Title: Analytical and experimental fatigue life assessment of automotive tensioner

Authors: Maryam Talimi; Jean W. Zu

Addresses: Mechanical and Industrial Engineering Department, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario M5S 3G8, Canada ' Mechanical and Industrial Engineering Department, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario M5S 3G8, Canada

Abstract: Front end accessory drive (FEAD) systems are subjected to a significant range of dynamic loads due to engine pulsations. FEAD components subjected to excessive dynamic loads, such as tensioners, are vulnerable to premature failure due to fatigue. It is challenging to analytically investigate the fatigue life for powertrain components given the parameters involved. In this paper, the fatigue life assessment of a tensioner is studied through three main steps, namely stress analysis, fatigue properties estimation, and fatigue life prediction. A series of finite element (FE) analyses are carried out to investigate stress distribution in the tensioner spindle and pinpoint the critical areas. In addition, the fatigue properties of the tensioner are estimated using the experimental data. Finally, tensioner fatigue life is predicted through strain-life approach. This paper presents an in-depth quantitative modelling approach to estimate the fatigue life of the automotive tensioner. The developed modelling approach is applicable for evaluating any cases involving powertrain mechanical components.

Keywords: FEAD; front end accessory drive systems; vehicle tensioners; fatigue life assessment; materials properties; stress analysis; FEA; finite element analysis; Neuber method; powertrain components; dynamic loads; tensioner spindle; modelling.

DOI: 10.1504/IJVP.2016.075336

International Journal of Vehicle Performance, 2016 Vol.2 No.2, pp.103 - 118

Received: 28 Mar 2015
Accepted: 11 Oct 2015

Published online: 14 Mar 2016 *

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