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Graduate courses

Departments' graduate courses for PhD-students.


Syllabus for

Academic year
TME260 - Fatigue and fracture
Syllabus adopted 2014-02-17 by Head of Programme (or corresponding)
Owner: MPAME
7,5 Credits
Grading: TH - Five, Four, Three, Not passed
Education cycle: Second-cycle
Major subject: Mechanical Engineering, Shipping and Marine Technology
Department: 42 - APPLIED MECHANICS

Teaching language: English
Open for exchange students
Block schedule: C

Course module   Credit distribution   Examination dates
Sp1 Sp2 Sp3 Sp4 Summer course No Sp
0112 Examination 7,5 c Grading: TH   7,5 c   28 Oct 2014 am M,  05 Jan 2015 am M,  Contact examiner

In programs

MPAME APPLIED MECHANICS, MSC PROGR, Year 1 (compulsory elective)


Professor  Lennart Josefson


MMA115   Fatigue design

Course evaluation:

  Go to Course Homepage


In order to be eligible for a second cycle course the applicant needs to fulfil the general and specific entry requirements of the programme that owns the course. (If the second cycle course is owned by a first cycle programme, second cycle entry requirements apply.)
Exemption from the eligibility requirement: Applicants enrolled in a programme at Chalmers where the course is included in the study programme are exempted from fulfilling these requirements.

Course specific prerequisites

The student should have a basic knowledge in strength of materials and finite element methods, equivalent to the basic courses given in the Batchelor programme in Mechanical Engineering (maskinteknikprogrammet). Recommended course: Mechanics of solids, TME235


The aim of the course is that the student should understand the mechanisms behind fracture and fatigue failures and be able to design and analyse structures and components subjected to various types of fatigue loading. Further, the student should be able to choose suitable fatigue design criteria depending on type of loading and application.

Learning outcomes (after completion of the course the student should be able to)

  • master concepts of fracture mechanics, and fracture
  • understand and describe the physical background to initiation and growth of fatigue cracks in polycrystalline metals.
  • identify and quantify fatigue loading situations for engineering components and structures
  • choose and apply different (stress based, strain based and fracture mechanics based) approaches to fatigue design of components and structures made of metallic materials, and also understand the limitations of these approaches
  • understand how approaches for fatigue design can be employed also for other materials such as composite materials and which limitations such adaptions have
  • estimate material parameters needed for a fatigue life prediction
  • master design against fatigue under multi-axial loading situations
  • formulate algorithms needed to analyse fatigue life under irregular load histories
  • carry out fatigue design according to European design codes, in particular for assemblies, and in particular welded joints
  • understand how statistical uncertainties influences the reliability of predictions


The course contains the following parts:
  • Physical background to fatigue crack initiation and growth
  • Fatigue loads, signal analysis, variable amplitude loads
  • Fatigue testing and evaluation of material parameters for fatigue design
  • Stress based approach to fatigue design
  • Fracture mechanics theory
  • Fracture mechanics based fatigue crack growth analysis
  • Plastic deformation
  • Strain based approach to fatigue design
  • Multi-axial fatigue analysis
    - Introduction to the fatigue of composites
  • Design codes for fatigue design of welds, different approaches including FE-based evaluation of stress measures for fatigue
  • Introduction to statistical scatter in fatigue predictions
  • Industrial visits to see operational fatigue testing of components and built-up structures


The course includes 14 lectures a 4 hours, four design assignments (covering fracture and fatigue design criteria) and industrial visits to see operational fatigue testing of components and built-up structures.


Norman E. Dowling, Mechanical Behavior of Materials, Engineering Methods
for Deformation, Fracture and Fatigue, Fourth Edition, Pearson Prentice
Hall, 2013, ISBN 0-273-76455-1

Anders Ekberg, Multiaxial fatigue, Department of Applied Mechanics,
Chalmers University of Technology, Göteborg, Sweden.

Additional material on fracture mechanics
and the fatigue design of welded components is handed out


The examination is based on a written exam, grades TH. Further, approved assignments are a requirement to pass the course.

Page manager Published: Thu 04 Feb 2021.