A constitutive modeling approach for shape memory alloy (SMA) wire by taking into account the microstructural phase inhomogeneity and the associated solid–solid phase transformation kinetics is reported in this paper. The approach is applicable to general thermomechanical loading. Characterization of various scales in the non-local rate sensitive kinetics is the main focus of this paper. Design of SMA materials and actuators not only involve an optimal exploitation of the hysteresis loops during loading–unloading, but also accounts for fatigue and training cycle identifications. For a successful design of SMA integrated actuator systems, it is essential to include the microstructural inhomogeneity effects and the loading rate dependence of the martensitic evolution, since these factors play predominant role in fatigue. In the proposed formulation, the evolution of new phase is assumed according to Weibull distribution. Fourier transformation and finite difference methods are applied to arrive at the analytical form of two important scaling parameters. The ratio of these scaling parameters is of the order of 106 for stress-free temperature-induced transformation and 104 for stress-induced transformation. These scaling parameters are used in order to study the effect of microstructural variation on the thermo-mechanical force and interface driving force. It is observed that the interface driving force is significant during the evolution. Increase in the slopes of the transformation start and end regions in the stress–strain hysteresis loop is observed for mechanical loading with higher rates.
Shape memory alloy Kinetics Free energy Microstructure Inhomogeneity