Dr J. W. Dougill (F) (Director of Engineering, IStructE)
We have these distributions of normal contact stress across the width of the footing, and you say that ‘of course, it is zero at the edge’. I am a little puzzled about this, although I may have misunderstood. Certainly, if the behaviour were not elastic, there is not any reason why it should be zero at the edge. Indeed, if you had a singularity you would need it to be zero at the edge. Is there some other overriding reason why this contact stress should be zero?