Metallurgical Failure Analysis of Titanium Wing Attachment Bolts
Two titanium alloy wing attachment bolts from a commercial jetliner failed during the course of a routine service operation. Failure of the bolts occurred during the re-torque process as the wing was being reattached. Metallurgical failure analysis indicated that the fracture mechanism was ductile overload and that the mechanical properties of the bolts were consistent with exemplar bolts that had been supplied. After eliminating other sources of excessive load application, the most probable cause of failure was ascribed to variances between the frictional characteristics of the bolt at the time of re-torque and at the time of initial torque application several years earlier.
M.E. Stevenson, J.L. McDougall, K.G. Cline, Metallurgical Failure Analysis of Titanium Wing Attachment Bolts, ASM Failure Analysis Case Histories: Failure Modes and Mechanisms, ASM International, 2019, https://doi.org/10.31399/asm.fach.modes.c9001649
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