- Project plans
- Project activities
- Legislation and standards
- Industry context
- Specialist wikis
Last edited 11 Feb 2022
A material under stress is in a state that has resulted from the application of a force or forces. These forces can also be called stresses. The effect on the material will depend on the type of stress that is applied.
 Tensile stress
If the stress acting on a structural member tends to make it longer, it is said to be under tensile stress or 'in tension'. The load carried by each unit area of the member’s cross section is the tensile stress in the member. This will make the member a ‘tie’. Steel is ideally suited to resist tensile stresses and is used widely in construction for this purpose, for example to reinforce concrete, or in the form of cables, wires and chains.
If the stress acting on a member tends to result in it shortening (its components are pushed together), it is said to be under compressive stress or 'in compression'. The load per unit area of the member is the compressive stress. This makes that member a strut, or if the member is large, it might be a column, pier or stanchion, depending on its position in a structure. Most materials can carry some compressive stresses – other than cables, wires, chains and membranes.
Shear stresses make the particles of a material slide relative to each other and usually result in deformation. An example is a riveted connection which can shear when excessive force is applied. Vertical forces acting on a cantilever can make it shear off at the wall junction. Shear forces produce shape deformation in materials eg, a rectangular element can be contorted into a skewed parallelogram. The shear stresses are those acting on the planes along which the sliding takes place and are measured across a unit area.
- Bending moment.
- Concept structural design of buildings.
- Bearing capacity.
- Failure of cast iron beams.
- Lateral loads.
- Limit state design.
- Point of contraflexure.
- Shell roof.
- Structural principles.
- Structural steelwork.
- Tensile strength.
- Tensile structures.
- Types of structural load.
Featured articles and news
Or are you capping.
Digital gaming competition for UK students aged 16 to 18.
Heritage protection in England vs Australia.
Three-quarters of fire doors fail inspections
The role of geoparks, biospheres and world heritage sites.
Just one month to go ! Find out more here.
A new gallery for the University of Huddersfield.
What will it take to stop it ?
To celebrate world bee day 2022 !
Not forgetting part F and the new part overheating part O.
As energy prices jump up in cost.
With people in the UK from Ukraine.
Industry leader Steve Murray takes on role.
An abundant and versatile building material.
600,000 heat pump installations targeted per year by 2028.
Helping prevent those unwanted outcomes.
How has transport changed due to Covid-19 ?
Will you need it ? after June 15 and the new Part O ?
Create an account and write the first of many articles.
CIAT commentary after the first meeting.
Who is to blame?
Research recommends focussing on portfolio success rather than project success.