Quasistatic Bending of Beams
A beam deforms and stresses develop inside it when a transverse load is applied on it. In the quasistatic case, the amount of bending deflection and the stresses that develop are assumed not to change over time. In a horizontal beam supported at the ends and loaded downwards in the middle, the material at the over-side of the beam is compressed while the material at the underside is stretched. There are two forms of internal stresses caused by lateral loads:
- Shear stress parallel to the lateral loading plus complementary shear stress on planes perpendicular to the load direction;
- Direct compressive stress in the upper region of the beam, and direct tensile stress in the lower region of the beam.
These last two forces form a couple or moment as they are equal in magnitude and opposite in direction. This bending moment resists the sagging deformation characteristic of a beam experiencing bending. The stress distribution in a beam can be predicted quite accurately even when some simplifying assumptions are used.
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