Numerical investigation and design of cold-formed steel built-up open section columns with longitudinal stiffeners

J.-H. Zhang, Ben Young

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

94 Citations (Scopus)


© 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.A built-up I-section with longitudinal stiffeners is expected to have better performance to resist against local and distortional buckling compared to conventional built-up I-section by simply connecting two plain channels back-to-back. This paper presents a non-linear finite element analysis to investigate the behaviour of cold-formed steel built-up open section columns with edge and web stiffeners. A finite element model was firstly developed and verified against tests of cold-formed steel built-up compression members, in which the initial geometric imperfections and material properties of the test specimens were included. Secondly, the verified finite element model was used for an extensive parametric study of fixed-ended cold-formed steel built-up open section columns. The parametric study was designed to investigate the effect of edge and web stiffeners in the built-up open sections. The finite element results together with the test results were compared with the design predictions calculated from the current design rules in the North American Specification and the Australian/New Zealand Standard. Furthermore, design rules of the current direct strength method were modified. It is shown that the design strengths predicted by the modified direct strength method are generally in good agreement with the ultimate loads of the built-up open section columns. In addition, the current design rules and the modified direct strength method were evaluated by reliability analysis.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)178-191
Number of pages14
JournalThin-Walled Structures
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • Bucking
  • Built-up sections
  • Cold-formed steel
  • Columns
  • Distortional buckling
  • Local buckling

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Building and Construction
  • Mechanical Engineering

Cite this