Sensitivity Study of Reinforced Concrete Simple Beams


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Title: Sensitivity Study of Reinforced Concrete Simple Beams

Author(s): Robert E. Abendroth and Charles G. Salmon

Publication: Journal Proceedings

Volume: 83

Issue: 5

Appears on pages(s): 764-771

Keywords: beams (supports); costs; economics; optimization; reinforced concrete;structural analysis; structural design.

Date: 9/1/1986

Design of uniformly loaded reinforced concrete beams by conventional methods will not result in a unique solution. To obtain an economical design, with respect to the in-place cost of the construction materials, the principles of reinforced concrete strength design and a nonlinear optimization routine are applied. Parameter studies for simply supported rectangular beams are presented to show the sensitivity of allowable deflection, material strength, and unit material cost variation upon the resulting optimum design. The design variables are the beam width, effective depth, area of tension reinforcement, and area of compression reinforcement. Continuous constraint functions limit the cross section size and areas of reinforcement and describe the shear strength, flexural strength, and deflection of the beam. This paper concludes with guidelines for economical simply supported rectangular beam design that are based upon the results of the parameter sensitivity studies.