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Stainless steel, although it has been in existence for 40 years, only recently has found an important place in structural applications. This tardiness in gaining structural acceptance is a result of two factors: (1) Traditionally, stainless steel has been considered an architectural metal used only for adornment or for its corrosion resistance. (2) The architect has not been aware of the high strengths available in stainless steel. This paper relates the outstanding properties of stainless steel to structural applications, illustrates what has been done in this field, and demonstrates how the architect and engineer can use stainless steel economically to create fresh new designs. Design features of many successful structural stainless steel applications, which have been engineered to be competitive with other materials, are studied. These applications are then related to architectural concepts. Light-gage design philosophy is discussed, and the types of sections required to produce economical structures are reviewed. These include the familiar “hat,” corrugated, and tubular sections and some of the structural elements and systems developed by aerospace engineers, such as the truss-core sandwich and the corrugated cylinder with ring stiffeners. The basic mechanical properties of stainless steel are examined. Methods for calculating column and bending strength, using established procedures, are reviewed.
stainless steels, structural engineering, design, mechanical properties, material behavior, applications, concepts, tests, evaluation
Kuentz, A. C.
Structural engineer, The International Nickel Co., Inc., New York, N. Y.