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Fundamentals of Structural Analysis, 2nd Edition



Fundamentals of Structural Analysis, 2nd Edition

Harry H. West, Louis F. Geschwindner

ISBN: 978-0-471-35556-4 February 2002 600 Pages


Fundamentals of Structural Analysis offers a comprehensive and well-integrated presentation of the foundational principles of structural analysis. It presents a rigorous treatment of the underlying theory and a broad spectrum of example problems to illustrate practical applications. The book is richly illustrated with a balance between realistic representations of actual structures and the idealized sketches customarily used in engineering practice. There is a large selection of problems that can be assigned by the instructor that range in difficulty from simple to challenging.

Part One: Orientation


Basic Concepts of Structural Analysis

Part Two: Analysis of Statically Determinate Structures


Member Forces in Planar Trusses and Space Frameworks

Member Forces in Beams and Frames

Influence Lines and Maximum Load Effects

Part Three: Elastic Deflections of Structures

Elastic Deflections of Trusses and Frameworks

Elastic Deflections of Beam and Frame Structures

Part Four: Analysis of Statically Indeterminate Structures

More Basic Concepts of Structural Analysis

Method of Consistent Deformations (and Other Compatibility Methods)

Slope Deflection Method (and Other Equilibrium Methods)

Moment Distribution Method

Part Five: Matrix Methods of Analysis

Member Force-Deformation Relations

Stiffness Method

Flexibility Method

Appendix: Answers to Selected Problems
  • Some topics under the classical methods have been deleted that were narrowly focused, were not considered foundational, or did not contribute to the overall continuity of the presentation.
  • A blend in the character of the graphical illustrations has been introduced. Some are treated with realism to reflect the composition of actual structures while, other are simplified in consistency with customary assumptions of analysis. In the examples, the stated problems are illustrated with realism, but the problems solutions reflect simple line diagrams that are consistent with engineering practice.
  • Presentation of the underlying theory is developed in a clear and simple manner. It is substantive, however does not engage in unnecessary mathematical sophistication. Students are not offered recipes to follow without an understanding of the underlying theory. They are taught to use the analytic tools presented to them with confidence and with a full knowledge of their limitations.
  • The content offers a comprehensive treatment of structural theory ranging from the classical methods to modern matrix methods. It is important for students to see the entire range of methods, both classical and modern, so as to place the entire sphere of structural analysis in proper perspective. Classical methods evolved from the era of hand calculations and center on specificity. These methods allow both student and instructor to focus on the solutions for certain structure types and their corresponding modes of response. Modern matrix methods are computer orientated and center on generality. These approaches find applications in the solutions for large, complicated systems. However, a thorough grounding in classical methods enhances the understanding of the more comprehensive modern computer approaches and provides the ability to check the reasonableness of computer results. A text that weaves together the classical and modern methods, as this text does, helps students see the central thread that is foundational in all of structural analysis.
  • The text is richly textured with photographs and a blend of graphical illustrations. Some photos are intended to provide examples of structure types while others are photos of monumental structures to provide motivation and to show the splendor of structural engineering. The illustrations range from realistic to idealized, simple line drawings.
  • There is a broad spectrum of example problems that demonstrate the application of theory to practical problem solving in structural engineering. There is a correspondingly rich array of problems at the end of each chapter that the instructor can use for homework assignments. These range in difficulty from the very simple-type problems (to reinforce basic concepts) to difficult and challenging problems (to test the students ability to extrapolate beyond the obvious).