Engineering >> Civil & Environmental Engineering

Calculated and Applied Centroids

by Andrew Smith


Submitted : Fall 2013

Centroids are an important aspect in structural engineering. As the geometric center of an object, centroids mark where the axial force, shear force, and bending moment act in a structural element’s cross section, and they are also important factors in calculating moments of inertia. Such information is key in determining if an element can withstand these loads, and in doing so the correct element can be utilized in construction. However, most of the time, centroids are only mathematically calculated and then applied to the real word. In this case, the method was carried out backwards as well, finding the centroid of a given cross section experimentally and then comparing the findings to the theoretical location.

In doing so, it was shown that the mathematical computation and experimental calculation of a centroid overlap in a smooth fashion, both giving rise to the same location, bridging the gap between paper and the real world.



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Advisors :
Brian Curtin, Mathematics and Statistics
Michael Stokes, Civil & Environmental Engineering
Suggested By :
Michael Stokes