Serban
DIMA
Bogdan
STEFANESCU
STEEL STRUCTURES – basic elements –
DEDICATION
This book is a tribute to the memory of Professor Dragos GEORGESCU, the author of the curricula of STEEL STRUCTURES courses at the French and English Department of the Technical University of Civil Engineering of Bucharest.
STEEL STRUCTURES – basic elements
CONTENTS
Chapter 1 : STEEL STRUCTURES …………………………… 
…. 
11 

1.1. TYPES OF CONSTRUCTION WORKS WITH STEEL STRUCTURES 
… 
11 

1.2. DESIGN. FABRICATION. ERECTION ……………… … ………………… 
13 

1.3. BASIS OF DESIGN ……………………………… …………… …………… 
14 

1.4. STRUCTURAL MEMBERS ……………… 
………………… …………… 
16 

1.5. STRUCTURAL SYSTEMS ……………… 
………………… …………… 
22 

1.5.1. Structural philosophy …………………………….………………….…… 
22 

1.5.2. Structures with a single column …………………………….… ……… 
23 

1.5.2.1. Structural philosophy ………………………… ………………… ……… 
23 

1.5.2.2. Structural systems …………………………… …………………………… 
26 

1.5.3. Structures with a number of columns in a line ………………….…… 
27 

1.5.4. Structures with a number of orthogonal column lines …… ……… 
28 

1.5.4.1. Structural philosophy ………………….…………………………………… 
_{2}_{8} 

1.5.4.2. Single storey buildings ………………………… ………….……………… 
29 

1.5.4.3. Multistorey buildings ………………………… ………….… …………… 
30 
Chapter 2 : RELIABILITY OF STEEL STRUCTURES ……… 
…. 
33 

2.1. GENERAL ASPECTS ………………………………………………………… 
33 

2.2. ALLOWABLE STRESS METHOD (DETERMINISTIC METHOD) ….…… 
33 

2.3. PROBABILISTIC ANALYSIS OF RELIABILITY ….……………………… 
38 

2.3.1. Probabilistic bases ……………………………….……………… 
……… 
38 

2.3.2. Resistance randomness ……………….……….…….…….… 
… 
…… 
38 

2.3.3. Force randomness …………………….………….……………… 
……… 
41 

2.3.4. Safety analysis …………………… 
………….…….…….…… 
… 
…… 
42 
5
STEEL STRUCTURES – basic elements
2.3.5. Probabilistic methods …………………….………….………… ……… 
43 

2.3.6. The semiprobabilistic limit states method (level 1) ………………… 
43 

2.3.6.1. Limit states ………………………… ……….…….………… …………… 
43 

2.3.6.2. Actions ………………………… …………… ……………….…………… 
44 

2.3.6.3. Design values of actions ………………………… 
………….…………… 
45 

2.3.6.4. Load combinations (combinations of actions) …… 
…………….… 
… 
45 
2.3.6.5. Material design properties ………….….…………… 
…….… ………… 
48 

2.3.6.6. Ultimate limit state ………………………… ……… 
……….…….……… 
49 

2.3.6.7. Serviceability limit state ………………………… 
………….……….….… 
50 

2.3.6.8. Conclusive remarks ………….……………… ….……….….….………… 
51 

2.3.7. The reliability index _{β}_{β}_{β}_{β} method (level 2) ………………………………… 
51 

2.3.8. The probabilistic method (level 3) ……….………….….……….……… 
55 
Chapter 3 : STRUCTURAL STEEL ………
………………………
57
3.1. MATERIALS …………………………………………………………………… 
57 

3.2. CHEMICAL COMPOSITION. CRYSTALLINE STRUCTURE 
…………… 
58 

3.3. STEEL MAKING ……………………………………………………………… 
63 

3.4. ROLLING PROCESS INFLUENCE ………………………………………… 
64 

3.5. RESISTANCE AGAINST BRITTLE FRACTURE ………………………… 
66 

3.6. INFLUENCES OF TEMPERATURE ON THE PROPERTIES OF STEEL 
67 

3.7. FATIGUE BEHAVIOUR ……………………………………………………… 
67 

3.8. CORROSION …………………….………… ………….…………………… 
69 

3.9. SHAPES …………………………………… ………………………………… 
70 

3.9.1. General ……………………………………………………………….……… 
70 

3.9.2. Structural imperfections ……………….………………………….……… 
71 

3.9.2.1. Residual stresses ………………………… … …………….….………… 
71 

3.9.2.2. Nonhomogeneity of mechanical properties …….……….… 
… 
……… 
72 

3.9.3. 
Geometrical imperfections ….…………….….………………… 
……… 
73 

3.10. 
STRUCTURAL STEEL REQUIREMENTS …….…………………………… 
73 

3.11. 
STRUCTURAL STEEL GRADES …….….……………… 
….…………… 
79 
6
STEEL STRUCTURES – basic elements
Chapter 4 : CONNECTING DEVICES ……… 
…………… 
…… 
81 

GENERAL 4.1. ……………………………………………………………………… 
81 

WELDING 4.2. ………………….………….…….……….………………………… 
81 

4.2.1. General ……………………………………………………………….……… 
81 

4.2.2. Weldability …………………………………… …………………….……… 
82 

4.2.3. Structural welding process and materials ……………….…….……… 
83 

4.2.4. Metallurgic phenomena in the welding process ……………….… 
… 
85 

4.2.5. Thermal phenomena in welding process …….….…….…….….… 
… 
86 

4.2.6. Welding positions …………………………………………… 
…….… 
… 
87 

4.2.7. Weld details ………………… 
……………………………… 
…….… 
… 
88 

4.2.8. Welding defects …………….…… 
….…………….…….… 
…….… 
… 
89 

4.2.9. Weld inspection methods …………….…… 
…… ……… 
… 
… 
… 
90 

4.2.10. Strength of welded joints ………………… 
…… ……… 
… 
… 
… 
91 

4.2.10.1. Butt welds ……………… ….………………………………………… 
… 
92 

4.2.10.2. Fillet welds ……………… ….…… 
…… ………………………… 
… 
95 

4.3. BOLTS ……………………………….…….…………………………………… 
102 

4.3.1. General ……………………………………………………………….……… 
102 

4.3.2. Classification of bolts ……………………………………….…….……… 
103 

4.3.3. Behaviour and design resistance of bolts …………………… 
… 
… 
104 

4.3.3.1. Loading and tightening ……………… 
….…………………………… 
… 
104 

4.3.3.2. Behaviour of normal bolts in shear connections …….…….….…… 
… 
105 

4.3.3.3. Behaviour of high strength bolts in slip connections …………….……… 
_{1}_{0}_{9} 

4.3.3.4. Behaviour of bolts in tension …………….………………………………… 
_{1}_{1}_{1} 

4.3.3.5. Design resistance of bolts according to STAS 10108/0–78, C133–82 
_{1}_{1}_{2} 

4.3.4. Spacing of holes …………………… 
… …………………………………. 
113 

4.3.5. Categories of bolted connections according to EUROCODE 3 …… 
114 

4.3.6. Examples of calculation ………………………………….……… 
… 
… 
115 

4.3.6.1. General aspects ……………… 
… ……….………………………… 
… 
115 

4.3.6.2. Connection loaded only in its plane …….……… ……….……… 
… 
116 

4.3.6.3. Connection loaded normally on its plane ……….……… …….…… 
… 
118 
7
STEEL STRUCTURES – basic elements
Chapter 5 : DESIGN OF STRUCTURAL MEMBERS ……… 
… 
121 

5.1. BASIS OF DESIGN …………………………………………………………… 
121 

5.1.1. Design method …………….………………………….…………….……… 
121 

5.1.2. Stability of steel structures …………….………………………………… 
121 

5.1.3. Crosssection particularities …………….……………………….……… 
122 

5.1.4. Classification of crosssections ………… 
….….………….……….… 
123 

5.1.5. Elastic and plastic design ………….….… 
… ……….…….…… 
…… 
126 

5.2. TENSION MEMBERS ………………………………………………………… 
129 

5.2.1. General …………….…………….…………….……….…………….……… 
129 

5.2.2. Types of single and builtup members …….……… ………….……… 
129 

5.2.3. Calculation ……….….………….…………….……….…………….……… 
131 

5.3. COMPRESSION MEMBERS ………………………………………………… 
132 

5.3.1. General …………….…………….…………….……….…………….……… 
132 

5.3.2. Buckling ………………….……………….…….….……….……… 
… 
… 
133 

5.3.2.1. Buckling and local buckling ……………… 
… 
……….…………… 
… 
133 

5.3.2.2. Forms of buckling ………………………… 
… 
……….…………… 
… 
134 

5.3.2.3. Approach methods ………….……………… 
… 
…… …………… 
… 
134 

5.3.2.4. Bifurcation and divergence of equilibrium ………….………… …… 
… 
137 

5.3.2.5. The general equation of stability ………….…………………… …… 
… 
138 

5.3.2.6. Flexural buckling ………….……………………… 
…………… …… 
… 
141 

5.3.2.7. Buckling curves ………….………….…………… 
…………… …… 
… 
145 

5.3.3. Practical design of compressed members …….…….….…… 
… 
… 
151 

5.3.3.1. Crosssection philosophy ……………… 
… … 
…….…………… 
… 
151 

5.3.3.2. Types of members in compression …….………… … 
… …… 
… 
152 

5.3.3.3. Connecting elements of a compressed member ……………… 
… 
153 

5.3.3.4. Checking procedure for members in compression ……………… 
… 
156 

5.4. FLEXURAL MEMBERS …………….…………….….……….……………… 
164 

5.4.1. General …………….…………….…………….……….…………….……… 
164 

5.4.2. Beams and plate girders …….…….….…… 
……………………… 
… 
164 

5.4.2.1. Crosssection philosophy ……………… 
… … 
…….…………… 
… 
164 

5.4.2.2. Behaviour of beams ……………… 
… … 
…….…………… 
… 
168 

5.4.2.3. Main checks for a member in bending ………….….… 
………… 
… 
171 
8
STEEL STRUCTURES – basic elements
5.4.2.4. Procedure for sizing of the crosssection ……………… 
………… 
… 
178 

5.4.3. Lattice girders …….…….….……………… 
……………………… 
… 
180 

5.4.3.1. General ……………… 
… 
… ……………………… 
…………… 
… 
180 

5.4.3.2. Geometric schemes ……………… ………………… 
…………… 
… 
182 

5.4.3.3. Crosssections of bars ……………… ……………… 
…………… 
… 
183 

5.4.3.4. Joint details …………………………… ……………… 
…………… 
… 
183 

5.4.3.5. Calculation of efforts in bars …………… 
……….… 
…………… 
… 
184 

5.4.3.6. Main checks …………… 
………………… 
………… 
…………… 
… 
184 
BIBLIOGRAPHY ………
…………………………………………
9
185
STEEL STRUCTURES – basic elements
10
1. STEEL STRUCTURES
Chapter 1
STEEL STRUCTURES
1.1. TYPES OF CONSTRUCTION WORKS WITH STEEL STRUCTURES
Construction works is the general term including both buildings (apartment houses, offices, schools, etc.) and civil engineering works (TV towers, tanks, etc.). Structure (Structural system) is an assemblage of load carrying structural members joined to provide the required strength, stiffness and ductility of a construction work. Cladding is the exterior covering of the structure. By cladding (roof + side wall) a certain volume is separated from the atmosphere. This separation is made to create in the interior all the conditions required by a human activity that can not be developed in open air. Construction works with steel structures can be classified in three types, depending on the presence or role of cladding:
1. Type S.C. (Construction work = Structure + Cladding) This is the most general type (Fig. 1.1).
Fig. 1.1. Type S.C. construction work
ding
This type (S.C.) of construction works is largely represented by all kind of buildings:
• one storey industrial buildings (Fig. 1.2a);
• apartment houses, offices, hotels, schools, colleges etc. (Fig. 1.2b);
• sport halls, theatres etc.
11
1. STEEL STRUCTURES
Fig. 1.2. Examples of type S.C. construction works
2. Type S. (Construction work = Structure only)
This type (Fig. 1.3) is represented by all kind of civil engineering works when
cladding is not necessary, like:
• transmission towers (Fig. 1.3a);
( a )
( b )
Fig. 1.3. Examples of type S. construction works
12
1. STEEL STRUCTURES
3. Type C. (Construction work = Structural cladding) This type (Fig. 1.4) is represented by all kind of civil engineering works when cladding is structural, like:
• tanks (Fig. 1.4a);
• spherical vessels (Fig. 1.4b);
• chimneys (Fig. 1.4c);
• silos etc.
( a )
Fig. 1.4. Examples of type C. construction works
1.2. DESIGN. FABRICATION. ERECTION
A steel structure results by assembling on site a number of various structural members, like beams, columns etc. (Fig. 1.5) prefabricated in fabrication shops.
p
p
Q
Fig. 1.5. Examples of structural members
13
1. STEEL STRUCTURES
The main steps to realise a steel structure are:
• design of the structure;
• fabrication of structural members in fabrication shops (using plates and
profiles which are produced in steel works);
• transport of structural members on site;
• erection of the structure by assembling structural members on site.
All the technical activities involved, meaning design, production of shapes and
plates, fabrication of the structural members and erection must comply with
requirements contained in principles and application rules provided by the codes.
1.3. BASIS OF DESIGN
A structure shall satisfy the following requirements during its intended lifetime:
1. It must sustain with appropriate degrees of reliability all actions to occur during its
construction and intended use.
2. It must remain fit for its required use.
This usually leads to two types of requirements to be checked:
• strength requirement – in order to resist all actions to occur during its intended
lifetime;
• stiffness requirement – in order to remain fit for its required use (allowable
14
1. STEEL STRUCTURES
The strength requirement is expressed by
E
d
≤ C
d
( 1.1 )
In eq. (1.1) and in figure 1.6:
E
C
_{d} 
is the design value of that effect of actions: 

N 
– 
axial force (+ tension;  compression); 

M 
– bending moment; 

Q 
– 
shear force; 

M _{t} 
– torsion moment. 

N, M, Q, M _{t} are efforts and they are effects of external forces. 

_{d} 
is the design capacity of the structural member, for the considered effort N, M, 
Q or M _{t} .
The stiffness requirement is expressed by:
∆ ≤ ∆
a
( 1.2 )
where:
_{∆}_{∆}_{∆}_{∆}
_{∆}_{∆}_{∆}_{∆} _{a} – the allowable deformation.
– the calculated deformation;
Example
Fig. 1.7. Example
Strength requirement
E
d
C
d
M
= =
Sd
M
= =
Rd
p
⋅
2
L
8
W
⋅
R
(calculated)
(calculated)
15
1. STEEL STRUCTURES
E
d
≤ C
d
M
Sd
≤ M
Rd
p ⋅
^{L} ^{2} ≤
8
Stiffness requirement
∆ =
f
=
∆
a
=
f
a
∆ ≤ ∆
a
5
⋅
p
⋅
4
L
384 EI
(calculated)
=
L
300
(allowable)
f ≤ f
a
5 p
⋅
4
L
⋅
384
EI
≤
In the above relations:
W
L
⋅
R
300
W 
– section modulus of the crosssection; 
R 
– design strength of the steel grade that is used; 
EI 
– stiffness of the crosssection of the member. 
The strength requirements and the stiffness ones can be found in codes of
practice as principles and application rules.
Principles comprise:
• general statements and definitions for which there is no alternative;
• requirements and analytical models for which no alternative is permitted.
Application rules, usually called recommendations in the codes, are recognised
rules that follow the principles and satisfy their requirements. It is allowed to use
alternative rules, different from the recommendations (application rules) given in the
codes, provided that it is proved that the alternative rules comply with the principles
and provide at least the same reliability.
1.4. STRUCTURAL MEMBERS
Structural members are prefabricated in fabrication shops using a large range
of products for steel construction produced in steel works:
• standard profiles (shapes)
angle
I shape (W shape)
16
etc.
1. STEEL STRUCTURES
• rolled plates.
Some builtup elements like plate girders or box sections are fabricated in
fabrication shops, usually by welding.
The main structural members can be classified with respect to the dominant efforts N
(axial force), M (bending moment), Q (shear force), as follows:
1. Beam is a structural member whose primary function is to carry loads transverse
to its longitudinal axis (Fig. 1.8). The dominant effort is M (bending moment).
p
Fig. 1.8. Beam
M
Fig. 1.9. Typical stress distribution for a beam
N _{S}_{d} = 0 T – C = 0 T = C 
( 1.3 ) 
M _{S}_{d} ≠ 0 M _{S}_{d} = T ⋅ z M _{R}_{d} 
( 1.4 ) 
where:
M _{S}_{d} – action (bending moment produced by external forces);
M _{R}_{d} –
capacity (resistant bending moment);
C 
– resultant of compression normal stresses on the crosssection; 
T 
– resultant of tension normal stresses on the crosssection. 
17
1. STEEL STRUCTURES
Remark: The crosssection must be developed (Fig. 1.10) in the plane of the acting bending moment M in order to increase the resistant bending moment M _{R}_{d} , i.e. in the plane of the acting forces (greater h → greater z → greater M _{R}_{d} = T ⋅ z).
Fig. 1.10. Typical development of the crosssection
Typical problem: The risk of lateral instability (lateral buckling) (Fig. 1.11a) or local instability (local buckling) (Fig. 1.11b) is typical for metal (steel or aluminium alloy) members subjected to bending moment.
( a )
( b )
Fig. 1.11. Typical instability problems for metal members in bending
Depending on the practical solution adopted for a beam, the following ones are the most commonly used crosssections:
1.a. Rolled beam is a structural beam produced by rolling (hot rolling). The most commonly used shapes (Fig. 1.12) for beams are the following ones:
IPE, HE, HL, HD, HP, W, UB, UC
IPN
Fig. 1.12. The most commonly used hot rolled shapes for beams
18
1. STEEL STRUCTURES
1.b. Plate girder (Fig. 1.13) is a builtup structural beam, usually made of welded rolled plates (sometimes they may be bolted or riveted, especially in the case of aluminium alloy).
Fig. 1.13. Typical plate girder crosssection
1.c. Lattice girder (Fig. 1.14) is a builtup structural beam made of a triangulated system of bars subjected to axial forces. It is able to resist forces acting in it’s plane.
Fig. 1.14. Example of lattice girder
M _{S}_{d} ≠ 0 M _{S}_{d} = M _{R}_{d} = C ⋅ h (or M _{R}_{d} = T ⋅ h)
N _{S}_{d} = 0 T + D ⋅cosα – C = 0
D
=
19
C
−
T
cos
α
( 1.5 )
( 1.6 )
1. STEEL STRUCTURES
Truss (Fig. 1.15) is a lattice girder used in the roof framing.
Fig. 1.15. Example of truss
1.d. Coldformed shape (Fig. 1.16) is a crosssection obtained from plates by bending or by rolling at normal temperature. They are especially used for purlins (secondary beams of the roof structure).
Fig. 1.16. Examples of coldformed crosssections used for beams
2. Column (Fig. 1.17) is a structural member whose primary function is to carry loads acting in its longitudinal axis. The dominant effort is N.
( a ) Fig. 1.17. Examples of columns
( b )
ckling
Remark: The fact that practically all the compressed structural members are sized by the buckling resistance of the member is typical for steel structures. In the concrete structures the loss of stability is an uncommon phenomenon. For the column in fig 1.17a the strength requirement (1.1) turns into:
π 2 ⋅ EI
⋅
h
e
)
2
P
Sd
≤
P
Rd
External force
Critical force
20
( 1.7 )
1. STEEL STRUCTURES
As a result, in order to avoid buckling in any vertical plane, the crosssection
must be developed in its plane, like shown in figure 1.18.
Fig. 1.18. Examples of crosssections for columns
3. Beamcolumn (Fig. 1.19) is a structural member whose primary function is to
carry both transverse to longitudinal axis and acting in its longitudinal axis forces.
The dominant efforts are M and N.
P
H
N
M
h
M = H × h
Fig. 1.19. Example of beamcolumn
Remark: The following are typical for the crosssections used in metal structures:
• the crosssection is preferentially developed in the plane of the acting bending
moment with regard to the strong axis yy (Fig. 1.20a);
• in the situations when it is necessary, the moment of inertia (second moment of
the area) with regard to the weak axis zz is improved (Fig. 1.20c).
I _{y} >> I _{z} ( a )
I _{y} I _{z} ( b )
y
I _{z} is improved by lips ( c )
Fig. 1.20. Examples of crosssections for beams, columns and beamcolumns
21
1. STEEL STRUCTURES
4. Structural wall (Fig. 1.21) is a structural member whose primary function is to carry both vertical and horizontal forces acting in the plane of the wall.
Fig. 1.21. Example of structural wall
4.a. Vertical bracing (Fig. 1.22) is a structural wall made of a triangulated system of bars subjected to axial forces.
Fig. 1.22. Example of vertical bracing
1.5. STRUCTURAL SYSTEMS
1.5.1. Structural philosophy
The concept of steel structural system is largely influenced by some particularities of structural steel as a material and of the behaviour of the structural members. As a result, steel design is based on its own structural philosophy, which presents some particularities in comparison with the concept of structural systems in reinforced concrete, brick or timber.
22
1. STEEL STRUCTURES
1.5.2. Structures with a single column
1.5.2.1. Structural philosophy
Problem 1 (Fig. 1.23)
Lead to ground (Fig. 1.23a) a vertical force P (gravitational) acting at the level
h from the ground in the plane xOy.


x 
point A P P 


A h N = P y B 

h 

O 






( a ) Fig. 1.23. Leading a vertical force to the ground
Solution
( b )
Use a vertical bar on the acting line of the force P to connect the point A to the
point B on the ground (Fig. 1.23b).
Remarks
1. This solution is the most economical, thanks to the following:
• the path AB is the shortest one to carry the force P to the ground;
• only the force P is to carry on the load path AB (according to a principle of
structural mechanics, a force translates on its acting line by its value).
2. This solution, corresponding to the case of a vertical force, can also be applied in
the case of an inclined force P.
Problem 2 (Fig. 1.24)
Lead to the ground a horizontal force H (wind, seismic action, etc.) parallel to
the ground, acting at the level h.
23
1. STEEL STRUCTURES
x
O
H
h
y
point A
Fig. 1.24. Leading a horizontal force to the ground
General remark In accordance with a principle of structural mechanics, a force H displaces parallel to itself by its value H and a bending moment M. As a result, it is much more expensive to carry a horizontal force to the ground than to carry a vertical one.
Solution a (Fig. 1.25) Use a bar transverse to the acting line of the force H to connect the point A to the point B on the ground.
^{H}
h
A
B
Q = H
M = H × h
Fig. 1.25. Solution a for leading a horizontal force to the ground
Remark a Using this solution, the required area of material to carry a horizontal force H could be 5 to 10 times (in some cases even more) greater than the required area to carry the same force acting vertically P = H.
24
1. STEEL STRUCTURES
Solution b (Fig. 1.26)
Use a vertical bracing; the simplest one is a triangulated system.
C
C cos
=
⋅
T
α +
T cos
⋅
C
=
T
=
H
2 cos
⋅
α
α =
H
Fig. 1.26. Solution b for leading a horizontal force to the ground
Remark b
This solution is more economical, because the force H is carried to the ground
by axial forces. For instance, if the force H = P the steel consumption is 2 to 3 times
greater than for the same force P acting vertically, depending on the distance a
between the supports. The greater the distance a is, the arm lever increases and, as
a result, the forces diminish.
Problem 3 (Fig. 1.27)
Lead to the ground a vertical force P and a horizontal force H parallel to the
ground, acting at the level h from the ground, in the plane xOy.
x P 

O h H 

point A y 

Fig. 1.27. Leading a horizontal force and a vertical force to the ground
25
1. STEEL STRUCTURES
Solutions (Fig. 1.28)
Four possible solutions are presented, based on the previously discussed ones:
• (a) cantilever;
• (b) structural wall (solved as a vertical bracing);
• (c) a triangulated system;
• (d) guyed tower.
The solution (d) represents a combination between (a) and (c). The cables must be
in tension in any loading case so they need to be pretensioned. As a result, the initial
tension in the cables T _{i}_{n}_{i}_{t} must be greater than the highest compression C _{H} produced
Fig. 1.28. Solutions for leading a horizontal force and a vertical force to the ground
1.5.2.2. Structural systems
Some structural systems based on the solutions presented in figure 1.28 are
shown in figure 1.29. These solutions are developed in order to realise spatial
structures, required both by stability requirements and by the effects of horizontal
Fig. 1.29. Structural systems with a single column
26
1. STEEL STRUCTURES
1.5.3. Structures with a number of columns in a line
Fig. 1.30. Steel structure for sustaining a pipeline
This solution is typical for steel structures and is characterized by:
• cantilever columns (C) (Fig. 1.30), sized to resist the vertical forces P and the horizontal forces H transverse to the line of columns; they also provide the required stiffness in the transverse plane (each column resists its own P and H forces); for this reason, their crosssections are developed in the plane of the acting bending moment produced by the transverse forces H;
• a vertical bracing (VB) (Fig. 1.30), sized to resist all the horizontal forces _{Σ}_{Σ}_{Σ}_{Σ}_{L} acting in the longitudinal direction and to provide the required strength and stiffness in the longitudinal direction;
• two continuous beams (B) (Fig. 1.30), sized to resist the vertical loads P acting between columns and to transmit them to the columns; at the same time, the beams connect the columns in the longitudinal direction. Remarks The vertical bracing is typical for a steel structure. It is located in the middle of the structure, to allow a good behaviour of the structure to the effects of temperature variations. Builtup crosssections able to resist bending moments in two planes like those ones in figure 1.31 are to be avoided due to their high cost of fabrication.
Fig. 1.31. Crosssections that are not very common for steel columns
27
1. STEEL STRUCTURES
1.5.4. Structures with a number of orthogonal column lines
1.5.4.1. Structural philosophy
Problem 4
Lead to the ground vertical (P), horizontal (H) and inclined (I) forces acting on
the roof or on the floor of a building (Fig. 1.32).
Fig. 1.32. Leading to the ground forces acting on the roof
Solutions
Figure 1.33 shows three possible solutions, which are compared in table 1.1
from the point of view of their strength, stiffness and ductility properties.
Strength 
is the resistance to the forces S (N, Q, M, M _{t} ) produced by the loads. 
Stiffness 
is the resistance to the deformations ∆, γ, θ produced by the loads. 
Ductility 
is the capacity to dissipate energy by large plastic deformations. 
Solution 2: C.B.F. = Concentrically Braced Frame
buckling
Solution 3: E.B.F. = Eccentrically Braced Frame
plastic zone
plastic hinge
Fig. 1.33. Possible solutions for leading forces acting on the roof
28
1. STEEL STRUCTURES
Table 1.1. Comparison among possible solutions
Strength 
Stiffness 
Ductility 

M.R.F. 
good 
poor 
very good 
C.B.F. 
good 
very good 
poor 
E.B.F. 
good 
good 
good 
1.5.4.2. Single storey buildings
Figure 1.34 shows a typical structure of a single storey industrial building,
based on the structural philosophy discussed above.
H
L
TRANSVERSE SECTION
RHB
MRF
HTB
_{S}_{I}_{D}_{E} _{V}_{I}_{E}_{W}
PLAN VIEW
Pr
Fig. 1.34. A typical steel structure for a single storey industrial building
The structure is composed of:
• transverse MRF, sized to resist vertical (P) and horizontal (H) forces and to
provide the required strength and stiffness in the transverse plane; each MRF
resists its own P and H forces and their crosssections are developed in the plane
of the acting bending moment M produced by the transverse forces H;
• vertical bracing VB, sized to resist all longitudinal forces _{Σ}_{Σ}_{Σ}_{Σ}_{L} acting in the
longitudinal direction and to provide the required strength and stiffness in the
longitudinal direction;
29
1. STEEL STRUCTURES
• roof framing, consisting of roof horizontal bracing RHB, composed of horizontal
transverse bracing HTB and horizontal longitudinal bracing HLB, in order to
provide torsional rigidity of the structure and purlins Pr to resist vertical forces
acting on the roof and to transmit them to the MRF;
• crane runway girders CRG, to resist the forces produced by cranes and to
transmit their P and H forces to the MRF and L forces to the VB.
Remark:
Trusses are often used instead of girders for long span buildings. In this case
MRF is composed of columns and trusses, usually pin connected, like in figure 1.35.
Fig. 1.35. A steel structure for a single storey industrial building using trusses
1.5.4.3. Multistorey buildings
Figure 1.36 shows a modern concept of a multistorey steel structure
composed of two systems:
• a frame system (F), resisting both vertical (P) and horizontal (H and L) forces; this
could be a moment resisting frame (MRF), a concentrically braced frame (CBF)
or an eccentrically braced frame (EBF);
• a gravitational system, resisting only vertical forces (P).
Rigid diaphragm floors and side frame systems provide the torsional rigidity of the
whole building, which is fundamental for the good behaviour of the structure when
subjected to horizontal loads.
Figure 1.37 shows three very well known presentday performances in high
rise skyscrapers construction.
30
1. STEEL STRUCTURES
PLAN
Gravitational system (G)
SECTION 1 – 1
Frame system (F)
Fig. 1.36. A modern concept of a multistorey steel structure
Petronas Towers 452m – 88 floors – 1998
Fig. 1.37. Presentday performances in skyscrapers
Sears Tower
Empire State
442m – 108 floors – 1974 381m – 1931
31
1. STEEL STRUCTURES
Figure 1.38 shows the tallest building in the world, Taipei 101, situated in Taipei, Taiwan.
Taipei 101 509m – 101 floors – 2004 Fig. 1.38. Presentday tallest building in the world
32
2. RELIABILITY OF STEEL STRUCTURES
Chapter 2
RELIABILITY OF STEEL STRUCTURES
2.1. GENERAL ASPECTS
In order to check the safety of a structure it is necessary to assess whether a dangerous situation, able to make the structure unusable, might be reached due to some extreme events. There are three types of methods to make the analysis of steel structure reliability:
• deterministic methods, which consider all parameters with their deterministic values;
• probabilistic methods, which consider all parameters and the relations among them as random variables; they are difficult to carry on and they need a very sophisticated mathematical procedure; they also need a great amount of data about loads, material properties etc.;
• semiprobabilistic methods, which use probabilistic models to establish the values for actions and capacities but they compare them using deterministic models; most of present day design codes for steel structures use such methods. Generally, when checking the safety of a structural element or of a whole structure, the following requirements are to be satisfied:
• strength requirement;
• stiffness requirement.
In some cases, like seismic design, ductility requirements need also to be fulfilled.
2.2. ALLOWABLE STRESS METHOD (DETERMINISTIC METHOD)
In this method the strength requirement is expressed by the following relation:
σ ≤ σ
all
( 2.1 )
In this equation (2.1) the allowable stress σ _{a}_{l}_{l} is given by:
33
2. RELIABILITY OF STEEL STRUCTURES
σ
all
=
σ
c
c
( 2.2 )
where c is a global safety coefficient taking into account the following possibilities:
• actual nominal loads considered in calculating the effective stress σ in equation (2.1) could be greater than assumed;
• actual nominal yielding stress σ _{c} in equation (2.2) could be lower than presumed;
• fabrication and/or erection may produce unfavourable effects. The stiffness requirement is expressed by the following equation (same as
(1.2)):
∆ ≤ ∆
a
( 2.3 )
where ∆ and ∆ _{a} are the calculated and the allowable deformation respectively.
Critical remark
The method considers only a simultaneous increase of the loads that can unfavourably affect a correct analysis of the reliability, especially when permanent loads (dead loads) are significantly smaller than the imposed ones (live loads). The following two examples point out the facts that:
• a snowfall is always more dangerous for the structural members of a roof when the cover is in steel sheeting than for a concrete slab (example 2.1);
• on the same roof structure, the effect of wind suction is always more dangerous when the cover is very light, like in steel sheeting construction (example 2.2).
Example 2.1.
For the structure shown in figure 2.1 the following are given:
•
snow load:
• steel OL37:
s = 1.2 kN/m ^{2}
_{c} = 240N/m ^{2} ; c = 1,5;
σ
all
=
σ
c
c
= 160N mm
2
the following are required:
• size the bottom chord of the truss considering two possible solutions:
1. concrete slab cover: 
3 kN/m ^{2} 
2. steel sheeting cover: 
0.1 kN/m ^{2} 
• for the chosen bottom chord shapes, examine the behaviour under the action of a snowload increased from 1,2kN/m ^{2} (a) to 2,0kN/m ^{2} (b).
34
2. RELIABILITY OF STEEL STRUCTURES
8
Fig. 2.1. Example 2.1
a. Bottom chord sizing _{→}_{→}_{→}_{→} snow = 1,2kN/m ^{2}
Concrete slab cover
Dead load (D):
•
•
concrete slab cover:
steel structure weight:
3,0kN/m
0,4kN/m
^{2}
^{2}
D = 3,4kN/m ^{2}
Live load (L):
•
Total load = D + L = 3,4 + 1,2 = 4,6 kN/m ^{2}
Total load on truss = p ⋅ L _{t} = 4,6 × 10 = 46 kN/m
snow load:
p
q
1,2kN/m ^{2}
Steel sheeting cover
Dead load (D):
•
•
steel sheeting cover:
steel structure weight:
0,1kN/m
0,3kN/m
^{2}
^{2}
D = 0,4kN/m ^{2}
Live load (L):
•
Total load = D + L = 0,4 + 1,2 = 1,6 kN/m ^{2}
Total load on truss = p ⋅ L _{t} = 1,6 × 10 = 16 kN/m
snow load:
p
q
1,2kN/m ^{2}
Bending moments (M)
M
N
= 
⋅ q L 2 
= 46 
× 
24 
2 

8 
8 

= 
M = 
3312 
= 
1104kN 

h 
3 
= 3312kNm
M =
Axial efforts (N)
N =
Crosssection shapes
q L
⋅
2
16
×
24
2
=
8
8
=
1152kNm
M
1152
=
h 3
= 384kN
150 ×××× 150 ×××× 12 A = 69,6cm ^{2}
80 ×××× 80 ×××× 8 A = 24,6cm ^{2}
Strength check
σ =
1104
N 10
×
3
=
A 10
69,6
×
2
=
159N mm
2 < σ
a
σ =
N 384
=
× 156N mm
× 10
2
=
10
3
A 24,6
2 < σ
a
35
2. RELIABILITY OF STEEL STRUCTURES
c =
σ
^{c}
240
= =
159
σ
1,51
Security level
c
=
σ
240
^{c} =
σ
156
=
1,54
b. Bottom chord check _{→}_{→}_{→}_{→} snow = 2,0kN/m ^{2}
Concrete slab cover
p = D + L = 3,4 + 20 = 5,4 kN/m ^{2}
q = p ⋅ L _{t} = 5,4 × 10 = 54 kN/m
M
N
=
=
σ =
c
=
q L
⋅
2
54
×
24
2
= 
= 

8 
8 

M 
= 
3888 
= 1296kN 

h 
3 

N 
= 
1296 
× 10 
3 

A 
69,6 
× 10 2 

σ 
^{c} 
= 
240 
= 1,29 

σ 
186,2 
3888kNm
= 186,2N mm
2
Steel sheeting cover
p = D + L = 0,4 + 20 = 2,4 kN/m ^{2}
q = p ⋅ L _{t} = 2,4 × 10 = 24 kN/m
M
N
=
=
σ =
c
=
⋅ q L 2 
= 24 × 
24 2 

8 
8 

M = 
1728 = 576kN 

h 
3 

N = 
576 
× 10 3 

A 
24,6 
× 10 2 
= 1728kNm
= 234,1N mm
σ ^{c} =
240
=
σ 234,1
1,025
≅
1,0
2
Remark
Under the action of a snow load increased from 1,2kN/m ^{2} to 2,0kN/m ^{2} , which
is to be expected to occur in the intended life of the building:
• in the case of a concrete slab cover the safety coefficient decreases from c=1,51,
but a value of 1,29 still remains;
• in the case of steel sheeting cover, practically there is no more load carrying
capacity, as the safety factor decreases from c=1,54 to c=1,0.
This remark underlines a weakness of the method, that the crosssection of the steel
solution was not well sized. A possible increase of the snow load from the value
considered in design to an accidental one has a more unfavourable effect on a light
roof than on a heavy one. This cannot be outlined by the allowable stress method.
Example 2.2.
Check the bottom chord of the truss sized in example 2.1 for the same
structure without side walls (Fig. 2.2) under the action of a wind suction
g _{w} =0,6kN/m ^{2} . The check is to be made considering summer time, i.e. without the
effect of snow load.
36
2. RELIABILITY OF STEEL STRUCTURES
roof cover
3m
Fig. 2.2. Example 2.2
Concrete slab cover
Dead load (D):
Live load (L):
• wind suction:
Total load
D = 3,4kN.m ^{2}
g _{w} = –0,6kN/m ^{2}
p = D + L = 3,4 – 0,6 = 2,8 kN/m ^{2}
Total load on truss
q
= p ⋅ L _{t} = 2,8 × 10 = 28 kN/m
M =
q L
⋅
2
28
× 24
2
=
8
8
= 2016kNm
N
M 2016
=
=
h 3
=
672kN
150 ×××× 150 ×××× 12 A = 69,6cm ^{2}
σ =
N 672
× 10
3
=
A 69,6
× 10
2
=
c =
R
c
240
=
σ 96,6
96,6N mm
= 2,48
2 < σ
a
Steel sheeting cover
Dead load (D):
Live load (L):
• wind suction:
Total load
D = 0,4kN.m ^{2}
g _{w} = –0,6kN/m ^{2}
p = D + L = 0,4 – 0,6 = –0,2 kN/m ^{2}
Total load on truss
q = p ⋅ L _{t} = –0,2 × 10 = –2,0 kN/m
M =
N
=
q L
⋅
2
−
2,0
×
24
2
=
8
8
= −
M
− 144
=
h
3
= −
48kN
144kNm
80 ×××× 80 ×××× 8 A = 24,6cm ^{2}
N
N
cr,y
cr,z
I _{y} = 144,4cm ^{4}
I _{z} = 318cm ^{4}
2 I
π ⋅
⋅
E
y
= =
f )
(
y
L
2
2,1
π 2 10
×
×
5
×
144,4
×
10
4
(
6000
) ^{2}
π
2
⋅
E ⋅
I
y
= =
f )
(
y
L
2
2
π ×
2,1
×
10
5
×
318
×
10
4
(
24000 ) ^{2}
N _{c}_{r}_{,}_{y} = 83kN; N _{c}_{r}_{,}_{z} = 11,4kN
N _{c}_{r} = min. (N _{c}_{r}_{,}_{y} ; N _{c}_{r}_{,}_{z} )= 11,4kN
c =
N
cr
11,4
=
N 48
=
0,24
37
2. RELIABILITY OF STEEL STRUCTURES
Remarks
1. When the wind suction reaches g _{w} = – 0,4kN/m ^{2} , the total load for steel sheeting
cover becomes:
p = D + L = 0,4 – 0,4 = 0 kN/m ^{2} N = 0 kN σ = 0 N/mm ^{2} ;
2. When the wind suction reaches g _{w} = – 0,6kN/m ^{2} :
• in the case of concrete slab cover the safety factor increases from 1,51 to 2,48;
• in the case of steel sheeting cover the safety coefficient decreases to 0,24 (< 1,0); a collapse is to be expected.
Conclusions
1. In the allowable stress method any progress in information is difficult to be considered because all parameters affecting the reliability of the structure are included in the unique safety coefficient c.
2. Taking into account the above remarks, at present most of the codes replaced the allowable stress method by the limit state method, which is a semi probabilistic method.
2.3. PROBABILISTIC ANALYSIS OF RELIABILITY
2.3.1. Probabilistic bases
A more rational approach to analyse the problem of structural safety is a probabilistic one. In such a model of analysis, all the parameters whose uncertainty can influence the reliability of structures, especially those ones concerning resistance and loads, are considered as random variables.
2.3.2. Resistance randomness
The strength capacity R(s) of a structural member with respect to a certain internal force S (N, M, Q) may be expressed in a general form by:
(
R s
)
(
= f Ω,R
c
)
38
( 2.4 )
2. RELIABILITY OF STEEL STRUCTURES
where _{Ω}_{Ω}_{Ω}_{Ω} is the crosssectional characteristic corresponding to the internal force S,
i.e.:
for members in tension;
for members in bending.
For industrially fabricated steel structural members, the cross sectional
characteristic Ω may be considered as a deterministic value. The yield stress _{c}
must be considered as a random variable.
The following steps are to be followed to define the random variable x = _{c} :
• consider the results on a sample of n = Σn _{i} tensile specimen tests (i.e. n values of
yield stress _{c} );
• according to the values given in table 2.1, draw the histogram in figure 2.3,
noticing that the normalized area of any rectangle on the histogram represents
the ratio:
f
i
=
n
i
n
i
=
n
n
i
( 2.5 )
where n _{i} is the number of samples satisfying the condition:
_{c}_{,}_{i} < x ≤ _{c}_{,}_{i} + ∆ _{c}
( 2.6 )
where ∆ _{c} = 20 N/mm ^{2} as shown in figure 2.3.
Table 2.1. Example of values of the yielding limit _{c}
Calculation 

Results association 
Frequency of 
• 
mean value x _{m} (N/mm ^{2} ) 

results 
• 
dispersion 
D (N ^{2} /mm ^{4} ) 

Interval of 
Interval central values x _{i} 
Absolute 
Relative 
(x 
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