Abstract Crack extension in pseudoelastic binary NiTi shape memory alloy (SMA) compact tension (CT) specimens was examined during static loading. The material composition of 50.7at.% Ni (austenitic, pseudoelastic) was investigated using high-energy synchrotron X-ray diffraction. A miniature CT specimen was developed, which is small enough to allow in situ testing in a synchrotron beam line to identify phases, textures and lattice strains in front of a crack tip. Stress-induced martensite in pseudoelastic NiTi SMAs was mapped in front of the crack of a CT specimen during static loading using synchrotron radiation. The phase volume fraction and lattice microstrain results are discussed and compared with results from thermographic measurements. The Poisson effect is observed by comparing the lattice strains in the loading direction and transverse to the loading direction.