Research Spotlight: Flexural-Torsional Buckling of General Cold-Formed Steel Columns with Unequal Unbraced Lengths

SSRC 2017 Annual Meeting Presentation

Session SS2A: Technical Presentations: Stability of Thin-Walled Columns
Tuesday, March 21, 2017
3:15 p.m.

Flexural-Torsional Buckling of General Cold-Formed Steel Columns with Unequal Unbraced Lengths

The design of cold-formed steel columns must consider flexural buckling, torsional buckling, and flexural-torsional buckling. The American Iron and Steel Institute incorporated equations for the critical elastic buckling loads corresponding to these failure modes in the North American Specification for the Design of Cold-Formed Steel Members. These equations were originally developed for columns with consistent boundary conditions for all three modes. However it is common in practice to have different unbraced lengths for major axis flexure, minor axis flexure, and torsion. Furthermore, it is common for certain members to be oriented such that intermediate bracing restraint directions do not align with the principal axes. This paper investigates and develops a general formulation of the column buckling equation to incorporate unequal unbraced lengths and non-principal axes.

Robert S. Glauz, RSG Software, Inc., Lee’s Summit, MO