Fatigue crack growth threshold behavior of Type 316 stainless steel was studied in air at 24°C to evaluate the effects of load-shedding rate and specimen geometry on ultra-low crack growth rates. Load-shedding rates greater than the maximum rate recommended in the proposed ASTM test procedure were found to have no substantial effect on the threshold behavior. At very low ΔK levels, crack growth rates were apparently dependent on environmental effects and the degree of plastic constraint.
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