Project manager

Dr Conor McCaughey
Research Project: Design Life Measurement and Prediction for Nitrided Compression Springs

Published: 12 August 2021

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Who can take part: Members

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Benefits: Access to project reports

Over the last couple of years, the Institute of Spring Technology has been increasing focus on research and development, a cornerstone of the company in its long history. This paper will primarily look at our work to predict the life of nitrided compression springs.

Nitriding is designed to increase the surface hardness of metallic components by forced diffusion of nitrogen, a significant benefit to components where the maximum stress is at the surface. This work looked at the improvement that nitriding two Suzuki Garphyttan alloys could gain: OTEVA 91 and OTEVA 101, using a commercially available nitriding process.

The work not only looks at examining the improvement of a single compression spring design but, using experimental fatigue data, model and predict the life of any compression spring design made using these materials to a high degree of certainty. Results show nitrided + shot peened springs have up to twice the fatigue life for certain deflections compared to shot peened springs. This will give manufacturers and end-users data they can rely on to produce optimised spring designs without the need for extensive testing. 

For more information about this project, please get in touch with Conor at

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Written by Dr Conor McCaughey

Dr Conor McCaughey has been working for The Institute of Spring Technology since 2017. He has a Masters in Aerospace Engineering and post-graduate studies in the Advanced Metallic Systems CDT. Conor is our Research Metallurgist with an exceptional knowledge of materials and is technical liaison to all of our Members.

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