Contributed by the Applied Mechanics Division of THE AMERICAN SOCIETY OF MECHANICAL ENGINEERS for publication in the ASME JOURNAL OF APPLIED MECHANICS. Manuscript received by the ASME Applied Mechanics Division, Sept. 16, 2002, final revision, Mar. 31, 2003. Associate Editor: J. R. Barber.

A number of studies on the thermal shock behavior of finite-thickness slabs with the temperature varying through the thickness have been conducted over the years by researchers such as Albrecht 1, Chen 2, and Nied 3, to name just a few. However, a review of these solutions reveals that the transient thermal loading is usually restricted to either a step or linear function of time whereas many thermal shocks are asymptotic in form (Vedula et al. 4 and Tu and Segall 5). Consequently, the actual time and magnitude of the maximum stress may vary significantly from an...

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