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In the problem of settlement of bearing-wall structures, the strength of the wall is a main factor in defining a limit to the allowable settlement. Walls with openings are more susceptible to settlement problems. In these walls, cracks will start to develop in the ‘beams’ (between openings). Hence, the strength of a settling wall is a function of the flexural strength of its beams against in-plane bending.
S.A. Abu-El-Magd and I.A. MacLeod
In previous work an economical, yet rigorous, method was developed for analysing the complete collapse behaviour of steel plates subjected to in-plane compressive loading. The opportunity is now taken to present the results of applying this method to the analysis of 960 different simply-supported rectangular plates primarily under longitudinal compression. With regard to stiffened panels, each case analysed is representative of a rectangular plate element between longitudinal stiffeners. The results indicate the aspect ratio of buckling a/b to have an important effect, in addition to the effects of plate slenderness, initial out-of-flatness, and residual welding stress. Various types of plate panel are analysed depending on their positions within the stiffened panel as a whole. For certain types the boundary conditions give rise to secondary in-plane transverse loadings. There is a similarity of behaviour between the various types which supports the design simplification of treating them all in the same way. The results support the class P and Q plate strength design curves proposed previously for stiffened panels and thin-walled box columns.