Behaviour and Design of Steel I-Beam to Column End Plate Bolted Connections Based on Experimental and Numerical Investigations
Steel Beam to column rigid connections are required to transfer forces and moments. I-beam are commonly connected to columns using bolted end plates rigid connections, which are mainly subjected to bending moment and shear force. Behaviour of these connections have been extensively investigated. How-ever, besides being complicated, current methods of estimating bolt forces and plate thickness of the connec-tions do not consider the interaction between the bolt elongation and the plate deformation. An experimental investigation is performed on rigid beam to column bolted connections with flushed and extended end plates. Then, a numerical model accounting for geometric and material nonlinearities is built up. The model results are verified against the experimental investigation data. Using this model, a parametric study is performed on the connection. Interaction curves have been presented, which reveals the effects of the investigated parame-ters on the bolts’ forces, the prying action, the thickness of the end plate and the connection capacity. Modes of failure of these connections have been scrutinized showing two distinct modes: bolts failure or steel end plate yielding. The results of the investigation are used to perform a critical review of the procedures adopted by AISC for these rigid connections revealing the shortcomings of the AISC design procedures. Finally, de-sign charts and equations for the rigid end plate connections are introduced based on the results of the exper-imental and numerical investigation, which may significantly facilitate the selection of both the bolt’s diame-ters and the end plate thickness for the investigated connections.
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