Non-conservative stability of multi-step non-uniform columns

Research output: Journal Publications and ReviewsRGC 21 - Publication in refereed journalpeer-review

6 Scopus Citations
View graph of relations



Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2387-2399
Journal / PublicationInternational Journal of Solids and Structures
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - 30 Apr 2002


The non-conservative stability of non-uniform columns under the combined action of concentrated and variably distributed forces is solved analytically. Two types of follower force system are considered: (i) concentrated follower forces and variably distributed follower forces, (ii) concentrated follower forces and variably distributed conservative forces. The exact solutions for stability of four kinds of one-step non-uniform columns subjected to the two types of follower force system are derived for the first time. Then a new exact approach, which combines the exact solutions of one-step columns and the transfer matrix method, is presented for the non-conservative stability analysis of multi-step non-uniform columns. The advantage of the proposed method is that the resulting eigenvalue equation for a multi-step non-uniform column with any kinds of two end support configurations, an arbitrary number of spring supports and concentrated masses can be conveniently determined from a second order determinant. The decrease in the determinant order, as compared with previously developed procedures, leads to significant savings in the computational effort. A numerical example shows that the results obtained from the proposed method are in good agreement with those determined from the finite element method (FEM), but the proposed method takes less computational time than FEM. © 2002 Elsevier Science Ltd. All rights reserved.

Research Area(s)

  • Buckling, Column, Exact solution, Non-conservative system, Stability, Transfer matrix method