The computer design of tensile membrane structures

Tan, Kia Yick. (1989). The computer design of tensile membrane structures PhD Thesis, School of Engineering, The University of Queensland.

       
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Author Tan, Kia Yick.
Thesis Title The computer design of tensile membrane structures
School, Centre or Institute School of Engineering
Institution The University of Queensland
Publication date 1989
Thesis type PhD Thesis
Supervisor A/Prof John Lindsay Meek
Total pages 319
Language eng
Subjects 290804 Construction Engineering
Formatted abstract

Tensile membrane structures are a relatively new form of construction. Due to its highly subjective nature the design of membrane structures remains an esoteric art. The primary objective of this thesis is to examine the subjective aspects of the design process and endeavour to formulate simple procedures that will result in a mechanistic approach to the design.

The formfinding phase in the design of tensile membrane structures is probably most radically different from conventional structural design. There is no unique solution for this problem. Due to the limited application of membrane structures, very little guidelines have been established to aid in the selection of an ideal design.

A review of existing formfinding methods is given in Chapter 3. Modifications to the natural shape finding method proposed by Argyris et. al. for cable structures, resulted in a fairly automated and simple procedure for the formfinding of tensile membrane structures. Examples are presented to show how stress and geometry control can be achieved with the new method.

The cutting pattern design for tensile membrane structures is examined in Chapter 4. Justification for the use of geodesic patterning is given and a review of existing methods to achieve this is presented. A new method of geodesic patterning is proposed which effectively permits experimentation with patterning after the formfinding has been finalised. In this method stretch independent cable elements of uniform tension are allowed to slide over the predefined membrane surface until the geodesic between the specified end points is traced by the equilibrium position of these elements.

The peculiar response of woven fabrics to biaxial stresses is the topic of investigation that is presented in Chapter 5. A review of existing material models is given prior to the presentation of a simplified fabric material model. The main objective in this development is to evolve a material model that can be readily used in the structural analysis of tensile membrane structures. Although this model has yet to be comprehensive verified against experimental observations, test analyses showed its viability for inclusion in computer structural analysis of tensile membrane structures.

Keyword Lightweight construction -- Design
Lightweight construction -- Data processing

Document type: Thesis
Collection: UQ Theses (RHD) - UQ staff and students only
 
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