A tie rod or tie bar (also known as a hanger rod if vertical) is a slender structural unit used as a tie and (in most applications) capable of carrying tensile loads only. It is any rod or bar-shaped structural member designed to prevent the separation of two parts, as in a vehicle.
In general, because the ratio of the typical tie rod's length to its cross section is usually very large, it would buckle under the action of compressive forces. The working strength of a tie rod is the product of the allowable working stress and the rod's minimum cross-sectional area.
If threads are cut into a cylindrical rod, that minimum area occurs at the root of the thread. Often rods are upset (made thicker at the ends) so that the tie rod does not become weaker when threads are cut into it.
Tie rods may be connected at the ends in various ways, but it is desirable that the strength of the connection should be at least equal to the strength of the rod. The ends may be threaded and passed through drilled holes or shackles and retained by nuts screwed on the ends. If the ends are threaded right- and left-hand the length between points of loading may be altered. This furnishes a second method for pre-tensioning the rod at will by turning it in the nuts so that the length will be changed. A turnbuckle will accomplish the same purpose. The ends may also be swaged to receive a fitting which is connected to the supports. Another way of making end connections is to forge an eye or hook on the rod.
An infamous structural failure involving tie rods is the Hyatt Regency walkway collapse in Kansas City, Missouri, on July 17, 1981. The hotel had a large atrium with three walkways crossing it suspended from tie rods. Construction errors led to several of the walkways collapsing, killing 114 people and injuring over 200.
Osgood and Graustein used the rectangular hyperbola, its conjugate hyperbola, and conjugate diameters to rationalize tie rods at 15 degree radial spacing, to a square of girders, from its center. The tie-rods to the corners (45°) correspond to the asymptotes, while the pair at 15° and 75° are conjugate, as are the pair at 30° and 60°. According to this model in linear elasticity, the application of a load compressing the square results in a deformation where the tie rods maintain their conjugate relations.
Structural engineering is a sub-discipline of civil engineering in which structural engineers are trained to design the 'bones and muscles' that create the form and shape of man-made structures. Structural engineers also must understand and calculate the stability, strength, rigidity and earthquake-susceptibility of built structures for buildings and nonbuilding structures. The structural designs are integrated with those of other designers such as architects and building services engineer and often supervise the construction of projects by contractors on site. They can also be involved in the design of machinery, medical equipment, and vehicles where structural integrity affects functioning and safety. See glossary of structural engineering.
Reinforced concrete (RC), also called reinforced cement concrete (RCC), is a composite material in which concrete's relatively low tensile strength and ductility are compensated for by the inclusion of reinforcement having higher tensile strength or ductility. The reinforcement is usually, though not necessarily, steel bars (rebar) and is usually embedded passively in the concrete before the concrete sets. However, post-tensioning is also employed as a technique to reinforce the concrete. Worldwide, in volume terms it is an absolutely key engineering material. In corrosion engineering terms, when designed correctly, the alkalinity of the concrete protects the steel rebar from corrosion.
In mechanics, compressive strength or compression strength is the capacity of a material or structure to withstand loads tending to reduce size. In other words, compressive strength resists compression, whereas tensile strength resists tension. In the study of strength of materials, tensile strength, compressive strength, and shear strength can be analyzed independently.
A truss is an assembly of members such as beams, connected by nodes, that creates a rigid structure.
A coil spring is a mechanical device which is typically used to store energy and subsequently release it, to absorb shock, or to maintain a force between contacting surfaces. They are made of an elastic material formed into the shape of a helix which returns to its natural length when unloaded.
A beam is a structural element that primarily resists loads applied laterally to the beam's axis. Its mode of deflection is primarily by bending. The loads applied to the beam result in reaction forces at the beam's support points. The total effect of all the forces acting on the beam is to produce shear forces and bending moments within the beams, that in turn induce internal stresses, strains and deflections of the beam. Beams are characterized by their manner of support, profile, equilibrium conditions, length, and their material.
In structural engineering, buckling is the sudden change in shape (deformation) of a structural component under load, such as the bowing of a column under compression or the wrinkling of a plate under shear. If a structure is subjected to a gradually increasing load, when the load reaches a critical level, a member may suddenly change shape and the structure and component is said to have buckled. Euler's critical load and Johnson's parabolic formula are used to determine the buckling stress in slender columns.
A bolted joint is one of the most common elements in construction and machine design. It consist of a male threaded fastener that captures and joins other parts, secured with a matching female screw thread. There are two main types of bolted joint designs: tension joints and shear joints.
A guy-wire, guy-line, guy-rope, or stay, also called simply a guy, is a tensioned cable designed to add stability to a free-standing structure. They are used commonly for ship masts, radio masts, wind turbines, utility poles, and tents. A thin vertical mast supported by guy wires is called a guyed mast. Structures that support antennas are frequently of a lattice construction and are called "towers". One end of the guy is attached to the structure, and the other is anchored to the ground at some distance from the mast or tower base. The tension in the diagonal guy-wire, combined with the compression and buckling strength of the structure, allows the structure to withstand lateral loads such as wind or the weight of cantilevered structures. They are installed radially, usually at equal angles about the structure, in trios and quads. As the tower leans a bit due to the wind force, the increased guy tension is resolved into a compression force in the tower or mast and a lateral force that resists the wind load. For example, antenna masts are often held up by three guy-wires at 120° angles. Structures with predictable lateral loads, such as electrical utility poles, may require only a single guy-wire to offset the lateral pull of the electrical wires, at a spot where the wires change direction.
A girder is a support beam used in construction. It is the main horizontal support of a structure which supports smaller beams. Girders often have an I-beam cross section composed of two load-bearing flanges separated by a stabilizing web, but may also have a box shape, Z shape, or other forms. A girder is commonly used to build bridges.
In physics, tension is described as the pulling force transmitted axially by the means of a string, a cable, chain, or similar object, or by each end of a rod, truss member, or similar three-dimensional object; tension might also be described as the action-reaction pair of forces acting at each end of said elements. Tension could be the opposite of compression.
A tied-arch bridge is an arch bridge in which the outward horizontal forces of the arch(es) caused by tension at the arch ends to a foundation are countered by equal tension of its own gravity plus any element of the total deck structure such great arch(es) support. The arch(es) have strengthened chord(s) that run to a strong part of the deck structure or to independent tie-rods below the arch ends.
A lattice girder is a truss girder where the load is carried by a web of latticed metal.
A Howe truss is a truss bridge consisting of chords, verticals, and diagonals whose vertical members are in tension and whose diagonal members are in compression. The Howe truss was invented by William Howe in 1840, and was widely used as a bridge in the mid to late 1800s.
Structural elements are used in structural analysis to split a complex structure into simple elements. Within a structure, an element cannot be broken down (decomposed) into parts of different kinds.
In structural engineering, a Warren truss or equilateral truss is a type of truss employing a weight-saving design based upon equilateral triangles. It is named after the British engineer James Warren, who patented it in 1846.
In geometry, two diameters of a conic section are said to be conjugate if each chord parallel to one diameter is bisected by the other diameter. For example, two diameters of a circle are conjugate if and only if they are perpendicular.
Concrete has relatively high compressive strength, but significantly lower tensile strength. The compressive strength is typically controlled with the ratio of water to cement when forming the concrete, and tensile strength is increased by additives, typically steel, to create reinforced concrete. In other words we can say concrete is made up of sand, ballast, cement and water.
A bolt is a form of threaded fastener with an external male thread requiring a matching pre-formed female thread such as a nut. Bolts are very closely related to screws.
This page is a glossary of Prestressed concrete terms.