Local buckling and post-critical behavior of thin-walled composite channel section columns

Abstract This work presents a study of the behavior, performance and failure of thin-walled composite channel section columns. The study is carried-out using nonlinear finite element models of laminated columns, including geometric imperfections and material failure, as well as approximate analytical solutions based on the Classical Lamination Theory. The accuracy of the numerical model is assessed using experimental results available in the literature and very good results were obtained. The results show the influence of the column layup and wall thickness on the structural behavior of laminated columns, including the buckling mode and ultimate failure load. Finally, the numerical model is used to assess the accuracy of approximate closed-form expressions for evaluation of the local buckling loads of composite channel section columns.