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Title: Local and distortional buckling behaviour of cold-formed steel Z section beams
Author: Haidarali, Mohammad Reza
ISNI:       0000 0004 2705 0833
Awarding Body: Imperial College London
Current Institution: Imperial College London
Date of Award: 2011
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The economic use of cold-formed steel members means that buckling and the possible loss of effectiveness it produces are important features of design. Cross-sectional instabilities in laterally-restrained cold-formed steel beams include local and distortional buckling. The prediction of the true buckling behaviour of cold-formed steel beams accounting for all governing features such as geometrical imperfections, spread of yielding, postbuckling etc. has been possible with the development of advanced numerical modelling. In this thesis, the finite element (FE) method (ABAQUS) has been used to develop numerical analyses to study the buckling behaviour of laterally-restrained cold-formed steel lipped Z-section beams. The FE models were verified against a series of four-point bending tests available from previous research, with special references to material and geometrical nonlinearities. Two sets of analyses have been conducted: FE analyses allowing for both local and distortional buckling and ones allowing for local buckling while distortional buckling is restrained using appropriate boundary conditions. For the former, the controlling buckling mode (local, distortional or combined) at different stages of loading (up to, at and beyond maximum load) has been realized. Comparing the results of two sets of analyses, the effect of distortional buckling on performance for different geometric proportions has been studied. The effect of the lip size, flange width, angle of inclination of the edge stiffener (lip), size and position of the intermediate stiffener and material strength as well as the interaction between them on both the ultimate strength and the buckling of cold-formed Z-section beams has been investigated. Limits for optimum design of the section were proposed. Depending on the geometric properties and material strength of the section, transitions between local, distortional and combined local/distortional buckling were observed. The lip/flange interaction including the interaction between the edge stiffener (lip) and the intermediate stiffener was the key governing feature of behaviour. The effect of the linear moment gradient and sharply varying bending moment on both the ultimate strength and the buckling of cold-formed Z sections was investigated. The latter occurred in two-span continuous beams subject to uniformly distributed loading. The results of moment gradient cases were compared with those of pure bending cases. The suitability of the design treatments available in Eurocode 3 (EC3) for local, combined local/distortional and distortional buckling of cold-formed Z-section beams was assessed. Overall, the EC3 predictions for cross-sectional bending resistances were unconservative. Shortcomings were identified and some suggestions for improvements were made. This included improvements in plate buckling factors for edge-stiffened compression flanges.
Supervisor: Nerthercot, David A. Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral