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Structural Engineering and Mechanics   Volume 58, Number 6, June25 2016, pages 949-966
Effect of higher order terms of Maclaurin expansion in nonlinear analysis of the Bernoulli beam by single finite element
Seyed Mehdi Zahrai, Mohamad Hosein Mortezagholi and Maryam Mirsalehi

Abstract     [Full Text]
    The second order analysis taking place due to non-linear behavior of the structures under the mechanical and geometric factors through implementing exact and approximate methods is an indispensible issue in the analysis of such structures. Among the exact methods is the slope-deflection method that due to its simplicity and efficiency of its relationships has always been in consideration. By solving the differential equations of the modified slope–deflection method in which the effect of axial compressive force is considered, the stiffness matrix including trigonometric entries would be obtained. The complexity of computations with trigonometric functions causes replacement with their Maclaurin expansion. In most cases only the first two terms of this expansion are used but to obtain more accurate results, more elements are needed. In this paper, the effect of utilizing higher order terms of Maclaurin expansion on reducing the number of required elements and attaining more rapid convergence with less error is investigated for the Bernoulli beam with various boundary conditions. The results indicate that when using only one element along the beam length, utilizing higher order terms in Maclaurin expansion would reduce the relative error in determining the critical buckling load and kinematic parameters in the second order analysis.
Key Words
    non-linear behavior; slope-deflection method; axial compressive force; Maclaurin expansion; critical load; kinematic parameters
Seyed Mehdi Zahrai, Mohamad Hosein Mortezagholi: Center of Excellence for Engineering and Management of Civil Infrastructures, School of Civil Engineering, The University of Tehran, P.O. Box 11155-4563, Tehran, Iran
Maryam Mirsalehi: Department of Civil Engineering, Isfahan University of Technology, Isfahan, Iran

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