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LATERAL BUCKLING OF FRP COMPOSITE CANTILEVER I-BEAMS

LATERAL BUCKLING OF FRP COMPOSITE CANTILEVER I-BEAMS,Pizhong Qiao,Guiping Zou,Julio F. Davalos

LATERAL BUCKLING OF FRP COMPOSITE CANTILEVER I-BEAMS  
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In this paper, a combined analytical and experimental approach is used to characterize the lateral buckling of pultruded Fiber-Reinforced Plastic (FRP) composite cantilever I-beams. An energy method based on nonlinear plate theory is developed, and it includes shear effects and bending-twisting coupling. Three types of buckling mode shape functions, which all satisfy the cantilever beam boundary conditions, are used to derive the critical buckling loads. The effects of tip-load position, fiber orientation and fiber volume fraction on the critical buckling loads are investigated. Four common FRP I-beams with different cross-sectional geometries and various span lengths are experimentally tested, and the critical buckling loads are measured. A good agreement among the proposed analytical method, experimental testing and finite-element modeling is observed, and simplified explicit equations for lateral buckling of cantilever I-beams with the applied load at the centroid of the cross-section are formulated. The proposed analytical solution can be used to predict the lateral buckling loads for FRP cantilever I-beams and to assist practitioners to perform buckling analyses of customized FRP shapes as well as to optimize innovative sections.
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