Stress linearization is a technique used to decompose a through-thickness elastic stress field into equivalent membrane, bending, and peak stresses for comparison with appropriate allowable limits.
- Membrane stress is the average stress through the thickness (P/A)
- Bending stress is the linearly varying stress through the thickness (Mc/I)
- Peak stress is the total stress minus the membrane plus bending stress
Stress linearization was developed in the pressure vessel industry by Kroenke and Gordon in the 1970s. It was first implemented in Section III (nuclear vessels) and Section VIII, Division 2 (commercial vessels) of the ASME Boiler and Pressure Code. Although widely used in industry thereafter, specific guidance was not included in ASME Boiler & Pressure Vessel Code (BPVC) Section VIII Div. 2 until 2007.
While ANSYS Workbench can be used to validate designs, care must be taken in how the stresses and their locations are handled.