Fatigue Crack Initiation in the Iron-Based Shape Memory Alloy FeMnAlNiTi

R. Sidharth, W. Abuzaid, M. Vollmer, T. Niendorf, H. Sehitoglu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The newly developed FeMnAlNiTi shape memory alloy (SMA) holds significant promise due to its desirable properties including ease of processing, room temperature superelasticity, a wide superelastic window of operation, and high transformation stress levels. In this study, we report single crystals with tensile axis near 〈 123 〉 exhibiting transformation strains of 9% with a high transformation stress of 700 MPa. The functional performance revealed excellent recovery of 98% of the applied strain in an incremental strain test for each of the 40 applied cycles. Concomitantly, the total residual strain increased after each cycle. Accumulation of residual martensite is observed possibly due to pinning of austenite/martensite (A/M) interface. Subsequently, under structural fatigue loading with a constant strain amplitude of 1%, the recoverable strains saturate around 1.15% in local residual martensite domains. Intermittent enhancement of recoverable strains is observed due to transformation triggered in previously untransformed domains. Eventually, fatigue failure occurred after 2046 cycles and the dominant mechanism for failure was microcrack initiation and coalescence along the A/M interface. Thus, it is concluded that interfacial dislocations, which play a crucial role in the superelastic (SE) functionality, invariably affect the structural fatigue performance by acting as the weakest link in the microstructure.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)323-331
Number of pages9
JournalShape Memory and Superelasticity
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 1 2020


  • Crack initiation
  • Functional fatigue
  • Residual martensite
  • Shape memory alloys
  • Structural fatigue
  • Superelasticity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Mechanics of Materials
  • General Materials Science


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