To provide the data necessary to develop a recommended practice for fatigue crack growth rate testing, an extensive interlaboratory (round robin) program was conducted and the variability and bias associated with the current state of the art of fatigue crack growth rate testing was determined. Fatigue crack growth rate data (expressed in terms of linear elastic fracture mechanics parameters) were generated for a 190-ksi (1310-MPa) yield strength 10 Ni-8Co-1Mo steel at 15 different laboratories with several test specimen geometries. The results were evaluated statistically and on the basis of a graphical comparison, and the variability and bias associated with both the experimental and analytical aspects of crack growth rate testing were determined. In general, the overall interlaboratory variability was found to be approximately 3 to 1 (on crack growth rate at a given stress intensity range). The intralaboratory variability was typically 2 to 1. No significant geometry or data processing bias was encountered. The results of this study show that the primary source of variability associated with fatigue crack growth rate testing is the experimental procedure used to obtain the raw test data (crack length versus elapsed cycles).
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