Modern architecture requires transparent and slender structural elements for columns. Structural steel is a material that allows for slender columns. However, flexural buckling is usually the dominant failure mode of such columns. If flexural buckling can be suppressed, the full yield stress of the steel may be utilized. It would then make sense to use high-strength steel. In this work, a slender transparent glass-supported high-strength steel column was designed, tested and numerically analysed. It consisted of a 32 mm diameter Dywidag steel bar restrained against flexural buckling by four heat-strengthened float glass panes, thus providing sufficient redundancy, allowing for a glass pane to break without column failure. The glass panes were connected to the steel bar by vertically sliding steel sleeves avoiding normal stresses caused by axial column deformation occurring in the glass panes. The column was one storey high with slightly shorter glass panes, keeping them free from the roof and the floor. This paper focuses on the design of the glass-supported high-strength steel column by finite element analysis. Further, it briefly discusses the feasibility of the concept by experiments and it simulates these experiments again with finite element analysis.
Snijder, H. H., Dierks, D., Huveners, E. M. P., & Spoorenberg, R. C. (2015). Suppressing buckling of a slender high-strength steel column by glass panes. Structural Engineering International, 25(3), 249-257. https://doi.org/10.2749/101686615X14210663188772