Fatigue failure analysis of fillet welded joints used in offshore structures
Paper i proceeding, 2014
This paper presents a comparison made of different fatigue calculation methods used in the maritime industry today, with the aim of having a higher control of a fatigue failure site. To provide an overview of the different fatigue calculation methods, a comparison study was performed, as well as a local weld parameter study for two typical fillet welded joints. The two methods used for this study were the structural hot spot and effective notch stress method. Two fillet welded joints were provided by Aker Solutions MMO AS, Bergen, Norway. The first joint is a rectangular hollow section from a davit, built as a truss. The second model is a part of a K-joint from a semi-submersible (Aker H3 design). Both joints were analysed using fine 3D finite element models.
The two different fatigue life calculation methods yielded different fatigue lives for the weld toe, with inconclusive results regarding their conservatism which is discussed in the paper. An increased weld toe radius gave a higher fatigue life for the weld toe, while the larger weld size increased the fatigue life in the weld root. Any weld size effect regarding fatigue life in the weld toe could not be established. Based on the effective notch stress method calculations, there was an indication of weld root failure for the K-joint of the drilling unit. Fatigue life improvement methods only increasing weld toe fatigue life are not recommended based on these results.
Effective notch stress method
structural hot spot stress method