11-18-2010, 11:09 AM

SP-265-15 Structural Concrete Beam Shear - Still a Riddle ?

Synopsis: The paper reviews the application of classical plasticity theory to shear

failure of structural concrete beams. The resistance of concrete to shearing deforma-

tions is described by the modified Coulomb failure criterion. For beams with shear

reinforcement, this leads to an upper bound solution based on yield lines minimizing

the combined work of yielding stirrups and cracking concrete, the coinciding lower

bound solution corresponding to an inclined compression field (the web-crushing

criterion). For beams without shear reinforcement, the optimal failure mechanism is

a single yield line (straight or hyperbolic) from load to support, the coinciding lower

bound solution corresponding to a compressive strut between the load and support

platens. The predicted failure mechanisms and ultimate loads are compared with

experimental evidence, and it is concluded that the plasticity approach goes a long

way toward solving the riddle of shear failure.

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