Predictive Fatigue Model for Serpentine Belt Drive Systems


The use of a predictive fatigue crack growth model to monitor progressive deterioration of initially small rib-tip flaws in automotive serpentine belts is presented in this paper. Model is based on computational fracture mechanics and fatigue coupon test data. A global-local finite element analysis procedure is used to compute the J-integral for a through-the-thickness crack in the rib tip. The three-dimensional global model is created with relatively coarse mesh using first order continuum elements in ABAQUS. The local model rib crack is constructed with significantly finer mesh utilizing second order continuum elements. Boundary conditions for the local model are driven by global displacements. Maximum and minimum J-integrals are calculated at two extreme configurations for a single belt running cycle. The range of the J-integral is input into the curve fitted power law to derive the fatigue crack growth rate and hence the fatigue life for the belt. Fatigue life is significantly increased with decreasing crack size.

Meeting Name

SAE 2006 World Congress & Exhibition


Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering

Keywords and Phrases

Finite Element Analysis; Spark Ignition Gasoline Engines

Document Type

Article - Conference proceedings

Document Version


File Type





© 2006 Society of Automotive Engineers, All rights reserved.

Publication Date

01 Jan 2006