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Introduction

Unlike the previous chapter in this unit we will be dealing with equilibrium of supporting structure. The structures may consist of several sections. They form the supporting structures of bridges, pillars, roofs etc. It is important to have a basic knowledge of this topic as it concerns with the safety and stability of a several important structures. We will be studying about the various internal forces responsible for keeping the structures together. Following figure gives a basic idea of what we are going to study. The given figure is a normal diagram of a book shelf. The second figure shows the role of internal forces in maintaining the system equilibrium. Free body diagram of various components are shown. It is clear from the diagram that the forces of action and reaction between various parts are equal in magnitude and opposite in direction.

Definition of a Truss

Am truss is a network of straight slender members connected at the joints. Members are essentially connected at joints. The every member has force only at extremities. Further for equilibrium the forces in a member reduce to two force member. Thus no moments only two force member. In general trusses are designed to support. Trusses are designed to support weight only in its plane. Therefore trusses in general can be assumed to be 2-dimensional structures. Further in case weight of individual member is to be taken into consideration, half of them are to be distributed at each of the pinned ends. Figure below shows a sample truss. There are nine individual members namely DE, DF, DC, BC, BF, BA, CF, EF, FA. Structure is 2-dimensional structure, supported by pin joints at A and E.

Sometime a member may be given of a shape like: line joining their ends as the line of action of force.

Analysis of a Truss

A truss needs to be stable in all ways for security reasons. Simplest stable truss ABC is shown in figure.

The second diagram depicts that how instable the truss structure is. The truss ABCD can easily be deformed by application of the force F. Trusses constructed by adding triangles such as arms AC and CD to the above stable truss ABC are called simple trusses. No doubt simple trusses are rigid(stable). Further it is not always necessary that rigid trusses will necessary be simple. Let m be no. of members and n be number of joints. For a truss with m<2n-3 deficiency of members, unstable ,fewer unknowns than equation. m= 2n-3 uses all the members, statically determinate m>2n-3 excess member , statically indeterminate, more unknown than equation Method of Joints In the following section we will consider about the various aspects of trusses. Distribution of forces, reactions forces at pins, tension and compression etc. Step 1. Find the reaction at supporting pins using the force and the moment equations. Step 2. Start with a pin, most preferably roller pin,wher there are 2 or less than two unknowns. Step 3. Proceed in a similar way and try to find out force in different members one by one. Step 4. Take care of while labelling forces on the members. Indicate compression and tension clearly. Step 5. Finally produce a completely labelled diagram. Step 6.Try to identify the zero force members. It makes the problem simple. Above shown are the conditions of compression or tension, deceided as per the direction of force applied by the pin joints to the members.

Method of Sections As the name suggests we need to consider an entire section instead of joints. When we need to find the force in all the members, method of joint is preferrable. For finding forces in few of the specific members method of joints is preferrable. Let us consider the same diagram as before.

We had been provided with the given system. We draw a axis aa.

The axis should at max intersect three members. Then we separate the two sections apart. We can select any one of the part. We have just assumed he member to be in tension. We can find the reaction at supports. Now what we have done is divided the whole structure into two parts and taking into consideration various external reactions and member forces acting of one part.Suppose we have to find FEF. It is sufficient to write the equation MB =0(for equlibrium). To find FBC it is sufficient to write the equation of ME =0. Similarly we can also use the equatons Fx =0 ,Fy =0 , for the equlibrium of the section under consideration.

Truss Analysis is one of the most important topics in Statics, which is the first introductory in structural engineering curriculums. Trusses are structures that are widely used in civil engineering applications, such as bridges, steel buildings and roof structures. Trusses also appear in many mechanical and aerospace structures such as cranes, space structures, offshore platforms, and so on. What is a Truss? A truss is a structure usually consisting of straight members that are connected to each other at the two ends of each member. All members of a truss structure are connected together with pin joints, such that for the purpose of the design of these structures we assume the joints cannot carry or resist any moments. All external loads acting on a truss are assumed to be acting only at the joints, and therefore, all members of a truss are two-force members. Why Must We Learn Truss Analysis? First of all, if we plan to design and build a truss structure, such as a roof structure for carrying external loads, we need to find out how much load is carried by each member of the

truss. Secondly, in the case of an existing truss structure, we may need to replace one or a few members. In this case, we need to find the internal forces carried by those few members within the truss structure. In both instances, the objective is to figure out and decide whether the members can sustain the forces or not and what size members and what type of cross sections are required. Types of Truss Analysis There are two major methods of analysis for finding the internal forces in members of a truss; the Method of Joints, which is typically used for the case of creating a truss to handle external loads, and the Method of Sections, which is normally used when dealing modifying the internal members of an existing truss. Both of these methods are based on the assumption that when a structure is in equilibrium, all pieces of the structure are also in equilibrium. Course Structure In this course, I will present a thorough overview of truss structures in the context of static analysis of structures. I will provide you with an easy-to-follow, 7-step process for the Method of Joints and the Method of Sections. Each of the 7 steps are clearly demonstrated in the presentation and sample problems, which I will walk through.

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