This paper investigates the dynamics of the beam-like structures whose response manifests a strong scale effect. The space-Fractional Euler–Bernoulli beam (s-FEBB) and space-Fractional Timoshenko beam (s-FTB) models, which are suitable for small-scale slender beams and small-scale thick beams, respectively, have been extended to a dynamic case. The study provides appropriate governing equations, numerical approximation, detailed analysis of free vibration, and experimental validation. The parametric study presents the influence of non-locality parameters on the frequencies and shape of modes delivering a depth insight into a dynamic response of small scale beams. The comparison of the s-FEBB and s-FTB models determines the applicability limit of s-FEBB and indicates that the model (also the classical one) without shear effect and rotational inertia can only be applied to beams significantly slender than in a static case. Furthermore, the validation has confirmed that the fractional beam model exhibits very good agreement with the experimental results existing in the literature—for both the static and the dynamic cases. Moreover, it has been proven that for fractional beams it is possible to establish constant parameters of non-locality related to the material and its microstructure, independent of beam geometry, the boundary conditions, and the type of analysis (with or without inertial forces).
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