Validation Study on the Statistical Size Effect in Cast Aluminium

Matthias Oberreiter*, Sebastian Pomberger, Martin Leitner, Michael Stoschka

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Imperfections due to the manufacturing process can significantly affect the local fatigue strength of the bulk material in cast aluminium alloys. Most components possess several sections of varying microstructure, whereat each of them may inherit a different highly-stressed volume (HSV). Even in cases of homogeneous local casting conditions, the statistical distribution parameters of failure causing defect sizes change significantly, since for a larger highly-stressed volume the probability for enlarged critical defects gets elevated. This impact of differing highly-stressed volume is commonly referred as statistical size effect. In this paper, the study of the statistical size effect on cast material considering partial highly-stressed volumes is based on the comparison of a reference volume V0 and an arbitrary enlarged, but disconnected volume Vα utilizing another specimen geometry. Thus, the behaviour of disconnected highly-stressed volumes within one component in terms of fatigue strength and resulting defect distributions can be assessed. The experimental results show that doubling of the highly-stressed volume leads to a decrease in fatigue strength of 5% and shifts the defect distribution towards larger defect sizes. The highly-stressed volume is numerically determined whereat the applicable element size is gained by a parametric study. Finally, the validation with a prior developed fatigue strength assessment model by R. Aigner et al. leads to a conservative fatigue design with a deviation of only about 0.3% for cast aluminium alloy.
Original languageEnglish
Article number710
Number of pages22
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2020
Externally publishedYes


  • Aluminium casting
  • Extreme value statistics
  • Fatigue assessment
  • Highly-stressed volume
  • Shrinkage porosity
  • Statistical size effect

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Materials Science(all)

Cite this