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Torsion of solid and hollow shafts - Polar Moment of Inertia of an Area

Shear Stress in the Shaft


When a shaft is subjected to a torque or twisting, a shearing stress is produced in the shaft. The shear stress varies from zero in
the axis to a maximum at the outside surface of the shaft.
The shear stress in a solid circular shaft in a given position can be expressed as:
=Tr/J

(1)

where
= shear stress (MPa, psi)
T = twisting moment (Nmm, in lb)
r = distance from center to stressed surface in the given position (mm, in)
J = Polar Moment of Inertia of an Area (mm4, in4)
Note

the "Polar Moment of Inertia of an Area" is a measure of a beam's ability to resist torsion. The "Polar Moment of Inertia" is
defined with respect to an axis perpendicular to the area considered. It is analogous to the "Area Moment of Inertia" which characterizes a beam's ability to resist bending - required to predict deflection and stress in a beam.

"Polar Moment of Inertia of an Area" is also called "Polar Moment of Inertia", "Second Moment of Area", "Area Moment of Inertia",
"Polar Moment of Area" or "Second Area Moment".
Circular Shaft and Maximum Moment
Maximum moment in a circular shaft can be expressed as:
Tmax = max J / R

(2)

where
Tmax = maximum twisting moment (Nmm, in lb)
max = maximum shear stress (MPa, psi)
R = radius of shaft (mm, in)
Combining (2) and (3) for a solid shaft
Tmax = ( / 16) max D3

(2b)

Combining (2) and (3b) for a hollow shaft


Tmax = ( / 16) max (D4 - d4) / D

(2c)

Circular Shaft and Polar Moment of Inertia


Polar Moment of Inertia of a circular solid shaft can be expressed as
J = R4 / 2

= (D / 2)4 / 2
= D4 / 32

(3)

where
D = shaft outside diameter (mm, in)
Polar Moment of Inertia of a circular hollow shaft can be expressed as
J = (D4 - d4) / 32

(3b)

where
d = shaft inside diameter

(mm, in)

Diameter of a Solid Shaft


Diameter of a solid shaft can calculated by the formula
D = 1.72 (Tmax / max)1/3

(4)

Torsional Deflection of Shaft


The angular deflection of a torsion shaft can be expressed as
= L T / (J G)

(5)

where
= angular shaft deflection (radians)
L = length of shaft (mm, in)
G = modulus of rigidity (Mpa, psi)

The angular deflection of a torsion solid shaft can be expressed as


= 32 L T / (G D4)

(5a)

The angular deflection of a torsion hollow shaft can be expressed as


= 32 L T / (G (D4- d4))

(5b)

The angle in degrees can be achieved by multiplying the angle in radians with 180 /
Solid shaft ( replaced)
degrees 584 L T / (G D4)

(6a)

Hollow shaft ( replaced)


degrees 584 L T / (G (D4- d4)

(6b)

Torsion Resisting Moments of Shafts of Various Cross Sections

Shaft Cross Section Area

Maximum Torsional
Resisting Moment
- Tmax (Nm, in lb)

Solid Cylinder Shaft

( / 16) max D3

Hollow Cylinder Shaft

( / 16) max (D4 - d4) / D

Ellipse Shaft

( / 16) max b2 h

Nomenclature

h = "height" of shaft
b = "width" of shaft
h>b

Shaft Cross Section Area

Maximum Torsional
Resisting Moment
- Tmax (Nm, in lb)

Nomenclature

Rectangle Shaft

(2 / 9) max b2 h

h>b

Square Shaft

(2 / 9) max b3

Triangle Shaft

(1 / 20) max b3

b = length of triangle side

Hexagon Shaft

1.09 max b3

b = length of hexagon side

Example - Shear Stress and Angular Deflection in a Solid Cylinder


A moment of 1000 Nm is acting on a solid cylinder shaft with diameter 50 mm and length 1 m. The shaft is made in steel
with modulus of rigidity 79 GPa (79 109 Pa).
Maximum shear stress can be calculated as
max = T r / J
= T (D / 2) / ( D4 / 32)
= (1000 Nm) ((0.05 m) / 2) / ( (0.05 m)4 / 32)
= 40.8 MPa
The angular deflection of the shaft can be calculated as
= L T / (J G)
= L T / (( D4 / 32) G)

= (1 m) (1000 Nm) / (( (0.05 m)4 / 32) (79 109 Pa))


= 0.021 (radians)
= 1.2 o
Example - Shear Stress and Angular Deflection in a Hollow Cylinder
A moment of 1000 Nm is acting on a hollow cylinder shaft with outer diameter 50 mm, inner diameter 30 mm and length 1 m. The
shaft is made in steel with modulus of rigidity 79 GPa (79 109 Pa).
Maximum shear stress can be calculated as
max = T r / J
= T (D / 2) / ( (D4 - d4) / 32)
= (1000 Nm) ((0.05 m) / 2) / ( ((0.05 m)4 - (0.03 m)4) / 32)
= 46.8 MPa
The angular deflection of the shaft can be calculated as
= L T / (J G)
= L T / (( D4 / 32) G)
= (1 m) (1000 Nm) / (( ((0.05 m)4 - (0.03 m)4) / 32) (79 109 Pa))
= 0.023 (radians)
= 1.4 o