Fracture toughness and Fatigue Crack Growth (FCG) experimental data represent the basis for accurate designs and integrity assessments of components containing crack-like defects. Considering ductile and high toughness structural materials, crack growing curves (e.g. J-R curves) and FCG data (in terms of da/dN vs. ΔK or ΔJ) assumed paramount relevance since characterize, respectively, ductile fracture and cyclic crack growth conditions. In common, these two types of mechanical properties severely depend on real-time and precise crack size estimations during laboratory testing. Optical, electric potential drop or (most commonly) elastic unloading compliance (C) techniques can be employed. In the latter method, crack size estimation derives from C using a dimensionless parameter (μ) which incorporates specimen’s thickness (B), elasticity (E) and compliance itself. Plane stress and plane strain solutions for μ are available in several standards regarding C(T), SE(B) and M(T) specimens, among others. Current challenges include: i) real specimens are in neither plane stress nor plane strain - modulus vary between E (plane stress) and E/(1-ν2) (plane strain), revealing effects of thickness and 3-D configurations; ii) furthermore, side-grooves affect specimen’s stiffness, leading to an “effective thickness”. Previous results from current authors revealed deviations larger than 10% in crack size estimations following existing practices, especially for shallow cracks and side-grooved samples. In addition, compliance solutions for the emerging clamped SE(T) specimens are not yet standardized. As a step in this direction, this work investigates 3-D, thickness and side-groove effects on compliance solutions applicable to C(T), SE(B) and clamped SE(T) specimens. Refined 3-D elastic FE-models provide Load-CMOD evolutions. The analysis matrix includes crack depths between a/W=0.1 and a/W=0.7 and varying thicknesses (W/B = 4, W/B = 2 and W/B = 1). Side-grooves of 5%, 10% and 20% are also considered. The results include compliance solutions incorporating all aforementioned effects to provide accurate crack size estimation during laboratory fracture and FCG testing. All proposals revealed reduced deviations if compared to existing solutions.

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