Testing and numerical analysis of stainless steel I-sections under concentrated end-one-flange loading
dos Santos, Gabriel
A comprehensive investigation into the structural behaviour of austenitic stainless steel welded I-section beams under concentrated transverse end-one-flange loading is reported herein. Ten physical experiments are first described. The experimental results are then presented in terms of the full load-web shortening responses, ultimate loads, out-of-plane deformation fields and failure modes. An extensive finite element modelling study accounting for geometric, material and contact non-linearities was also performed. After successful model validation against the test results, a parametric investigation was conducted considering a range of bearing lengths, different distances of the bearing load to the member end and web slenderness values. The combined experimental and numerical data set was used to assess current European and North American design provisions for the resistance of stainless steel welded I-sections to concentrated end-one-flange loading. The results show that the current design formulae generally lead to safe-sided but rather scattered and conservative capacity predictions with considerable scope for the development of improved design formulae.