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COMPUTERS AND STRUCTURES, INC.

, BERKELEY, CALIFORNIA SEPTEMBER 2002

STEEL FRAME DESIGN BS 5950-90

Technical Note

Classification of Sections
This Technical Note explains the classification of sections when the user selects the BS 5950-90 design code. The parameters R, c and and the slenderness ratios are the major factors in classification of section.

Overview
The nominal strengths for axial compression and flexure are dependent on the classification of the section as Class 1 (Plastic), Class 2 (Compact), Class 3 (Semi-Compact), or Class 4 (Slender). The program checks the sections according to Table 1 (BS 3.5.2). The section dimensions used in the tables are given in Figure 1. The parameters R, c and along with the slenderness ratios are the major factors in classification of sections.

R is the ratio of mean longitudinal stress in the web to y in a section. This implies that for a section in pure bending, R is zero. In calculating R, compression is taken as positive and tension is taken as negative. R is calculated as follows: R= P Ag y

is given as 2c/d, where c is the distance from the plastic neutral axis to the edge of the web connected to the compression flange. For >2, the section is treated as having compression throughout. = c d /2 P D , T 2 y t 2 for I and Channel sections

c =

P D , T 2 4 yt

for Box and Double Channel section

Classification of Sections

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Steel Frame Design BS 5950-90

Classification of Sections

In calculating c, compression is taken as negative and tension is taken as positive.

is defined as follows: 275 = y


1 2

The section is classified as either Class 1 (Plastic), Class 2 (Compact), or Class 3 (Semi-Compact) as applicable. If a section fails to satisfy the limits for Class 3 (Semi-Compact) sections, the section is classified as Class 4 (Slender). Currently, the program does not check stresses for Slender sections.

Classification of Sections

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Steel Frame Design BS 5950-90

Classification of Sections

Table 1 Limiting Width-Thickness Ratios for Classification of Sections Based on BS 5950-90


Description of Section Ratio Checked b / T (rolled) b/T (welded) Class 1 (Plastic) 8.5 7.5 Class 2 (Compact) 9.5 8.5 For R>0:

79 0.4 + 0.6

Class 3 (Semi-Compact) 15 13
120 and 41 13 (welded) 1 + 1.5 R R 120 and 41 2 (rolled) 1 + 1.5 R R

I-SHAPE

d / t webs (<2)

98

For R= 0: 120, and For R < 0: 120 and 250


(1 + R)2

BOX

d/t webs (2) (rolled) d/t webs (2) (welded) b / T (rolled) b/T (welded) d/t

39 28 26 23 As for I Shapes As for I Shapes 8.5 8.5 8.5 23 8.5 23 40 2

39 28 32 25 As for I Shapes As for I Shapes 9.5 9.5 9.5 23 9.5 23 57 2 Assumed Compact Assumed Compact

39 28 39 28 As for I Shapes As for I Shapes 19 19 15 23 15 23 80 2

CHANNEL T-SHAPE DOUBLE ANGLE (separated) ANGLE PIPE SOLID CIRCLE SOLID RECTANGLE GENERAL

b/T d/t b/T d/t b/t ( b + d) / t b/t ( b + d) / t D/t

Assumed Semi-Compact

Classification of Sections

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Steel Frame Design BS 5950-90

Classification of Sections

EUROCODE 3: Axes Conventions BS 5950: Axes Conventions 2-2 is the cross section axis parallel to the webs, the longer dimensions of tubes, the longer leg of single angles, or the side-by-side legs of double-angles. This is the same as the z-z axis. 3-3 is orthogonal to 2-2. This is the same as the y-y axis.

Figure 1: BS 5950-90 Definition of Geometric Properties

Classification of Sections

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