Unilateral buckling is a contact problem whereby buckling is confined to take place in only one lateral direction. For plate structures, this can occur when a thin steel plate is juxtaposed with a rigid concrete medium and the steel may only buckle locally away from the concrete core. This paper investigates the use of simple and orthogonal polynomials in the Rayleigh–Ritz method for unilateral plate buckling. The orthogonal polynomials used are the classical Chebyshev types 1 and 2, Legrende, Hermite and Laguerre. The study presents a comparison between the efficiency of the polynomial-based displacement functions with regard to elastic bilateral and unilateral plate buckling, where efficiency is measured as a function of their convergence characteristics. Some buckling solutions for plates with varying boundary conditions and in-plane shear loads are also provided as an illustration.
Smith, ST, Bradford, MA & Oehlers, DJ 1999, 'Numerical convergence of simple and orthogonal polynomials for the unliteral plate buckling problem using the Rayleigh-Ritz method', International Journal for Numerical Methods in Engineering, vol. 44, no. 11, pp. 1685-1707.
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