A simple methodology is suggested to analyze the crack growth of a body up to maximum load, by integrating the step-like increments of applied load and crack extension. The crack-growth criterion is the critical rate of crack-tip opening displacement (CTOD) increase versus effective crack extension of plastic-zone-size adjustment. Formulations of linear elastic fracture mechanics and limit-load expressions are used in the calculation. The analysis also presents a K-resistance (KR) curve equation, which is complete with constants of fracture initiation toughness and crack-growth resistance. The proposed method is applied to 2024-T351 aluminum alloy specimens in plane stress, for which experimental data are available. The calculated maximum loads are in reasonable agreement with the failure loads.
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