Current defect assessment procedures of large engineering structures, including pipeline systems and their welded components such as field girth welds, employ crack growth resistance curves in terms of J-resistance or CTOD-resistance curves. Standardized techniques for crack growth resistance testing of structural steels are based upon laboratory measurements of load-displacement records and adopt two related estimation formulas for fracture toughness values: 1) estimating J from plastic work based on crack mouth opening displacement (CMOD), and 2) determining the CTOD value from first evaluating the plastic component of J using the plastic work defined by the area under the load vs. CMOD curve and then converting it into the corresponding value of plastic CTOD. This work addresses an investigation on the relationship between J and CTOD for three-point SE(B) and clamped SE(T) fracture specimens based upon extensive numerical analyses conducted for crack configurations with varying crack sizes. These analyses include stationary and crack growth plane-strain results to determine J and CTOD for the cracked configurations based on load-displacement records. The numerical computations show strong similarities between the J-CTOD relationship for stationary and growth analysis with important implications for experimental measurements of CTOD-resistance curves. The study provides a body of results which enables establishing accurate relationships between J and CTOD for use in testing protocols for toughness measurements.

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