Using Result Beam in RFEM

Technical Article on the Topic Structural Analysis Using Dlubal Software

  • Knowledge Base

Technical Article

The "Result Beam" member type has been available since the release of RFEM 5. The result beam is a virtual member that does not have any stiffness and does not require any support. It can be used in various situations in order to integrate the results from members, surfaces, and solids, and to display them as member internal forces.

Input

After selecting the "Result Beam" member type, it is necessary to set further parameters. There are four options for specifying the integration area:

  • Within a cuboid - quadratic: A quadratic integration area is used, the centroid of which is located in the member axis.
  • Within a cuboid - general: A rectangular integration area is used, of which the centroid may vary.
  • Within a cylinder: A circular integration area is used, of which the centroid is located in the member axis.
  • From listed including objects: Only those elements for evaluation are used that are in the list of "Including Objects" and are within the possible effective area (see below).

If the integration area overlaps the objects that should not be taken into account, these objects can be defined in the "Except from Including Objects" list.

Effective Area of Result Beam

A result beam can only provide the results of those elements located within a rectangular axis of the member start and end. All the elements outside these boundaries are not taken into account.

This is illustrated in Figure 01: The results do not apply to the areas marked in red. The turquoise areas were manually modeled as auxiliary areas and represent the boundaries of the result beam.

Image 01 - Effective Area

Cross-section

For the internal forces of the member, it is irrelevant which cross‑section is used. Thus, if you want to apply the result beam only to determine the internal forces, you can use any cross‑section. However, if you want to perform further design in the add‑on modules such as RF‑STEEL EC3 or RF‑CONCRETE Members, the cross‑section plays an important role and, thus, should be specifically defined.

Member Division of Results

Since the distribution of internal forces is not very reliable, it is necessary to set a higher number of member divisions for result diagrams in the global calculation parameters.

Image 02 - Member Division

Result Beam Position 

For the internal forces N, Vy, and Vz, the parallel distance of the result beam to the centroid of the including objects does not matter. Thus, if you want to evaluate only the axial and shear forces, you can model the result member on or above the structure to get a clear display.

However, it is crucial for the internal forces Mt, My, and Mz to place the result beam in the centroid of the including objects. In addition to including moments, the axial forces multiplied by the distance of each FE mesh point are added to the centroid of the result beam.

Image 03 - Result Beam Position 

Author

Dipl.-Ing. (FH) Walter Fröhlich

Dipl.-Ing. (FH) Walter Fröhlich

Product Engineering & Customer Support

Mr. Fröhlich takes care of the processing of user questions in the customer support and is also responsible for the development in the field of steel construction.

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  • Updated 15 March 2022

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RFEM 5
RFEM

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
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