Creating Member with Variable SHAPE-THIN Cross-Section

Tips & Tricks

In RFEM and RSTAB, you can analyze members with a variable cross‑section. These members can also consist of freely defined SHAPE‑THIN sections. For the determination of the internal forces and deformations, the cross‑section values are interpolated.

You can also design members with a variable SHAPE‑THIN section if you consider the following during modelling:

  • Create the start section in SHAPE‑THIN and save it after the calculation.
  • Create a copy of the cross‑section, for example by selecting the ‘Save As’ command on the ‘File’ menu.
  • Adjust the geometrical parameters like height or width in the copy to create the section at the end. Nodes or elements must not be added or deleted!
  • Calculate the cross‑section and save it.

After importing both cross‑sections in RFEM or RSTAB, you can check in the rendering mode if the modelling is correct: Only if the change of the cross‑section is shown as linear distribution, is it possible to perform a design in STEEL or RF‑STEEL Members.


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RFEM Main Program
RFEM 5.xx

Main Program

Structural engineering software for finite element analysis (FEA) of planar and spatial structural systems consisting of plates, walls, shells, members (beams), solids and contact elements

Price of First License
3,540.00 USD
RSTAB Main Program
RSTAB 8.xx

Main Program

The structural engineering software for design of frame, beam and truss structures, performing linear and nonlinear calculations of internal forces, deformations, and support reactions

Price of First License
2,550.00 USD
Cross-Sections Thin-Walled

Cross-Section Properties Software

Section properties, stress analysis, and plastic design of open and closed thin-walled cross-sections

Price of First License
1,120.00 USD