut, laser surface profiling of the cut faces, surface profile fitting, and linear elastic stress analysis. The measurement results provide repeatability data for the contour method, and the difference in repeatability when measuring high or low magnitude stresses. The results show similar repeatability standard deviation for both samples, being less than 10 MPa over most of the cross section and somewhat larger, around 20 MPa, near the cross section edges. A comparison with published repeatability data for other residual stress measurement techniques (x-ray diffraction, incremental hole drilling, and slitting) shows that the contour method has a level of repeatability that is similar to, or better than, other techniques. © 2014 Society for Experimental Mechanics.

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