Mechanical Engineering Faculty Research


The fracture behavior of an Al–Mg–Si alloy during cyclic fatigue

Document Type


Publication Date

Summer 7-25-2010


In this paper, is presented and discussed the cyclic fracture behavior of the Al–Mg–Si alloy 6063 that is a candidate used in luminaire light poles. The light poles were subject to fatigue deformation. Test sections were taken from the failed region of the light pole and carefully examined in a scanning electron microscope with the objective of rationalizing the macroscopic fracture mode and intrinsic micromechanisms governing fracture under cyclic loading. The fatigue fracture surface of the alloy revealed distinct regions of early microscopic crack growth, stable crack growth and unstable crack growth and overload. An array of fine striations was found covering the regions of early and stable crack growth. Both macroscopic and fine microscopic cracks were found in the region of unstable crack growth. Very few microscopic voids and shallow dimples were evident on the fatigue fracture surface indicative of the limited ductility of the alloy under cyclic loading conditions.

Publication Title

Materials Science and Engineering: A





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