Semi-analytical formulation for stainless steel tubular T-joints chord sidewall failure

Mateus M. Nogueira, Luciano R.O. de Lima, Pedro C.G. Pedro, Ben Young

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


Tubular profiles have become increasingly prominent in civil engineering due to their numerous benefits. They have a more economical geometry, a smaller surface area favouring protection against corrosion, and are light when compared to other profiles with the same resistance. Furthermore, they have high load carrying capacities under compression, torsion, bending and combined loads. They are commonly used as columns, trusses, and bracing elements for these reasons. When tubular profiles are used, it is necessary to assess the joint resistance, considering they have different failure modes. Several studies have been carried out on carbon steel tubular joints, but limited investigation satisfactorily addresses stainless steel tubular joints. The present work aims to develop a semi-analytical formulation to predict the strengths of axially loaded chord stainless steel tubular T-joints. Therefore, the contribution of chord side walls was determined, followed by using the Ritz energy principle in the analyses. Numerical models were developed and calibrated with experiments to validate the proposed formulae. The validated numerical models were also used in a parametric study that helped understand the joint's behaviour when subjected to chord axial forces. For cases where the chord is under compression, a reduction in the ultimate joint capacity was observed. On the other hand, in tensioned chord cases, a small increase in the joint resistance was observed up to a certain level, from which their resistance started to be reduced. A correction factor was developed based on the magnitude of chord load and sidewall slenderness. Finally, the predictions obtained from the proposed method were compared to the numerical, main current standards and literature results. These comparisons indicated that the proposed method and the NBR 16239 Brazilian design code rendered satisfactory results, while the other results were, in general, very conservative.

Original languageEnglish
Article number109505
JournalThin-Walled Structures
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2022


  • Chord load
  • Stainless steel
  • T-joints
  • Tubular connections
  • Web Crippling

ASJC Scopus subject areas

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


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