This paper presents the direct strength method (DSM) equations for cold-formed steel beams subject to shear. Light gauge cold-formed steel sections have been developed as more economical building solutions to the alternative heavier hot-rolled sections in the commercial and residential markets. Cold-formed lipped channel beams (LCB), LiteSteel beams (LSB) and hollow flange beams (HFB) are commonly used as flexural members such as floor joists and bearers. However, their shear capacities are determined based on conservative design rules. For the shear design of cold-formed web panels, their elastic shear buckling strength must be determined accurately including the potential post-buckling strength. Currently the elastic shear buckling coefficients of web panels are determined by assuming conservatively that the web panels are simply supported at the junction between the flange and web elements and ignore the post-buckling strength. Hence experimental and numerical studies were conducted to investigate the shear behaviour and strength of LSBs, LCBs and HFBs. New direct strength method (DSM) based design equations were proposed to determine the ultimate shear capacities of cold-formed steel beams. An improved equation for the higher elastic shear buckling coefficient of cold-formed steel beams was proposed based on finite element analysis results and included in the DSM design equations. A new post-buckling coefficient was also introduced in the DSM equation to include the available post-buckling strength of cold-formed steel beams
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