Why are the contact stresses of members with elastic foundations given in [kip/ft]?

Answer

The 'Contact Stresses' are displayed as Contact Forces in the member results. They refer (like a uniformly distributed load) to a member length of 1 meter. The length-related unit [kN/m] describes the force that is present on a member with a width of 1 meter.

To get the contact stresses of a foundation with a width other than 1 m, divide the contact force by the foundation width. Thus, you can get the soil pressure in [kN/m2], which is related to the width of the foundation as surface stress.

Keywords

Contact stress Contact force Foundation width Elastic foundation

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