Chapter 2.2 Simply Supported Beams
Every student of structural engineering is introduced to the most basic, but perhaps most useful of components: the simply supported beam. It starts with a reintroduction of the basic bending, shear and deflections. It is followed by an anecdote by Galileo to shows how easily intuition can fail us; going back to the simply supported solution can lead to safer assumptions of behaviour. Finally some useful approximations are recorded of benefit to the engineer engaged in a more sophisticated analysis.
It transpired that this was not such an excellent idea. Far from reducing the breakage of stored columns it actually resulted in a number of columns breaking their backs over the central support. The simply supported column had now become a statically indeterminate continuous system. ’
The following figure is available to download in MS Excel format.