Snap-Buckling of Shallow Prestressed Arches

by Rodney J. Clifton, (M.ASCE), Assoc. Prof. of Engrg.; Div. of Engrg., Brown Univ., Providence, RI,

Serial Information: Journal of the Engineering Mechanics Division, 1970, Vol. 96, Issue 6, Pg. 1157-1170

Document Type: Journal Paper


An analysis is presented of the effect of an initial horizontal thrust on the buckling and post-buckling behavior of a shallow, circular, elastic arch with fixed ends. Loading by a uniform pressure and by a concentrated central force are considered. Dimensionless load-deflection curves are obtained for various values of a geometric parameter and a dimensionless prestress parameter. In comparing arches with the same initial shape, but different initial thrusts, the load corresponding to any value of the central deflection is observed to decrease with increasing precompression and increase with increasing pretension. The susceptibility of a given arch shape to snap-buckling is increased by increasing precompression and decreased by increasing pretension. Also, buckling in an asymmetric mode occurs for shallower and shallower arches with increasing compressive prestress; buckling in a symmetric mode occurs for deeper and deeper arches with increasing tensile prestress. The reduction (increase) in the load minimum with increasing compressive (tensile) prestress is more pronounced than is the reduction (increase) in the load maximum.

Subject Headings: Prestressing | Arches | Elastic analysis | Thrust | Displacement (mechanics) | Parameters (statistics) | Load factors | Pretensioning

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