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Structural Engineering and Mechanics
  Volume 9, Number 6, June 2000, pages 569-588

Plastic collapse of tapered, tip-loaded cantilevered beams
Wilson JF, El-Esnawy NA

    The plastic collapse loads and their locations are predicted for a class of tapered, initially curved, and transversely corrugated cantilevered beams subjected to static tip loading. Results of both closed form and finite element solutions for several rigid perfectly plastic and elastic perfectly plastic beam models are evaluated. The governing equations are cast in nondimensional form for efficient studies of collapse load as it varies with beam geometry and the angle of the tip load. Static experiments for laboratory-scale configurations whose taper flared toward the tip, complemented the theory in that collapse occurred at points about 40% of the beams length from the fixed end. Experiments for low speed impact loading of these configurations showed that collapse occurred further from the fixed end, between the 61% and 71% points. The results may be applied to the design of safer highway guardrail terminal systems that collapse by design under vehicle impact.
Key Words
    beam dynamics, elastic buckling, cantilevered beam, corrugated cross section, curved beam, guardrail, impact loading, initial curvature, plastic collapse, plastic hinge, tapered beam
Wilson JF, Duke Univ, Dept Civil & Environm Engn, Durham, NC 27708 USA
Duke Univ, Dept Civil & Environm Engn, Durham, NC 27708 USA
Cairo Univ, Dept Civil Engn, Cairo, Egypt

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