Comparative study on fracture characteristics of carbon and stainless steel bolt material

Orhan Yapici, Marios Theofanous, Huanxin Yuan, Sheida Afshan, Konstantinos Skalomenos

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


Bolt fracture often limits the ultimate strength and deformation capacity of bolted connections and leads to overall joint failure. Therefore, the prediction of structural collapse under extreme loads necessitates the incorporation of a reliable fracture model that reflects the observed structural response of bolts. This paper reports a comprehensive experimental and numerical study into the structural behaviour, ductility and fracture characteristics of Grade A4–80 austenitic stainless steel bolts and carbon steel 8.8 bolts in tension, which are commonly used as fasteners in bolted connections. Tensile tests were performed on smooth material coupons machined from both bolt grades to obtain the material response. Thereafter, tensile tests were performed on notched specimens from both grades, allowing the fracture characteristics to be studied over a range of stress triaxialities and the development of an equation relating the plastic strain at fracture to the stress triaxiality. 2D axisymmetric and 3D advanced finite element models were calibrated against the experimental results and damage propagation parameters. The developed numerical models are shown to perfectly replicate the observed experimental behaviour of the tested bolt materials under predominantly tensile loading, including fracture. Both experimental and numerical results confirm the superior ductility of A4–80 bolts over their 8.8 counterparts.
Original languageEnglish
Article number108102
JournalJournal of Constructional Steel Research
Early online date8 Jul 2023
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2023


  • Bolts
  • Ductility
  • Fracture
  • High strength steel
  • Numerical modelling
  • Stainless steel
  • Stress triaxiality

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Building and Construction
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Metals and Alloys


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