the need for lower cost and the emergence of adequate welding technologies has brought interest in large integral metallic structures for aircraft applications; however, in integral structures, a crack approaching a stiffener propagates simultaneously in the skin and into the stiffener and breaks it. the use of manufacturing techniques such as high speed machining (hsm), laser beam welding (lbw) and friction stir welding (fsw) requires further experimental and numerical work concerning the fatigue behaviour of panels manufactured using those processes. a testing programme including fatigue crack growth rate characterization in panels fabricated using hsm, lbw and fsw was performed. data obtained at idmec-porto testing panels under load ratio r (min. load / max. load) of 0.1 and 0.5 is presented, and the performance of panels manufactured using the different processes is discussed and compared. the work was developed in the frame of the european union daton project.