The fast fracture strength distribution of uniaxially ground, alpha silicon carbide was investigated as a function of grinding angle relative to the principal stress direction in flexure. Both as-ground and ground/annealed surfaces were investigated. The resulting flexural strength distributions were used to verify reliability models and predict the strength distribution of larger plate specimens tested in biaxial flexure. Complete fractography was done on the specimens. Failures occurred from agglomerates, machining cracks, or hybrid flaws that consisted of a machining crack located at a processing agglomerate. Annealing eliminated failures due to machining damage. Reliability analyses were performed using two and three-parameter Weibull and Batdorf methodologies. The Weibull size effect was demonstrated for machining flaws. Mixed mode reliability models reasonably predicted the strength distributions of uniaxial flexure and biaxial plate specimens.

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