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PROBLEM STATEMENT The connecting rod does this important task of converting

reciprocating motion of the piston into rotary motion of the

crankshaft. It consists of an upper forked section which fits on
the crosshead bearings while the lower part fits on the crankpin
With this sort of arrangement there is heavy axial
loading on the connecting rod which reaches its peak at
the top dead center because the gas pressure and the
inertial forces add to increase the overall force. Other
abnormal working conditions such as piston seizure and
momentary increase in peak pressure can also result in
severe increase in stress on the con-rod and it could fail
due to buckling due to these forces.
Buckling: Bending of a sheet, plate, or column supporting a
compressive load.

SOLUTIONThere are two practical buckling modes of connecting rod. One mode called side
buckling occurs in the direction parallel to the rotational axis of the connecting rod.
The other mode called front-rear buckling occurs in the direction perpendicular to
side buckling. figure below shows the design parameters in the connecting rod and
its shank cross-section. The specific connecting rod used in the real engine will be
selected as the specimen. When we refer to figure, front-rear buckling is defined as
the shape mode about x-axis and the side buckling is defined as the shape mode
about y-axis. The elastic buckling stress for theses modes can be represented as the
design parameters of shank: effective length L, radius of gyration r and the buckling
constant K. The buckling constant (K) is a dimensionless value reflecting the
boundary conditions. The Euler formula can be expressed as follows: equation(1)

where E is the elastic modulus, Kx is 0.5 for a

fixedfixed joint and Ky is the unity for a pinedpined joint.

E = Youngs modulus
Ixx = area moment of inertia for front-rear buckling
Iyy = area moment of inertia for side buckling
Kx = buckling factor for front-rear buckling
Ky = buckling factor for side buckling
L = effective length
P = compressive load

rx=Ixx/AIxx/A =

radius of gyration for front-rear buckling

ry=Iyy/AIyy/A =

radius of gyration for side buckling

SF = safety factor
Se = endurance limit

Sx = L/rx = slenderness ratio for front-rear buckling

Sy = L/ry = slenderness ratio side buckling
= compressive stress
a = stress amplitude
cr = critical buckling stress

ecr = elastic critical buckling stress (Euler formula)

Pcr = plastic critical buckling stress
FEMcr = elastic critical buckling stress (FEM)
m = mean stress
y = yield strength

The Rankine
formula is defined
as the harmonic
mean of the
elastic term (Euler
formula, ecr) and
the plastic term
strength, pcr) as
Equation :



The elastic term (Euler equation) of the classical formula used in the buckling criterion of
connecting rod is valid when the column is an ideal slender column with uniform crosssection under specific boundary conditions such as pinedpined, fixedfixed and pinedfixed
joints. The actual connecting rod is however incompatible with the assumptions of the Euler
formula in three aspects. First, the shank of connecting rod has non-uniform cross-sections
along the length. Secondly, the real buckling constant K is different from the classical
constant because both ends of connecting rod are connected with the pin and crank shaft
which have relatively big radii. Thirdly, it is difficult to define the effective length of connecting

rod for front-rear buckling. Consequently, an enhanced formula is needed in the shape
design of connecting rod shank.