Abstract

The natural variation of strength properties within brittle materials leads to the phenomenon of size effect which causes the expected strength of a material to decrease as the stressed volume increases. An important implication of size effect is that size adjustment parameters must be incorporated into multi-axial constitutive and failure models used in numerical simulations such as those made using the finite element method. These size adjustments are based on the sizes of the individual elements, rather than the size of the structural member. This experimental study seeks to determine whether such a size effect is present in the orthotropic principal material directions of parallel strand lumber (PSL) and laminated veneer lumber (LVL), and, if the effect is present, to quantify it. Tensile tests were performed on specimens of different test section lengths oriented in the longitudinal, transverse, and through-thickness (PSL only) directions and size effect adjustment parameters were estimated. Statistical results indicate the existence of size effect in LVL and PSL for the longitudinal and transverse directions.

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