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Tensile Strain

Last updated: November 7, 2019

What Does Tensile Strain Mean?

Tensile strain is defined as the deformation or elongation of a solid body due to the application of a tensile force or stress. In other words, tensile strain is produced when a body increases in length as applied forces try to "stretch" it. Tensile strain can be expressed mathematically by the formula:

ε = ΔL / L


ε = Tensile strain

ΔL = Change in length

L = Original length


Corrosionpedia Explains Tensile Strain

Unlike its closely related counterpart, tensile stress, tensile strain is not expressed as a unit of measurement. Instead, it represents a ratio that displays the relationship between an object's change in length to its original length.

For example, if an object increases in length by 10% due to the application of a tensile or pulling force, it will exhibit a tensile strain value of +0.1 (the positive sign denotes that the strain is tensile as opposed to compressive).

Tensile strain values are typically determined using tensile strength tests.


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