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182 / ENGINEERING JOURNAL / FOURTH QUARTER / 2002

T
orsional analysis of rolled steel sections is generally
accomplished with torsional function curves which
have been published by the American Institute of Steel Con-
struction in Design Guide No. 9, Torsional Analysis of
Structural Steel Members (Seaburg and Carter, 1997),
which is an update to an earlier Bethlehem Steel publication
(Heins and Seaburg, 1963). Such problems are more easily
solved with a personal computer than with charts, and this
paper presents the equations in a form suitable for pro-
gramming.
The equations for the angle of twist, , for twelve cases
of torsional loading and end conditions are given in AISCs
Design Guide No. 9, but the successive derivatives of
(', '', and ''') are not given. These derivatives are required
to determine the torsional stresses in the following equa-
tions:
Pure Torsional Shear Stress
Warping Normal Stress
Warping Shear Stress
where
G = shear modulus of elasticity; 11,200 ksi for steel
t = thickness of the element, in.
E = modulus of elasticity; 29,000 ksi for steel
W
ns
= normalized warping function at a point s on the
cross section, in.
2
S
ws
= warping statical moment at a point s on the
cross section, in.
4
The reader is referred to the AISC Design Guide No. 9
(Seaburg and Carter, 1997) for a general discussion of tor-
Technical Note:
Torsional Analysis of Steel Sections
sional stresses, end conditions and combining torsional
stresses with bending and shear stresses.
The user is encouraged to program the pinned and fixed
end conditions on the same output in order to compare the
trade-off between rotational stiffness and warping normal
stress.
The equations for , ', '', and ''' for the twelve com-
monly encountered loading and end conditions presented in
the AISC Design Guide No. 9 are given in the Appendix of
this paper. The case numbers are consistent with those given
in the design guide. These equations contain no dimen-
sional factors and may be used with any consistent set of
units. Each set of equations has been tested against a solu-
tion using the curves from the AISC Design Guide (Seaburg
and Carter, 1997). Although the additional precision
afforded by using the equations (instead of the curves) is of
doubtful value, the ease and speed of computation is
immensely helpful.
REFERENCES
Seaburg, P.A. and Carter, C.J. (1997), Torsional Analysis of
Structural Steel Members, Steel Design Guide Series No.
9, AISC, Chicago, IL.
Heins, C.P. and Seaburg, P.A. (1963), Torsion Analysis of
Rolled Steel Sections, Bethlehem Steel Company Steel
Design File, 1963-B.
WILLIAM E. MOORE II and KEITH M. MUELLER
William E. Moore, II, is consultant, Ferro Products Corpora-
tion, Charleston, WV.
Keith M. Mueller is senior engineer, American Institute of
Steel Construction, Inc., Chicago, IL.
' Gt
''
ns
E W
'''
ws
ES
t

(1)
(2)
(3)
The following variables and constants are used throughout
the appendix:
a =
G = shear modulus of elasticity; 11,200 ksi for steel
E = modulus of elasticity; 29,000 ksi for steel
C
w
= warping constant, in.
2
J = torsional constant, in.
4
T = concentrated torque, kip-in.
t = running torque load, kip-in./ft
L = span length, in.
z = length from left support to cross-section ana-
lyzed, in.
ENGINEERING JOURNAL / FOURTH QUARTER / 2002 / 183
APPENDIX
w
EC
GJ

T
L
T
'
'' ''' 0
Tz
GJ
T
GJ



T
L
T
1 2 2
1
2
1
2
2
1
2
3
1
2
cosh sinh
' 1.0 cosh sinh
'' cosh sinh
''' cosh sinh
where
tanh
2
z z z
c c c
a a a
c z z
c
a a a
c z z
c
a a a
c z z
c
a a a
Ta
c
GJ
L
c
a
j \
+
, (
( ,
j \
+
, (
( ,
j \

, (
( ,
j \
+
, (
( ,

Case 1Concentrated Torques with Free Ends


Case 2Concentrated Torques with Fixed Ends
184 / ENGINEERING JOURNAL / FOURTH QUARTER / 2002
Case 4Uniformly Distributed Torque with Pinned Ends

t
L
2
2
1
2
1
1
1
1
cosh tanh sinh 1.0
2
2
2
' 1.0 sinh tanh cosh
2
2
'' cosh tanh sinh 1.0
2
''' sinh tanh cosh
2
where
L z
z L z
c a z
a a a
L a
L z
z L z
c a
a a a
a L
z L z
c
a a a
c z L z
a
a a a
t
c
GJ
, ] j \
+ , ]
, (
( , , ]
]
, ]
j \
+
, ] , (
( ,
]
j \

, (
( ,
j \

, (
( ,

Case 5Linearly Varying Torque with Pinned Ends



t
L
3
2 2
1
2 2
2
2
1
2 2
1
1
1
sinh
6
6
sinh
cosh
1
'
6
2
sinh
sinh
''
sinh
cosh
1
'''
sinh
where
z
z
za a a z
L
L L
L L
a
z
z
a a a
c L
L L
L L
a
z
z
a
c
L
L
a
z
a
c
L
L
a
a
t
c
GJ
c
j \
, (
+
, (
( ,
j \
, (
+
, (
( ,
j \
, (

, (
( ,
j \
, (

, (
( ,


Case 3Concentrated Torque with Pinned Ends

T
L L(1 )
( )
( )
1 2
1 2
1 2
1 2
2
1
1
0
1.0 sinh
' 1.0 cosh
'' sinh
''' cosh
sinh
( ) sinh sinh cosh
tanh
sinh
' cosh sinh sinh
tanh
z L
z
c z c a
a
z
c c
a
c c
z
a a
c c
z
a
a
L z L
L
a L z z
c L z a
L a a a
a
L
a L z z
c
L a a a
a

, ]
+
, ]
]
, ]
+
, ]
]


<
, ]

, ]
+

, ]

, ]
]


1
1
2
1
2
sinh
'' sinh sinh cosh
tanh
sinh
''' cosh sinh sinh
tanh
where
sinh
cosh
tanh
L
c
a L z z
a L a a a
a
L
c
a L z z
L a a a
a
a
T
c
GJ
L
a L
c
L a
a
j \
, (
, (
( ,
j \

, (

, (
( ,
j \

, (

, (
( ,


ENGINEERING JOURNAL / FOURTH QUARTER / 2002 / 185
Case 6Concentrated Torque with Fixed Ends
1 2
1 2
1
2
1
2
2
1 3 4 5
1 4 5
0
cosh 1.0 sinh
' sinh cosh 1.0
'' cosh sinh
''' sinh cosh
cosh sinh
' sinh cosh 1.
z L
z
z z
c a c
a a
a
z z
c c
a a
c z z
c
a
a a
c z z
c
a a
a
L z L
z z z
Hc a c c c
a a a
z z
Hc c c
a a

, ]
j \
+
, ] , (
( ,
]
j \
+
, (
( ,
j \

, (
( ,
j \

, (
( ,
<
j \
+ +
, (
( ,
+
1
4 5
1
4 5
2
0
'' cosh sinh
''' sinh cosh
where
1.0 cosh cosh 1.0
sinh
tanh sinh
cosh cosh cosh cosh 1.0
( 1
sinh
Hc z z
c c
a
a a
Hc z z
c c
a a
a
L L
a a
L L
L L a a
a a
H
L L L L
a a a a
L
L a
a
j \
, (
( ,
j \
+
, (
( ,
j \
+
, (
( ,
, ] j \ j \

, ( , ( , ]
( , ( ,

, ]
+ +
, ]
, ]
]

j \
+
, (
( ,
+
1
2
3
4
.0) sinh
( 1)
cosh cosh
1 1
sinh sinh
sinh tanh tanh tanh
cosh 1.0 cosh cosh sinh
sinh sinh
1.0 cosh 1.0
tanh
L
a
T
c
H GJ
L L
L a L a
c H
L a L a L L
a a a a
L L L L L
a a a a a
c
L L
H
a a
L
a
c
L
H
a
, ]
, ]

, ]

, ]
, ]
]

+
j \

, (
+ + +
, (
( ,
j \ j \
+
, ( , (
( , ( ,
+
j \

, (
( ,
+
5
cosh cosh
sinh
cosh 1.0
cosh
L L
a a
L
a
L
a
L
c
a
H
j \
, (
( ,
j \

, (
( ,

+
T
L L(1 )
186 / ENGINEERING JOURNAL / FOURTH QUARTER / 2002
Case 7Uniformly Distributed Torque with Fixed Ends Case 8Linearly Varying Torque with Fixed Ends
t
L
1 2
1 2
1
2
1
2
2
1
2
(cosh 1.0) (1 ) sinh
2
' sinh 1.0 cosh
2
'' cosh sinh
''' sinh cosh
where
2
1 cosh
sinh
z z z z
c a c
a a L a
z
z z
c c
a a
L
c a
z z
c
a a a
L
c z z
c
a a a
tL
c
GJ
L
a
c
L
a
, ]
+
, ]
]
j \
+
, (
( ,
j \

, (
( ,
j \

, (
( ,

t
L
3
1 2
3
2
1
2
3
2
1
2
2 3
3
1
2
3 3
2
1
2
cosh 1.0 sinh
6
' sinh cosh
2
'' cosh sinh
'' sinh cosh
where
tanh
2
2 sinh
2
z z z z
c c S
a a a L
c z a
z z
c S S
a a
a L
c za
z z
c S
a a
a L
c a
z z
c S
a a
a L
tL
c
GJ
a
L
c S
L a
L
a
a
L
S
, ]
j \ j \
+
, ]
, ( , (
( , ( ,
, ]
]
j \
+
, (
( ,
j \
+
, (
( ,
j \
+
, (
( ,

sinh
cosh 1.0
6.0
sinh 2.0 2cosh
L
L
a
a
L L L
a a a
, ]
, ]
j \

, ] , (
( ,
, ]
, ]
+
, ]
, ]
, ]
]
ENGINEERING JOURNAL / FOURTH QUARTER / 2002 / 187
Case 9Concentrated Torque with Fixed and Free End Case 10Partially Uniformly Distributed Torque with
Fixed and Free End
T
L L(1 )
1 2
1 2
1
2
1
2
2
1 3 4 4
1 4
0
cosh 1.0 sinh
' sinh cosh 1.0
'' cosh sinh
''' sinh cosh
tanh cosh sinh
' tanh sinh
z L
z
z z
c a c
a a
a
z z
c c
a a
c z z
c
a
a a
c z z
c
a a a
L z L
L z z L
c a c c c
a a a a
L z
c c
a a

, ]
j \
+
, ] , (
( ,
]
j \
+
, (
( ,
j \

, (
( ,
j \

, (
( ,
<
j \
+ +
, (
( ,

1 4
1 4
2
1
2
3
4
cosh
'' tanh cosh sinh
''' tanh sinh cosh
where
sinh tanh cosh tanh
tanh cosh tanh sinh
cosh 1.0
z
a
c c L z z
a
a a a
c c L z z
a a a a
T
c
GJ
L L L L
c
a a a a
L L L L
c
a a a a
L
c
a
j \
+
, (
( ,
j \
+
, (
( ,
j \
+
, (
( ,


t
L L(1-)
1 2
1 2
1
2
1
2
2
2
1 3 4 5
0
cosh 1.0 sinh
2
' sinh cosh
'' cosh sinh
''' sinh cosh
cosh sinh
'
z L
z L z
z
c a c a L z
a
a a a
z z
c c a L L z
a a
c z z
c a L a
a
a a
c z z
c a L
a a a
L z L
z z
c a c c c
a a

, ] j \ j \
+
, ] , ( , (
( , ( ,
]
j \
+
, (
( ,
j \

, (
( ,
j \

, (
( ,
<
j \
+
, (
( ,

1 4 5
1 4 5
1
4 5
1
2
2 2
3
2
4
sinh cosh
'' cosh sinh
''' sinh cosh
where
tanh sinh cosh
tanh sinh cosh tanh 1.0
2
sinh
z z
c a c c
a a
z z
c c c
a a
c z z
c c
a
a a
t
c
GJ
L L
L L
c
a a
a a
L L L L L L
c
a a a a a
a
L L
c
a a
j \
+
, (
( ,
j \
+
, (
( ,
j \
+
, (
( ,

j \

+
, (
( ,

+ +
j \

,
( ,
5
tanh
sinh
L
a
L L
c
a a
(


188 / ENGINEERING JOURNAL / FOURTH QUARTER / 2002
Case 11Linearly Varying Torque with Free and
Fixed End
Case 12Uniformly Distributed Torque with Fixed
and Pinned Ends

t
L
2
2 2
1
3
2
2
1
1
2
5 1
1.0 tanh
2 6
sinh
2 6
cosh
cosh
'
2 2
cosh
sinh
''
2
cosh
L a L L
L
z
a
L a L a a
c z
a L z
a
L
L a a L
a
z
c a L a L z
a
a L
L a L a aL
a
z
c a L
a
L
L a a
a
, ]
j \ j \
+ +
, ]
, ( , (
( , ( ,
, ]
, ]

j \
, ]
j \
, (
+
, ]
, (
, ( ( ,
, ]
( ,
, ]
]
, ]
j \
j \ , ]
, (
+ +
, (
, ]
, ( ( ,
, ]
( ,
]
j
j \
+
, (
( ,
1
3
2
1
cosh
'''
2
cosh
where
z
L
z
c a L a
a
L
L a L a
a
ta
c
GJ
, ] \
, ]
, (

, ]
, (
, ]
( ,
]
, ] j \
j \ , ]
, (

, (
, ]
, ( ( ,
, ]
( ,
]

t
L
1
2
2
1
1
2
tanh tanh cosh sinh
cosh
1
2
cosh cosh
sinh
' 1.0 tanh sinh cosh
cosh
cosh
'' tanh cosh sinh 1
cosh
L z L z z
H
a a a a a
z
c
z
a
L L
a
a a
z
c L z z z
a
H
a L
a a a a
a
z
c L z z
a
H
L
a a a a
a
, ] j \
+
, ] , (
( ,
, ]
, ]

, ]
, ] +
, ]
, ]
]
, ]
, ]
j \
+ +
, ]
, (
( ,
, ]
, ]
]
j \
+ +
, (
( ,
1
3
2
1
2
2
.0
sinh
''' tanh sinh cosh
cosh
where
1 1
1.0
2
cosh tanh
z
c L z z
a
H
L
a a a a
a
ta
c
GJ
L
H
L L L
a
a a a
, ]
, ]
, ]
, ]
, ]
]
, ]
, ]
j \
+ +
, ]
, (
( ,
, ]
, ]
]

j \ j \
, ( , (
+
, ( , (
, ( , (
( , ( ,