Ultimate Tensile Stress (UTS)

Last updated: March 19, 2019

What Does Ultimate Tensile Stress (UTS) Mean?

Ultimate tensile stress (UTS) refers to the maximum stress that a given material can withstand under an applied force. Metals that experience stress beyond the UTS value are more likely to exhibit traits of stress corrosion cracking.


Corrosionpedia Explains Ultimate Tensile Stress (UTS)

It is important to regulate the rate of UTS in metals that are deemed suitable for a given application. This permits corrosion engineers to better determine the rate of stress corrosion cracking (SCC) present, which is important because there is a direct correlation between SCC and the lifespan of a metal.

SCC refers to the progressive fracturing that occurs in metals as a result of the combined effect of stress and an application environment that is conducive to corrosion. Examples of such environments are highly acidic, with high moisture rates or a high concentration of dust and other particles.

To calculate the ultimate tensile stress (UTS) of a material:

  1. Divide the force stress amount placed on the material
  2. Express the obtained figure in terms of pounds or tons per square inch of material by the cross-sectional area of the tested material

The ultimate tensile strength formula is:

S = F / A


S = the breaking strength (stress)

F = the force that caused the failure

A = the least cross sectional area of the material

The ultimate tensile stress (UTS) is typically found in a more precise manner by performing a tensile test and recording the engineering stress versus strain curve.


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