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The stress-intensity factor for a semi-elliptical surface crack in T-butt welded joints has been studied by using the weight function approach. The weight functions for cracks in welded joints have been derived by employing the method proposed by Petroski-Achenbach. The calculated stress-intensity factors were compared with those obtained from the variable-amplitude fatigue tests conducted on a series of T-butt welded joints. It has been shown that the weight functions provided sufficiently accurate solutions, in terms of the agreement between the calculated and measured stress-intensity factors and fatigue crack propagation lives. The method proved to be useful in studying weld plate thickness and weld geometry effects on fatigue crack growth in welded joints.
fatigue, welded joints, crack growth, semi-elliptical surface cracks, weight function, stress-intensity factor, variable loading history
Research assistant, University College London, London,
Associate professor, University of Waterloo, Waterloo, Ontario