Cyclic load generally leads to mechanical failure of a material. In cyclic load, the load applied to a specimen varies in time and magnitude. This variation of load and time can be regular or stochastic. The effect of purely stochastic variations cannot be predicted; thus, the analysis of a cyclic load is done by simplifications trying to find a regular pattern in the load/time history. For the degradation behaviour, it makes a difference whether a specimen is subject to a slow variation of the load or to a rapid one. The two load regimes are assigned as low-cycle fatigue and high-cycle fatigue, respectively. In low-cycle fatigue, the time in each cycle allows the material to deform plastically, usually by creep. This means in low-cycle fatigue, the failure is triggered by deformation. High-cycle fatigue on the other hand does not leave enough time for relaxation. Local defects lead to local stress concentration above the yield strength, which causes the defect to grow with each cycle. In other words, high-cycle fatigue is stress driven. Usually, in high-cycle fatigue, the number of cycles to failure is above 105 cycles. In reality, it is quite common that both kinds of fatigue are present, which makes testing for cyclic load quite complex.


Solder Joint Cyclic Load Creep Rate Stress Amplitude Failure Strain 
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© Springer-Verlag London Limited 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.EMPADübendorfSwitzerland

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