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The effects of panel width and crack length on fracture toughness and the fatigue crack propagation rate of Alclad 2024-T3 and X7475 were investigated in sheet specimens ranging from 30 to 120 in. wide. The unstiffened, wide panels containing a through-the-thickness central crack were tested under uniaxial loadings to generate fatigue crack growth, stable crack growth, and residual strength data. In addition, 48-in. wide 7075-T6 and 7079-T6 aluminum alloy panels were tested at −65° F to determine low-temperature effects. The analysis was conducted to define the parameters contributing to the apparent panel size effects and to outline the procedures to obtain valid data applicable to full-scale structural design. Excellent correlation was found in the stable crack growth resistance curve (
fracture properties, mechanical properties, crack propagation, cracking (fracturing), fatigue tests, panels, cyclic loads, stress analysis, aluminum alloys, plane stress
Wang, D. Y.
Senior engineer, McDonnell Douglas Corp., Long Beach, Calif.