Effect of Severe Temperatures and Restraint on Instability and Buckling of Elliptical Steel Columns

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This paper presents the findings of an experimental research to investigate the performance of axially restrained elliptical hollow (EHS) steel columns subjected to severe hydrocarbon fire. The test programme involved 12 steel columns presenting 2 oval sections 200 × 100 × 8 mm and 300 × 150 × 8 mm and yielding 2 slenderness λ = 51 and 33. The 1800 mm columns were tested under loading ratios ranging between 0.2 and 0.6 of the ultimate strength determined using EC3 and under axial restraint degree ranging from 0 to 0.16. The obtained results of axial displacements, lateral displacements, measured restraint forces, and high temperatures are presented in the paper. It was found that introducing restraint to the columns with elliptical section produces high restraint forces which reduce the time to lose lateral stability. This is more evident in cases of lower load ratios than the higher load ratios. The numerical study presented in this paper involved building a finite element model to simulate the columns behaviour in fire. The model was validated using the test results obtained from unrestrained and restrained columns fire tests. The model demonstrated good agreement in the prediction of failure times and failure mechanisms of local and overall buckling. The FEM model was then used to conduct a parametric analysis involving factors of slenderness, restraint and loading. The conclusions drawn for this research are presented at the end of the paper.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)41-57
Number of pages17
JournalOpen Journal of Civil Engineering
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished (in print/issue) - 9 Mar 2018


  • Fire
  • steel
  • Elliptical


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