Fracture of the Bottom Platen of an 800 Ton Hydraulic Press
The side supporting flange of the bottom platen of an 800 ton hydraulic press fractured after 9 x 10's cycles under a maximum load of 530 tons. The platen material specified in the design was cast steel 52. Metallographic examination of the fracture surface indicated that the platen had failed in fatigue as a result of a high stress concentration in a sharp 0.6 mm (0.02 in.) radius fillet. Stress analysis and fracture mechanics predictions revealed that there was also danger of fatigue failure for platens with the design radius of 10 mm (0. 4 in.) if the press operates at 800 tons. It was recommended that the remaining life of similar presses be assessed periodically controlling the cracks, their dimensions, and their propagation rates. An increase in the radius of the fillet was also recommended.