Basics in Failure Analysis of Large Structures

by Richard Roberts, Prof.; Mech. Engrg. and Mechanics, Lehigh Univ., Bethlehem, Pa.,
Alan W. Pense, Prof.; Mech. Engrg. and Mechanics, Lehigh Univ., Bethlehem, Pa.,


Serial Information: Civil Engineering—ASCE, 1980, Vol. 50, Issue 5, Pg. 64-66


Document Type: Feature article

Abstract: Failure analysis procedures can usually determine the most probalbe cause of a structural failure. Then it is possible to determine why the initial design, materials selection, and fabrication procedures did not prevent the failure. Results can be used to prevent future failures, restore public confidence, and be part of a legal defense. Article describes basic elements of any failure analysis, supporting technologies and some modern equipment, utilizes recent failures for illustration. Part one of a two-part article. Part one ends with macrospcopic examination and part two picks up with microscopic examination.

Subject Headings: Failures | Steel | Structural stability | Surveys (non-geomatic) | Welding

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