When a component is placed under load it undergoes elastic deformation. This deformation can be calculated by determining elastic lines for example. Elastic lines describe the deformation of the complete component in the form of a mathematical equation. In reality, it is often only the deformation at specific points on the component which is of interest. Energy methods can be applied to determine these deformations more simply. Castigliano’s first theorem uses energy methods to calculate the deformation of a point on the component. The theorem is applicable to both statically determinate and indeterminate systems.
In SE 110.44 the deformation of a single plane truss at one point is determined using Castigliano’s first theorem. The truss under investigation is made of bars joined together by a articulated construction using node disks.
The trusses can be considered as ideal trusses. The bars have special snap-lock fixtures on their ends allowing them to be fixed easily into the node disks. A load application device attached to a node disk generates an external force.
The range of different bar lengths provided permits three forms of truss to be constructed. The bars are made of PVC, so their deformations are clearly visible.
All the component elements of the experiment are clearly laid-out and housed securely in a storage system. The complete experimental setup is arranged in the frame SE 112.