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Fatigue Assessment of Welded Aluminium Structures


Review of Fatigue Assessment Procedures for Welded Aluminium Structures

TWI Industrial Member Report Summary 688/1999

S J Maddox


This report presents a review of methods and corresponding Codes and Standards for the fatigue assessment of welded aluminium alloy structures. It was originally produced to provide a basis for judging the relevance of recent developments, both new fatigue test results and new design specifications, to the assessment of welded ships. However, the report is actually relevant to the consideration of fatigue of any welded aluminium alloy structure.

The report outlines methods for the fatigue assessment of welded aluminium structures from the viewpoint of original design and estimation of the residual life of existing structures. Based partly on a literature search, but also reference to data used in the formation of recent fatigue design Standards, it goes on to review the information available for such assessments in design or guidance specifications in the light of relevant fatigue data. With regard to design specifications, particular attention is focussed on recent fatigue data obtained from structural components representative of actual structures. Recommendations are made for future research.


  • Summarise methods for design and remaining life assessments of fatigue-loaded structures.
  • Compare and contrast the information contained in the various recent fatigue design specifications.
  • Assess proposed design curves in the light of fatigue test results, chiefly obtained in recent research programmes where a major aim was to reproduce the fatigue performance of full-scale welded structures, particularly withrespect to the effect of tensile residual stresses.
  • Identify areas still requiring further research.

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