# Three moment theorem

Asst. Prof. Hang Thu Vu
hang@civil.uwa.edu.au
Lecture outline
 The purpose of carrying out structural analysis is to
calculate the maximum values of actions (moment,
shear force and axial force) for design member or
check member capacity
 Continuous beam with n spans which subjects to
popular structural member for building
 Continuous beam is indeterminate structure with the
number of unknown reactions is more than the
number of static equilibrium equations (3 equations).
Lecture outline
 A simple technique to solve continuous beam
problem is to use the “Theorem of Three
bending moments”. First, the bending
moment can be constructed straightforward
by applying the theorem. Then, other
unknowns can be found from the beam
equations. For example, the shear force can
be found by differentiating the bending
moment

dx
dM
V =
Lecture outline
 This lecture will detail the theorem and its
applications
 Theorem of Three bending moments
 Applications
 Example 1: 4 spans, patch load
 Example 2: 4 spans, 2-span loaded
 Example 3: 4 spans, loads on alternate spans
 Example 4: Fixed ends

Theorem of Three bending moments
Revision: Structural analysis

 Free body diagram

 Vertical reaction A
y
, equivalent load P. At the
cut of distance x from left end: shear force V,
bending moment M

w (kN/m)
L (m)
M
V
Revision: Structural analysis
 The reaction at A is
 The equivalent point load at a distance x/2 from A is
 Take moment about the cut,

 Force equilibrium for y direction,

 Maximum shear force happens at end
 Maximum bending moment happens at middle
wL A
y
2
1
=
wx P=
2 2
1
0
2 2
1
2
wx
wLx M
x
wx wLx M
÷ =
= + ÷
wx wL V
wx wL V
÷ =
= ÷ + ÷
2
1
0
2
1
wL V
2
1
max
=
8
2
max
wL
M =
Revision: Structural analysis
The area underneath the bending moment
curve
 Integral

 The distance from either support to centroid
of A: x
1
=x
2
=L/2
12 4 6
2 2 3 2 2 2
3 3 3
0
2 3
0
2
0
wL wL wL
x wL x w
dx
wxL wx
Mdx A
L
L L
= + ÷ =
|
|
.
|

\
|
+ ÷ =
|
|
.
|

\
|
+ ÷ = =
} }
 In a similar manner, the bending moment M
and bending moment area A can be obtained
for span subjected to point load

 Distance from left end to centroid of bending
moment area A is
¦
¦
¹
¦
¦
´
¦
s s +
|
.
|

\
|
÷
s s
=
b x a Pa P
L
Pb
x
a x
L
Pbx
M
0
2
Pab
A =
3
1
L a
x
+
=
Three bending moment theorem
 The theorem applies to any two adjacent
spans in a continuous beam. For constant
section, the theorem states

 Where M
A
, M
B
, M
C
are the bending moment
values at three subsequent supports A, B, C
|
|
.
|

\
|
+ ÷ = +
|
|
.
|

\
|
+ +
2 2
2 2
1 1
1 1
2
2
2
2
1
1
1
1
6 2
I L
x A
I L
x A
I
L M
I
L
I
L
M
I
L M
C
B
A
Solution procedure
 For each patch formed by 2 adjacent spans of the
continuous beam, write the theorem equation.
Establish the system of n linear independent
equations for n unknown bending moments at
supports
 Solve the system for support bending moments
 The BM of the continuous beam is constructed
individually for each span by summing the basic
bending moment M
(due to applied load on the
single span) and the linear function fitted through
computed bending moments at 2 corresponding
supports, M
3BMtheorem

Applications
Example 1: UDL on 4 spans
 To generate the bending moment diagrams,
nominate values for UDL w and span length
L. Assume w = -10 kN/m (negative sign to
indicate downward force) and L = 10 m.
Example 1: UDL on 4 spans
 Apply the “Three bending moment theorem”
equation to spans (AB, BC), (BC, CD), (CD, DE).
Substitute L=10, A1 = A2 = -833.33, MA = ME =
0 into 3 equations, we obtain

 For each span , fit a linear function
through the bending moment at its 2 ends.
(
(
(
¸
(

¸

=
(
(
(
¸
(

¸

÷
(
(
(
¸
(

¸

=
(
(
(
¸
(

¸

(
(
(
¸
(

¸

14 . 107
43 . 71
14 . 107
500
500
500
4 1 0
1 4 1
0 1 4
D
C
B
D
C
B
M
M
M
M
M
M
L x s s 0
Example 1: UDL on 4 spans
 Revise mathematics: linear function y(x) fitted
through point 1 (x
1
, y
1
) and point 2 (x
2
, y
2
)
satisfies

1 2
1
1 2
1
x x
x x
y y
y y
÷
÷
=
÷
÷
Example 1: UDL on 4 spans
 Sum the bending moment due to applied load
M
and the fitted function M
3BMtheorem
to obtain
the bending moment M on each span

 Plot the bending moment for the continuous
beam from constructed bending moment M in
the above table
Example 1: UDL on 4 spans
UDL over 4 equal spans
-100
-50
0
50
100
150
0 5 10 15 20 25 30 35 40
Distance (m)
B
e
n
d
i
n
g

m
o
m
e
n
t

M

(
k
N
.
m
)
Example 2: UDL on 2 spans

 Having L=10;
 spans (AB, BC): A1 = A2 = -833.33,
 spans (BC, CD): A1 = -833.33, A2 =0,
 spans (CD, DE): A1 = A2 = 0;
 M
A
= M
E
= 0.
 Hence,
Example 2: UDL on 2 spans

 Fitting the linear function through the bending
moment data at ends for each span
(
(
(
¸
(

¸

÷
=
(
(
(
¸
(

¸

÷
(
(
(
¸
(

¸

=
(
(
(
¸
(

¸

(
(
(
¸
(

¸

93 . 8
714 . 35
07 . 116
0
250
500
4 1 0
1 4 1
0 1 4
D
C
B
D
C
B
M
M
M
M
M
M
Example 2: UDL on 2 spans
 M = M
+ M
3BMtheorem

Example 2: UDL on 2 spans
-100
-50
0
50
100
150
0 5 10 15 20 25 30 35 40
Distance (m)
B
e
n
d
i
n
g

m
o
m
e
n
t

M

(
k
N
.
m
)
Example 3: Load on alternate spans

 Having L=10;
 spans (AB, BC): A1 = -833.33, A2 =0;
 spans (BC, CD): A1 =0, A2 = -833.33;
 spans (CD, DE): A1 = -833.33, A2 =0;
 MA = ME = 0.
 Hence,
Example 3: Load on alternate spans

 Fitting the linear function through the bending
moment data at ends for each span

(
(
(
¸
(

¸

=
(
(
(
¸
(

¸

÷
(
(
(
¸
(

¸

=
(
(
(
¸
(

¸

(
(
(
¸
(

¸

571 . 53
714 . 35
571 . 53
250
250
250
4 1 0
1 4 1
0 1 4
D
C
B
D
C
B
M
M
M
M
M
M
Example 3: Load on alternate spans
 M = M
+ M
3BMtheorem

Example 3: Load on alternate spans
-120
-100
-80
-60
-40
-20
0
20
40
60
80
0 5 10 15 20 25 30 35 40
Distance (m)
B
e
n
d
i
n
g

m
o
m
e
n
t

M

(
k
N
.
m
)
Example 4: Continuous beam with fixed
ends
 For a continuous beam of (n) spans, (n-1) equations
can be generated from the three moment theorem.
The total of supports on the beam are (n+1).
 If 2 end supports are pins, the number of unknown
BMs at supports is (n-1). We can solve the system
of (n-1) equations for these (n-1) BMs as detailed in
previous examples
 For continuous beam with one fixed end, the
number of unknown BMs is (n). For continuous
beam with two fixed ends, the number of unknown
BMs is (n+1). We can not solve for these unknown
BMs as the number of equations is smaller than the
number of unknowns.
Example 4: Continuous beam with fixed
ends
 Consider this example of 2-span continuous
beam ABC of const. cross section, built in
fixed ends at A and C, supported at B

 One equation for 3 unknowns M
A
, M
B
, M
C
Example 4: Continuous beam with fixed
ends
 Effect of a fixed end is similar to placing a
mirroring span at the wall end

 B1 is mirror of B over A, B2 is mirror of B
over C. Have M
B1
= M
B
, M
B2
= M
B
Example 4: Continuous beam with fixed
ends
 With , from the left hand side,
having
 A
B
1
A
= -157.5, A
AB
= -157.5,
 A
BC
= -125, A
CB
2
= -125
 Consider spans (B
1
A, AB)
12
3
wL
A ÷ =
( )
) 1 . ( 5 . 157 2
3
5 . 1 5 . 157
3
5 . 1 5 . 157
6 3 3 3 2 3
1
1
Eq M M
M M
M M M
B A
B B
B A B
= + × ÷
=
|
.
|

\
|
× ÷
+
× ÷
× ÷ = × + + × × + ×
Example 4: Continuous beam with fixed
ends
 Consider spans (AB, BC)

 Consider spans (BC, CB
2
)
( )
) 2 . ( 5 . 282 17 . 1 33 . 4
5 . 3
75 . 1 125
3
5 . 1 5 . 157
6 3 3 3 2 3
1
Eq M M M
M M M
C B A
B A B
= × + × + ÷
|
.
|

\
|
× ÷
+
× ÷
× ÷ = × + + × × + ×
( )
) 3 . ( 1 . 107 2
5 . 3
75 . 1 125
5 . 3
75 . 1 125
6 5 . 3 5 . 3 5 . 3 2 5 . 3
2
2
Eq M M
M M
M M M
C B
B B
B C B
= × + ÷
=
|
.
|

\
|
× ÷
+
× ÷
× ÷ = × + + × × + ×
Example 4: Continuous beam with fixed
ends
 From Eqs. (1), (2), (3), the bending moments at A,
B, C are found

 After the bending moments at all supports are
known, the bending moment is recovered for each
span in the usual manner. The BMD for the
continuous beam can then be plotted.
¦
)
¦
`
¹
¦
¹
¦
´
¦
=
¦
)
¦
`
¹
¦
¹
¦
´
¦
84 . 31
47 . 43
01 . 57
C
B
A
M
M
M
Next lecture
 Design of tension member
 AS4100:1998, Section 7 and related parts in
Section 6 and Section 9

Lecture outline

The purpose of carrying out structural analysis is to calculate the maximum values of actions (moment, shear force and axial force) for design member or check member capacity Continuous beam with n spans which subjects to various loading configurations is one of most popular structural member for building Continuous beam is indeterminate structure with the number of unknown reactions is more than the number of static equilibrium equations (3 equations).

Lecture outline

A simple technique to solve continuous beam problem is to use the “Theorem of Three bending moments”. First, the bending moment can be constructed straightforward by applying the theorem. Then, other unknowns can be found from the beam equations. For example, the shear force can be found by differentiating the bending moment dM

V

dx

2-span loaded Example 3: 4 spans. loads on alternate spans Example 4: Fixed ends . patch load Example 2: 4 spans.Lecture outline  This lecture will detail the theorem and its applications   Theorem of Three bending moments Applications     Example 1: 4 spans.

Theorem of Three bending moments .

At the cut of distance x from left end: shear force V. bending moment M .Revision: Structural analysis w (kN/m) L (m)  Free body diagram V M  Vertical reaction Ay. equivalent load P.

2 1 V  wL  wx 2 1 Vmax  wL Maximum shear force happens at end 2 wL2 Maximum bending moment happens at middle M m ax  8 .Revision: Structural analysis    1 The reaction at A is Ay  wL 2 The equivalent point load at a distance x/2 from A is Take moment about the cut. M  1 wLx  wx x  0 P  wx    2 2 1 wx 2 M  wLx  2 2 1  V  wL  wx  0 Force equilibrium for y direction.

Revision: Structural analysis .

The area underneath the bending moment curve  Integral L L 2 3 2 L  wx  wx wxL  wL x  A   Mdx      2  2 dx   2 3  2 2       0 0 0 wL3 wL3 wL3    6 4 12  The distance from either support to centroid of A: x1=x2=L/2 .

the bending moment M and bending moment area A can be obtained for span subjected to point load .Point load  In a similar manner.

Point load  Pbx 0 xa  L  M   x  Pb  P   Pa a  x  b     L   Pab A 2  Distance from left end to centroid of bending moment area A is aL x1  3 .

B. For constant section. MB.Three bending moment theorem  The theorem applies to any two adjacent spans in a continuous beam. C . the theorem states  L1 L2  M C L2  A1 x1 A2 x2  M A L1  2M B      6 I  LI  L I   I1 I2  I2 2 2   1  1 1  Where MA. MC are the bending moment values at three subsequent supports A.

M3BMtheorem . Establish the system of n linear independent equations for n unknown bending moments at supports Solve the system for support bending moments The BM of the continuous beam is constructed individually for each span by summing the basic bending moment MLoad (due to applied load on the single span) and the linear function fitted through computed bending moments at 2 corresponding supports.Solution procedure    For each patch formed by 2 adjacent spans of the continuous beam. write the theorem equation.

Applications .

Assume w = -10 kN/m (negative sign to indicate downward force) and L = 10 m. nominate values for UDL w and span length L. .Example 1: UDL on 4 spans  To generate the bending moment diagrams.

14           For each span 0  x  L . (BC.14 1 4 1  M   500   M    71.33. CD). MA = ME = 0 into 3 equations. A1 = A2 = -833. Substitute L=10. (CD. . DE). we obtain 4 1 0  M B  500  M B  107.Example 1: UDL on 4 spans  Apply the “Three bending moment theorem” equation to spans (AB.43     C    C   0 1 4  M D  500  M D  107. fit a linear function through the bending moment at its 2 ends. BC).

Example 1: UDL on 4 spans  Revise mathematics: linear function y(x) fitted through point 1 (x1. y2) satisfies y  y1 x  x1  y 2  y1 x2  x1 . y1) and point 2 (x2.

Example 1: UDL on 4 spans  Sum the bending moment due to applied load MLoad and the fitted function M3BMtheorem to obtain the bending moment M on each span  Plot the bending moment for the continuous beam from constructed bending moment M in the above table .

m) 50 0 0 5 10 15 20 25 30 35 40 -50 -100 Distance (m) .Example 1: UDL on 4 spans UDL over 4 equal spans 150 100 Bending moment M (kN.

Example 2: UDL on 2 spans       Having L=10. Hence. spans (BC. DE): A1 = A2 = 0. MA = ME = 0. spans (AB.33. spans (CD. A2 =0.33. . CD): A1 = -833. BC): A1 = A2 = -833.

714    C    C   0 1 4  M D   0   M D    8.93            Fitting the linear function through the bending moment data at ends for each span .07  1 4 1  M   250   M   35.Example 2: UDL on 2 spans 4 1 0  M B  500  M B  116.

Example 2: UDL on 2 spans  M = MLoad + M3BMtheorem .

Example 2: UDL on 2 spans UDL on 2 adjacent spans 150 100 Bending moment M (kN.m) 50 0 0 5 10 15 20 25 30 35 40 -50 -100 Distance (m) .

. spans (BC.Example 3: Load on alternate spans       Having L=10.33. Hence. spans (CD.33. DE): A1 = -833. A2 =0. CD): A1 =0.33. A2 =0. A2 = -833. BC): A1 = -833. spans (AB. MA = ME = 0.

Example 3: Load on alternate spans 4 1 0  M B  250  M B   53.571 1 4 1  M   250   M   35.571           Fitting the linear function through the bending moment data at ends for each span .714    C    C   0 1 4  M D  250  M D   53.

Example 3: Load on alternate spans  M = MLoad + M3BMtheorem .

m) 20 0 0 -20 -40 -60 -80 -100 -120 5 10 15 20 25 30 35 40 Distance (m) .Example 3: Load on alternate spans UDL loaded on alternate spans 80 60 40 Bending moment M (kN.

We can solve the system of (n-1) equations for these (n-1) BMs as detailed in previous examples For continuous beam with one fixed end. For continuous beam with two fixed ends. the number of unknown BMs is (n+1). We can not solve for these unknown BMs as the number of equations is smaller than the number of unknowns. the number of unknown BMs at supports is (n-1). The total of supports on the beam are (n+1). If 2 end supports are pins. (n-1) equations can be generated from the three moment theorem.Example 4: Continuous beam with fixed ends    For a continuous beam of (n) spans. the number of unknown BMs is (n). .

MC . supported at B  One equation for 3 unknowns MA. built in fixed ends at A and C.Example 4: Continuous beam with fixed ends  Consider this example of 2-span continuous beam ABC of const. cross section. MB.

MB2= MB . B2 is mirror of B over C.Example 4: Continuous beam with fixed ends  Effect of a fixed end is similar to placing a mirroring span at the wall end  B1 is mirror of B over A. Have MB1= MB.

5 ( Eq.5  1.5  157. ACB = -125 2  Consider spans (B1A. 12 having   AB A = -157.5  M B1  3  2  M A  3  3  M B  3  6     3 3   M B1  M B  2  M A  M B  157. 1 ABC = -125.5  1. from the left hand side.5.1) . AAB = -157.Example 4: Continuous beam with fixed ends  wL3 With A   .5. AB)   157.

2)    125  1.1 ( Eq.Example 4: Continuous beam with fixed ends  Consider spans (AB.5   M B  M B2  M B  2  M C  107. BC)   157.5  6     3.75  M B  3.5  M B2  3.5  1.33  M B  1.5  2  M C  3.75  M B1  3  2  M A  3  3  M B  3  6     3 3.5 3.3) Consider spans (BC.5 ( Eq.5  3.5  125  1.17  M C  282. CB2) .5    M A  4.75  125  1.

84  C    After the bending moments at all supports are known. B. the bending moment is recovered for each span in the usual manner.47  M  31. The BMD for the continuous beam can then be plotted. (2). the bending moments at A.01      M B   43.Example 4: Continuous beam with fixed ends  From Eqs. C are found  M A   57. . (3). (1).

Section 7 and related parts in Section 6 and Section 9 .Next lecture   Design of tension member Reading:  AS4100:1998.

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2910/ 03/8 438/0785..38     L    L   L          F   L       6     L   L     L    L     .38     L     L   L   L     L    L  F     L     L      6   L     438/0785.2504393:4:8-0.

70 343 90-03/3242039870..3903-054990/  .3307 %014790 .4.4393:4:8-0.2504393:4:8-0..9.2910/ 03/8 74268       90-03/32420398.9   ..8:554798.070/1470.2.7014:3/            190790-03/32420398.3390:8:. 85.2.

7983 \$0.943./3 \$  \$0.3/\$0.943 .90/5.3/70.090.943.9:70 08341903843202-07 #0.