Understanding Structures: An Introduction to Structural Analysis, 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

Understanding Structures

An Introduction to Structural Analysis, 1st Edition

By Mete A. Sozen, Toshikatsu Ichinose

CRC Press

368 pages | 588 B/W Illus.

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Hardback: 9781420068610
pub: 2008-07-10
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pub: 2018-10-03
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Before structural mechanics became the common language of structural engineers, buildings were built based on observed behavior, with every new solution incurring high levels of risk. Today, the pendulum has swung in the other direction. The web of structural mechanics is so finely woven that it hides the role of experience in design, again leading to high levels of risk.

Understanding Structures brings the art and science of structures into the environment of a computer game.  The book imparts a basic understanding of how buildings and bridges resist gravity, wind, and earthquake loads. Its interactive presentation of topics spans elementary concepts of force in trusses to bending of beams and the response of multistory, multi-bay frames.

Formulate Graphical and Quantitative Solutions with GOYA

The companion software, GOYA, runs easily on any java-enabled system. This interactive learning environment allows engineers to obtain quick and instructive graphical and quantitative solutions to many problems in structures.

Simulation is critical to the design and construction of safe structures. Using GOYA and the tools within Understanding Structures, engineers can enhance their overall understanding of structure response as well as expedite the process of safe structure design.

Table of Contents


What is a Truss?

Bar in Tension or Compression

Symmetrical Truss with Two Elements of Equal Size at 90°

Symmetrical Truss with Two Elements at Various Orientations

Unsymmetrical Truss with Two Elements

Truss with Three Members

Hands-on Approach to Truss Design

Analysis of Statically Determinate Trusses

Stable Trusses

Building a Truss


Moments and Deflections in Cantilever Beams

What is a Bending Moment?

What is a Shear Force?

What is a Distributed Load?

What is a Couple?

The Effects of Moment on Stresses in a Beam

The Effects of Moment on Strains in a Beam

Deformation of a Beam—Spring Model

Deformation of a Beam—Continuously Deformable Model

Moment and Deflections in Simply Supported Beams

The Effect of a Concentrated Load on Shear, Moment, and Deflection

The Effect of Several Concentrated Loads on Shear, Moment, and  Deflection

Similarities between Beam and Truss Response

Construction and Test of a Timber Beam

Bending and Shear Stresses

First Moment

Second Moment and Section Modulus

Construction and Test of a Styrofoam Beam

Shear Stress


Introductory Concepts

A Simple Bent

A Portal Frame

Statically Indeterminate Frame

Multistory Frame

Three-Hinged Frame


Simple Models

Continuously Deformable Model


List of Symbols


Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings: