CSection & CBeam for teaching
A 3D vision for beams to help walled profile analysis and introduce the Mechanics of a composite part

The classical beam theory presentation is based on several assumptions that practically reduce the beam to a one dimensional (1D) body; this approach is simple but insufficient to describe the spatial (3D) mechanical behavior of a thin/thick walled profile or a composite and anisotropic beam. Yet, nowadays, to satisfy weight and cost requirements, the trend in beam design is moving towards thin and composite profiles. Thus, it is time in beam teaching to give the analysis of such structures its rightful place, even if the task is more difficult.

CSection & CBeam offer a new 3D vision for sections and beams that allows a consistent mechanical analysis of a thin walled profile or a composite beam. A beam is here considered as a 3D "slim" body whose cross-section can warp in and out-of its plane. For the composite case, the computations account for the spatial arrangement of the materials and their anisotropy and the results correctly describe the 3D displacement and give the 3D punctual state of stress in each material.

Easy to use, CSection & CBeam may constitute an excellent teaching aid to efficiently reach two goals : A detailed and realistic presentation of the mechanical behavior of thin/thick walled profile as well as a first and consistent introduction to the analysis of a composite part.

CSection & CBeam for the mechanical analysis of walled profiles

Thin/thick walled profiles are commonly used in many engineering applications. The correct mechanical analysis of an arbitrary thin/thick walled section is fundamental in the design of profiles. CSection and CBeam can effectively contribute to this task. They allow, regardless of the shape and the thickness contour of the section, to obtain or display :

  • The shear distribution due to the shear forces or the torsional moment.
  • The out-of plane warping of the section
  • The influence of the section asymmetry on the flexural-torsional coupling or the position of the shear center.
  • The stiffness related to the shear forces, and values of the reduced areas.
  • The torsional stiffness and the warping stiffness for the non-uniform torsion.

These results can be systematically and quickly obtained using CSection and CBeam; they constitute a truly aid to understand the mechanical behavior of walled sections profiles.

CSection & CBeam to introduce the mechanics of composite materials or structures

The use of materials of different strength and behavior is the basis in composite design. The arrangements of the materials and their anisotropy have a significant influence on the mechanical behavior of a composite part and in particular on the distribution of the stresses between the materials. It is therefore essential, in the calculation of a composite part, to access the state of stress in each one of the materials.

Because CSection & CBeam are able to obtain such results for any composite beam, they can contribute through the analysis of such structure to help introduce the mechanics of a composite material or structure.