Discrete and Continuous Treatment of Local Buckling in Stainless Steel Elements

This paper by L Gardner and M Theofanous was published in the Journal of Constructional Steel Research, Volume 64 Issue 11, November 2008. It is a study summarising the new test data for stainless steel cross sections. It covers cold formed and welded plated elements together with CHS. Existing design guidance is based on limited test data and is therefore conservative, leading to strict slenderness limits. Following the analysis of the new test data, new slenderness limits for all loading conditions are proposed and statistically validated. Additionally a new approach to the treatment of local buckling in structural elements - the continuous strength method (CSM) - is outlined. It is based on a continuous relationship between cross-section slenderness and deformation capacity and applied in conjunction with accurate modeling. This method enables more rational and precise predictions of local buckling and therefore allows more economic design of the material.