Validation of Mechanical Strain Relaxation Methods for Stress Measurement

D. M. Goudar, D. J. Smith*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


Most validation studies of mechanical strain relaxation (MSR) methods for residual stress measurement rely on using the saw-tooth residual stress distribution resulting from four point bending and elastic-plastic deformation. Validation studies using simple applied stress profiles in rectangular steel beams are used in this work, together with beams subjected to elastic-plastic bending. Two MSR methods are explored, deep-hole drilling (DHD) and incremental centre hole drilling (ICHD). As well as a series of experiments, finite element analyses are conducted to determine the accuracy in the inversion of measured deformation to reconstruct stress. The validation tests demonstrated that apart from the applied stresses, the initial residual stresses also contribute even when samples are expected to be stress free. The uncertainty in measurement for the two MSR methods is determined, with the uncertainty in near surface measurement found to be significantly larger than uncertainty for interior measurement. In simple loading cases (and simple stress profiles) the uncertainty in measurement and hence the degree of validation is shown to be within about +/- 50 MPa for steel for "known" stress up to about 140 MPa. However, if the residual stress distribution is more complex there arises increased uncertainty in the predicted residual stress and lack of confidence between measurements methods.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)267-286
Number of pages20
JournalExperimental Mechanics
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2013


  • Measurement
  • Residual stress
  • WELD
  • Mechanical strain relaxation

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