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By: Edgar B.

Manubag, CE, PhD

Reinforced concrete floors usually consist of slabs and beams, which are placed or poured monolithically. In this effect, the beam will have an extra width at the top- (which is usually under compression) called flanges, and the resulting section is called a T -beam. The beam may also be L-shaped if it is located at the end of a slab.

The analysis of T-beams is similar to rectangular beams, but in unlike rectangular beams wherein we always check for maximum steel ratio (max), this limiting ratio is very seldom reached in T -beams because the compression side of the beam is so large which makes the neutral axis so far away from As, and hence one would almost never use an amount of steel greater than max Thus in T -beams where the flange is in compression, it is very often that the steel will yield.

The compression block of a T -beam can fall either within the flange only or partly in the web. If it falls within the flange as shown in Figure 3.1 (a), the rectangular beam formulas (in Chapter 2) apply since the concrete below neutral axis is assumed to be cracked and its shape has no effect on the flexure calculations (other than weight). If however it covers the web as shown in Figure 3,1 (b), the compression concrete no longer consist of a single rectangle and thus the rectangular beam formulas do not apply.

In analysis of beams (whatever shape it is), once the value of c is known, the actual stress in tension steel can be computed using Eq. 3-1. From the strain diagram shown:


One can actually detect (without further computation) when steel will yield once the value of c is known. Note that the strain in concrete is taken as 0.003 and the strain in steel is /s/ Es. For Fy = 415 MPa, the maximum strain Es= 415/200,000 = 0.0021, and for Fy = 276 MPa, Es = 0.0014.


As shown in Figure 3.2 (a), the grade 415 steel will not yield if c/d is greater than 0.59 and will yield if c/d is less than 0.59. The grade 276 steel as shown in Figure 3.2 (b) will yield if c/d is less than 0.7. Since the maximum steel strength usually used in construction is the grade 415 (fy = 415 MPa), we can therefore conclude that if c/d is less than 0.59, the tension steel will yield.


In T-beams where the flange is in compression, the c/d ratio is usually that shown in Figure 3.2 (c), which easily lead us to a conclusion that the steel yields.

If a is less than the slab thickness t, the balanced steel ratio is computed using the Eg. 2 - 11. However, if a is greater than t, the following-formula will be used .

Substituting c for a:

Section of NSCP provides that the minimum steel ratio be 1.4/fy. It also states that in T-beams where the web is in tension, the ratio p shall be computed for this purpose using width of web.

1. In T-beam construction, the flange and web shall be built integrally or otherwise effectively bonded together. 2. The width of slab effective as a T -beam shall not exceed 1/4 of the. span of the beam, and the effective overhanging flange on each side of the web shall not exceed: (a) 8 times the slab thickness, and (b) 1/2 the clear distance to the next web. 3. For beams with slab on one side only, the effective overhanging flange shall not exceed: (a) 1/12 the span length of the beam, (b) 6 times the slab thickness, and (c) 1/2 the clear distance to the next web.

Design Problem, a< t

PROBLEM 3.2 A reinforced concrete T -beam with bf= 813 mm, d = 300 mm, bw = 200 mm, t= 102 mm, fc = 20.7 MPa, and fy = 414 MPa is to be designed to carry a factored moment of 221 kN-m. Determine the required steel area As.