Continuing Education

The Elastic and Inelastic Post-Buckling Behavior of Steel Plate Shear Wall Web Plates and their Interaction with Vertical Boundary Elements

The Special Plate Shear Wall, or SPSW, is a building lateral system that relies primarily on the in-plane post-buckling strength and stiffness of thin steel plates. SPSWs have been utilized as a building lateral system since the 1960’s. Many numerical and experimental studies have been undertaken to investigate the behavior of the complete SPSW system, including the interaction of the web plates and the surrounding boundary frame, but few studies have attempted to isolate the behavior of the steel web plate alone. As a thin metal plate is loaded in shear beyond its critical buckling stress, the majority of the applied load is resisted by tension-field action. The conventional assumption is that the compressive stress remains at the critical stress magnitude after the plate buckles. This critical stress is usually very low for a normally proportioned SPSW, and is a very small fraction of the plate yield stress. Consequently its contribution is typically ignored. This paper presents the results of continuum shell element analyses on SPSW sub-assemblies loaded in shear and bending. The results suggest that after buckling the average compressive stress may significantly exceed the critical buckling stress, and may exceed 20% of the simultaneous average principal tensile stress. A review of past experimental results indicate that the flexural demands on the vertical boundary elements is often lower than that obtained using the tension-only strip element model - the conventional design approach. A possible explanation is the presence of principal compressive stresses that act concurrently with the tension field. The reduced boundary member demand is also observed in the shell element models.

  • Date: 4/18/2012 - 4/21/2012
  • PDH Credits: 0


David J. Webster; J.W. Berman; L.N. Lowes; University of Washington; Seattle; WA

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