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Engineering LibreTexts

5.5: Method of Sections

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  • Page ID 52781

  • Jacob Moore & Contributors
  • Pennsylvania State University Mont Alto via Mechanics Map

The method of sections is a process used to solve for the unknown forces acting on members of a truss . The method involves breaking the truss down into individual sections and analyzing each section as a separate rigid body. The method of sections is usually the fastest and easiest way to determine the unknown forces acting in a specific member of the truss.

Using the Method of Sections:

The process used in the method of sections is outlined below.

A truss bridge with a 30-meter span consisting of members A, D and H (left to right), each 10 meters long. The span connects to the ground with a pin joint at A's left end and a roller joint at H's right end. The endpoints of member D are attached to the top ends of two vertical members: C (left) and G (right), with the lower ends of C and G connected by a horizontal member F. Diagonal members B and I, at 20° below the horizontal, connect the left end of F to the pin joint, and the right end of F to the roller joint, respectively. Downwards forces of 60 kN and 80 kN are applied at the top ends of C and G, respectively.

Figure \(\PageIndex{1}\): The first step in the method of sections is to label each member.

Free body diagram of the truss bridge from Fig. 1 above: in addition to the downwards applied forces, the upwards reaction forces of 66.7 kN at the left end of member A and 73.3 kN at the right end of member H are shown.

Figure \(\PageIndex{2}\): Treat the entire truss as a rigid body and solve for the reaction forces supporting the truss structure.

The free body diagram from Fig. 2 above is depicted with a vertical dotted line dividing the bridge down the middle.

  • Any external reaction or load forces that may be acting at the section.
  • An internal force in each member that was cut when splitting the truss into sections. Remember that for a two-force member, the force will be acting along the line between the two connection points on the member. We will also need to guess if it will be a tensile or a compressive force. An incorrect guess now, though, will simply lead to a negative solution later on. A common strategy then is to assume all forces are tensile; then later in the solution any positive forces will be tensile forces and any negative forces will be compressive forces.

Free body diagram of the left side of the bridge as divided by the dotted line in Fig. 3 above. In addition to the applied and reaction forces present on A, tension forces exerted by the halves of members D, E and F that were removed from the diagram by the cut on the halves present in the diagram are included.

Figure \(\PageIndex{4}\): Next, draw a free body diagram of one or both halves of the truss. Add the known forces, as well as unknown tensile forces for each member that you cut.

  • For 2D problems you will have three possible equations for each section: two force equations and one moment equation. \[ \sum \vec{F} = 0 \quad\quad\quad\quad \sum \vec{M} = 0 \] \[ \sum F_x = 0 \, ; \,\,\, \sum F_y = 0 \, ; \,\,\, \sum M_z = 0 \]
  • For 3D problems you will have six possible equations for each section: three force equations and three moment equations. \[ \sum \vec{F} = 0 \] \[ \sum F_x = 0 \, ; \,\,\, \sum F_y = 0 \, ; \,\,\, \sum F_z = 0 \] \[ \sum \vec{M} = 0 \] \[ \sum M_x = 0 \, ; \,\,\, \sum M_y = 0 \, ; \,\,\, \sum M_z = 0 \]
  • Finally, solve the equilibrium equations for the unknowns. You can do this algebraically, solving for one variable at a time, or you can use matrix equations to solve for everything at once. If you assumed that all forces were tensile earlier, remember that negative answers indicate compressive forces in the members.

Example \(\PageIndex{1}\)

Find the forces acting on members BD and CE. Be sure to indicate if the forces are tensile or compressive.

A truss bridge with a 30-meter span; the leftmost end, point A, connects to the ground with a pin joint and the rightmost end, F, connects to the ground with roller joint. The span is formed from 3 10-meter horizontal members: AB, BD, and DF. Two vertical members, BC and DE, attach to the endpoints of that span's central member and extend below it. Another horizontal member connects points C and E. The diagonal members AC and FE, each 20° below the horizontal, connect the ends of that lower horizontal member to the endpoints of the bridge span. A downwards force of 60 kN is applied at point B, and a downwards force of 80 kN is applied at point D.

Example \(\PageIndex{2}\)

Find the forces acting on members AC, BC, and BD of the truss. Be sure to indicate if the forces are tensile or compressive.

A tower composed of trusses arranged in a long rectangle composed of 4 identical smaller rectangles that are each 10 m in length and 6 m in height. The lowest points of the tower, A on the left and B on the right, are attached to the ground with a pin joint and a roller joint respectively. Points C and D are attached to A and B respectively by vertical members, and B and C are linked by a diagonal member. At each side of the lower horizontal member of the topmost rectangular subunit, a 10-meter member protrudes horizontally and a diagonal member links the free end of the protrusion to the corresponding upper corner of the topmost rectangle. The endpoints of the protruding members experience a force downwards and to the right, at 15° from the vertical. The magnitude of the left member's force is 40 kN and the magnitude of the right member's is 50 kN.

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Tutorial: How to Solve a Truss Structure using Method of Sections

In this tutorial, we will explore and learn the benefits of using the Method of Sections to solve your truss structure. What are trusses? If you’re unsure about this, visit our What is a truss article. The method of sections is used to solve larger truss structures in a fast, simple manner. It involves taking a ‘cut’ through a number of members to evaluate their axial forces and use this as our basis to solve the rest of the truss structure.

The great thing is, SkyCiv Truss does this automatically for you. Model your own trusses and the software will show interactive step-by-step working out of the method of sections!

Watch the Video Tutorial

Sample Question

For our worked example, we’ll be looking at the following question:

Question: Using the method of sections, determine the forces in members 10, 11, and 13 of the following truss structure:

SkyCiv Truss Tutorial, method of sections

Step 1: Calculate the Reactions to the Supports

Like most static structural analyses, we must first start by locating and solving the reactions at supports . This will give us the boundary conditions we need to progress in solving the truss structure. Simplifying the structure to just include the loads and supports:

Analysis and Calculation using Method of Sections

Without spending too much time calculating the reactions, you generally start by taking the sum of moments about a point. Taking the sum of moments about the left support gets us:

Tutorial to Solve Truss by Method of Sections - 1

So the reaction at the right support (R B ) is 17.5 kN in an upward direction. Now, taking the sum of forces in the y gives us the reaction R A as 7.5kN in an upward direction:

Tutorial to Solve Truss by Method of Sections - 2

Step 2: Make a cut along the members of interest

Here comes the most important part of solving a truss using the method of sections. It involves making a slice through the members you wish to solve. This method of structural analysis is extremely useful when trying to solve some of the members without having to solve the entire structure using the method of joints. So, in our example here would be our slice:

SkyCiv Truss Tutorial, method of sections

Focussing on the left side only, you are left with the following structure:

SkyCiv Truss Tutorial, method of sections

Now think of this structure as a single-standing structure. The laws of statics still apply – so the sum of moments and forces must all equal zero. The members with arrows (F 13 , F 10 , F 11 ) are what stabilize the reaction and forces applied to the structure. Note that the sum of moments is taken about node 7 – as would exclude the forces of members 13 and 10 – leaving F 11 to be isolated.

Using the above Free Body Diagram, we can obtain the following formulae:

Sum of forces in the y-direction:

[math] \begin{align} +\uparrow \text{   } \sum{F_y} &= 0\\ 7.5\text{ kN} – 10 \text{ kN} – F_{10}sin(45^{\circ}) &= 0\\ F_{10} &= -3.536 \text{ kN} \end{align} [math]

Sum of moments about node 7:

[math] \begin{align} +\circlearrowleft \text{   } \sum{M_7} &= 0\\ -(15 \text{ m})(7.5 \text{ kN}) + (5 \text{ m})F_{11} &= 0\\ F_{11} &= 22.5 \text{ kN} \end{align} [math]

Sum of forces in the x-direction:

[math] \begin{align} +\rightarrow \text{   } \sum{F_x} &= 0\\ F_{13} + F_{11} + F_{10}cos(45^{\circ}) &= 0\\ F_{13} &= -F_{11} – F_{10}cos(45^{\circ}) \\ F_{13} &= – (22.5 \text{ kN}) – (-3.536 \text{ kN})cos(45^{\circ}) \\ F_{13} &= -22.5 \text{ kN} + (3.536 \text{ kN})cos(45^{\circ}) \\ F_{13} &= -20 \text{ kN} \end{align} [math]

Final Solution

We can use these results to solve the remaining members in the truss structure. We hope this truss calculation example has been useful and feel free to comment with your questions below. As a reference, the results for the entire Truss structure can be found below (using our Truss Calculator ) which is great for checking your answers!

Method of Sections

Summary of Steps

  • Always Start by calculating reactions at supports
  • Make a slice through the members you wish to solve
  • Treat the half structure as its own static truss
  • Solve the truss by taking the sum of forces = 0
  • Take the moment about a node of more than one unknown member

SkyCiv Truss Software

We hope that you found this tutorial useful for your projects. Visit our truss tutorials for more useful information about truss and don’t forget to check out our guide to solving truss by Method of Joints .

SkyCiv Truss can calculate the method of sections automatically for you. Or try our Free Truss Calculator which will give you the final answer (no hand calculations).

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Chapter 5: Trusses

5.3 Method of Sections

The method of sections uses rigid body analysis to solve for a specific member or two. Instead of looking at each joint, you make a cut through the truss, turning the members along that line into internal forces (assume in tension). Then you solve the rigid body using the equilibrium equations for a rigid body: [latex]\sum F_x=0\;\sum F_y=0\;\sum M_z=0[/latex]

is split into two to solve for F E .

For this example, you could choose the right half or left half. For some problems, being strategic is necessary otherwise you need to make multiple cuts. In this problem you had to solve for the reaction forces first, but that isn’t always the case as you can sometimes just make the cut (see example 2 below).

Here are more examples of how to make a cut and showing the naming convention:

Source: Internal Forces in Beams and Frames, Libretexts. https://eng.libretexts.org/Bookshelves/Civil_Engineering/Book%3A_Structural_Analysis_(Udoeyo)/01%3A_Chapters/1.05%3A_Internal_Forces_in_Plane_Trusses

Here is a detailed explanation:

The  method of sections  is a process used to solve for the unknown forces acting on members of a  truss . The method involves breaking the truss down into individual sections and analyzing each section as a separate rigid body. The method of sections is usually the fastest and easiest way to determine the unknown forces acting in a specific member of the truss.

Using This Method:

The process used in the method of sections is outlined below:

  • Any external reaction or load forces that may be acting at the section.
  • An internal force in each member that was cut when splitting the truss into sections. Remember that for a two force member, the force will be acting along the line between the two connection points on the member. We will also need to guess if it will be a tensile or a compressive force. An incorrect guess now though will simply lead to a negative solution later on. A common strategy then is to assume all forces are tensile, then later in the solution any positive forces will be tensile forces and any negative forces will be compressive forces.
  • You will have three possible equations for each section, two force equations and one moment equation.$$\sum\vec F=0\; \; \sum\vec M=0\\\sum F_x=0\; \; \sum F_y=0\; \; \sum M_z=0$$
  • Finally, solve the equilibrium equations for the unknowns. You can do this algebraically, solving for one variable at a time, or you can use matrix equations to solve for everything at once. If you assumed that all forces were tensile earlier, remember that negative answers indicate compressive forces in the members.

Source:Engineering Mechanics, Jacob Moore, et al. http://mechanicsmap.psu.edu/websites/5_structures/5-5_method_of_sections/methodofsections.html

Additional examples from the Engineering Mechanics webpage :

Find the forces acting on members BD and CE. Be sure to indicate if the forces are tensile or compressive.

Source: Engineering Mechanics, Jacob Moore, et al. http://mechanicsmap.psu.edu/websites/5_structures/5-5_method_of_sections/pdf/MethodOfSections_WorkedExample1.pdf

Find the forces acting on members AC, BC, and BD of the truss. Be sure to indicate if the forces are tensile or compressive.

If we make a cut in the top section, we don’t need to solve for the reaction forces.

Source: Engineering Mechanics, Jacob Moore, et al.  http://mechanicsmap.psu.edu/websites/5_structures/5-5_method_of_sections/pdf/MethodOfSections_WorkedExample2.pdf

Even more examples are available at: https://eng.libretexts.org/Bookshelves/Civil_Engineering/Book%3A_Structural_Analysis_(Udoeyo)/01%3A_Chapters/1.05%3A_Internal_Forces_in_Plane_Trusses

In summary:

Key Takeaways

Basically : Method of sections is an analysis technique to find the forces in some members of a truss. It separates the truss into two sections then uses the rigid body equilibrium equations.

Application : To calculate the loads on bridges and roofs, especially if you need to know only one or two of the members.

Looking Ahead : The next section explores a trick that makes solving faster, especially for method of joints.

Engineering Mechanics: Statics Copyright © by Libby (Elizabeth) Osgood; Gayla Cameron; Emma Christensen; Analiya Benny; and Matthew Hutchison is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License , except where otherwise noted.

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The Method of Sections

The method of sections is a process used to solve for the unknown forces acting on members of a truss . The method involves cutting the truss into individual sections and analyzing each section as a separate rigid body. Where the method of joints is the fastest way to find the forces in all members, the method of sections is usually the fastest and easiest way to determine the unknown forces acting in a specific member of the truss.

Using the Method of Sections:

The method of sections and the method of joints both have the same initial steps, but will differ from one another once the external forces are found. The process used in the method of sections is outlined below.

To start, if the joints are not already labeled, we will begin by labeling all the joints with a letter. The exact order you label the joints in are not important, so long as you are consistent in your work. We will refer to joints by their letter (A, B, C...) and we will refer to the members by the two joints they connect (AB, AC, BC...). As a note, this text will always arrange the member names alphabetically, in order to avoid confusion (member AB, rather than member BA)

The second step is to solve for the external reaction forces supporting the truss. We can sometimes skip this step if the reaction forces are not necessary to solve for the internal forces, but when in doubt it is better to solve for the external reaction forces up front. To do this, treat the whole truss as a single rigid body. Draw a free body diagram of the truss, including the load forces and the external reaction forces supporting the truss, write out your equilibrium equations (sum of forces in the x, sum of forces in the y, and sum of moments), and finally solve the equilibrium equations for the unknown reaction forces.

Next, to get to the heart of the method of sections, you will imagine cutting your truss into two separate sections. This cut should only travel through members (don't cut at a joint) and should cut through the member (or members) that you are trying to solve for. We should also try and minimize the number of members we cut though, limiting ourselves to a maximum of three members for a two dimensional problem.

After determining the cut you want to use, you will next draw a free body diagram of one half of the truss . This can be the half on either side of the cut you define, though choosing the side with fewer external reaction forces acting on it will generally make analysis easier. When drawing the free body diagram of this section be sure to include and label all known and unknown forces the forces acting on that section.

The known forces will be all load forces and external reaction forces acting on the half of the truss we are analyzing. Load or reaction forces acting on the other half of the truss should not be included on the free body diagram.

The unknown forces in the free body diagram should be the forces carried by the members that we cut through. As the members are all two force members, we will draw in one single tensile force for each member we cut through. This force will act along the line of the member itself. Just as with the method of joints, we do not know if the members are in tension or compression. However, if we assume tension then positive answers indicate the member is actually in tension while negative numbers indicate the member is in compression.

In the free body diagram, make sure you label all forces, and indicate important angles and dimensions.

Next you will want to write out the equilibrium equations for the section you just drew. These will be rigid bodies, so you will need to write out the force and the moment equations.

For 2D problems you will have three possible equations for each section, two force equations and one moment equation.

For 3D problems you will have six possible equations for each section, three force equations and three moment equations.

Finally, solve the equilibrium equations for the unknowns. You can do this algebraically, solving for one variable at a time, or you can use an equation solver to solve for everything at once. If you assumed that all forces were tensile earlier, remember that negative answers indicate compressive forces in the members.

Extending the Method of Sections:

In some cases, you will need to determine the forces acting in a few members of a truss, but you will find that there is no one cut you can make with the method of sections that goes through all the members you need to solve for. In cases such as this, the method of sections may not be enough, but solving for everything with the method of joints may be overkill. In these cases, we may resort to one of the two following strategies to extend the method of sections beyond it's base process.

The first strategy we can use to extend the method of sections is to simply make a second cut and employ the method of sections again. In this strategy, start by using the method of sections normally to solve for some of the forces we are looking for. After making this first cut, we will repeat the process with a second cut, making sure to cut through the rest of the members that we wish to solve for in this second cut. Additionally, this second cut can travel through more than three members, so long as it does not travel through three unsolved members. Anything we solved for in the first round can be treated as a known value, and does not need to be solved for again.

The second strategy to extend the method of sections, is to start with the method of sections, then to use the method of joints to work out from the initial cut. In this strategy, start by using the method of sections normally to solve for some of the forces we are looking for. After making the initial cut, we will switch to the method of joints, by picking a joint near the cut for analysis. For each joint we choose, just make sure there are no more than two unknowns to solve for. Continue analyzing joints until you have all the unknown forces you are looking for.

Video Lecture

Worked Problems:

Question 1:.

Use the method of sections to find the forces acting on members BD and CE. Be sure to indicate if the forces are tensile or compressive.

Question 2:

Use the method of sections to find the forces acting on members AC, BC, and BD of the truss. Be sure to indicate if the forces are tensile or compressive.

Question 3:

Use the method of sections to find the forces in members AB and DE. Be sure to indicate if the forces are tensile or compressive.

Question 4:

Use the method of sections to find the forces in members AC, BC, CD, and CE. Be sure to indicate if the forces are tensile or compressive.

Practice Problems:

Practice problem 1:, practice problem 2:, practice problem 3:.

method sections truss

Resources for Structural Engineers and Engineering Students

>>When you're done reading this section, check your understanding with the interactive quiz at the bottom of the page.

The method of sections is an alternative to the method of joints for finding the internal axial forces in truss members. It works by cutting through the whole truss at a single section and using global equilibrium (3 equations in 2D) to solve for the unknown axial forces in the members that cross the cut section. Since there are only three global equilibrium equations, we can only solve for three unknown member axial forces at a time using the method of sections. This process is similar to cutting a beam at a section to find the internal forces at that section.

The primary benefit of the method of sections is that, for a determinate truss, you can find the force in any individual member quickly without having to solve through the entire truss one joint at a time (which you must do when using the method of joints).

To perform a 2D determinate truss analysis using the method of sections, follow these steps:

  • Check that the truss is determinate and stable using the methods from Chapter 2 .
  • Calculate the support reactions for the truss using equilibrium methods as discussed in Section 3.4 .
  • Select an appropriate section that cuts through the member that you want to find the axial force for. The section must cut completely through the truss and should cut through no more than three members. In special circumstances, four member cuts may be made (as will be shown in the example).
  • Choose one of the cut pieces, the cut structure on the one side of the cut or the other (preferably the one with the least number of external loads).
  • Use a free body diagram (FBD) of the cut piece to solve for the unknown internal axial forces in the members that cross the cut.

Example - Method of Sections

method sections truss

The truss shown in Figure 3.9  has external forces and boundary conditions provided. We must find the internal axial forces in the specific truss members AB, AD, DF and FG.

This is a simple truss that is simply supported (with pin at one end and a roller at the other). From Section 2.5 :

Therefore, the truss is determinate. There is also no internal instability, and therefore the truss is stable.

Start with the moment equilibrium around point J:

Vertical equilibrium:

Horizontal equilibrium:

The obvious choice for a cut is section a-a as shown in Figure 3.9 , because it cuts through all of the members that we are trying to find axial forces for; however, the problem is that this section has four members, which we cannot calculate directly using only our three equilibrium equations. So, we need a way to cut down the number of unknown forces at section a-a from four to three.

To do this, we need to find a way to cut the truss such that we include one of the unknown forces from a-a, but which is also cut in a way that we can directly solve for that unknown force. For this problem, one way to do this is by cutting at section b-b as shown in Figure 3.9 . This section shares member AB with the other section a-a. But, this section (b-b) still cuts through four members, meaning that we can't solve for all of the internal axial forces in those cut members either. So, how does this help us?

We cut section b-b in such a way that, even though we cannot solve for all four of the member forces across the cut, we can still solve for one of them (AB) by using the moment equilibrium equation. This is because the other three members at that cut (BD, EG, and GH) are all coincident through point G. This means that if we take a moment equilibrium around point G, then none of these member forces will contribute to the equilibrium, leaving only the force in AB, which can then be found easily. Once we know the force in member AB, we are left with only three unknown forces across the section cut a-a, which we can solve using only equilibrium. So, we will start with section b-b to find $F_{AB}$ which we will then use in section a-a to find the forces in the other three members.

For section cut b-b, we will look at the piece of the structure to the right of cut b-b as shown in Figure 3.10 . It makes sense to choose this side because it does not have any external forces and it has only one reaction component $I_y$. This will make the equilibrium equations less complicated. The solution will work the same if you choose the other side of the cut, but it will just be more work. When we go back to section cut a-a, we will look at the section to the right of the cut as well for the same reason.

method sections truss

For a simpler problem, only one cut would be needed if the section had only three members crossing the cut. For this problem, as previously described, we need to make two cuts and solve the equilibrium equations twice: once to find the force in member AB using section b-b and again to find the rest of the forces in the other members that cross section a-a.

The free body diagram for the cut section to the right of section b-b is shown in Figure 3.10 . All of the unknown member forces across the cut are shown, and are assumed to be in tension (pulling away from the member). Although joint G is not within the cut section, it is left in the drawing as a reference point for the moment equilibrium. As mentioned previously, the point of this cut is only to find the force in member AB ($F_{AB}$). This section was chosen deliberately because the other three forces ($F_{BG}$, $F_{EG}$, and $F_{GH}$) all point direction through point G. So, if we evaluate the moment equilibrium about point G, we can solve directly for $F_{AB}$:

which is negative, meaning that the member is actually in compression.

Note that the right arrow ($\rightarrow$) here is relative to the cut member end. If we looked at the equilibrium around point B, the force $F_{AB}$ would still push towards the joint (to the right). But, if we were looking at the equilibrium around joint A, the force $F_{AB}$ would push in the other direction (to the left). Therefore, for truss members, it is often more convenient to think of the forces in terms of tension or compression instead of in terms of a specific direction. Tension forces always pull away from joints and members, compression forces always push towards joints and members.

Now that we know the value and direction of the internal axial force in member AB, we can go back to the primary cut section a-a and use equilibrium to find the rest of the forces. The free body diagram for the cut section to the right of section b-b is shown in Figure 3.11 .

method sections truss

As before, even though points A and F are not within the section cut, they are left in the diagram as reference points. The angle $\theta$ may be found using trigonometry:

Since we $F_{DF}$ and $F_{FG}$ both point directly through point F, we can use a moment equilibrium around point F to find the third unknown force $F_{AD}$:

The moment arm for $F_{AD}$ in the moment equilibrium above was found using the geometry shown on the right side of Figure 3.11 . The moment arm, as described previously in Section 1.2 , is the perpendicular distance of force from the centre of rotation (in this case point F). For this problem, the moment arm for $F_{AD}$ is equal to $(6\mathrm{\,m})(\cos \theta)$.

The remaining unknowns may be found using vertical and horizontal equilibrium:

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Engineering Statics: Open and Interactive

Daniel W. Baker, William Haynes

Section 6.5 Method of Sections

Key questions.

  • How do we determine an appropriate section to cut through a truss?
  • How are equilibrium equations applied to a section?

Subsection 6.5.1 Procedure

  • Determine if a truss can be modeled as a simple truss .
  • Identify and eliminate all zero-force members . Removing zero-force members is not required but may eliminate unnecessary computations.
  • Solve for the external reactions, if necessary. Reactions will be necessary if the reaction forces act on the section of the truss you choose to solve below.
  • Use your imaginary chain saw to cut the truss into two pieces by cutting through some or all of the members you are interested in. The cut does not need to be a straight line. Every cut member exposes an unknown internal force, so if you cut three members you’ll expose three unknowns. Exposing more than three members is not advised because you create more unknowns than available equilibrium equations.
  • Include all applied and reaction forces acting on the section, and show known forces acting in their known directions.
  • Draw unknown forces in assumed directions and label them. A common practice is to assume that all unknown forces are in tension and label them based on the endpoints of the member they represent.
  • Write out and solve the equilibrium equations for your chosen section. If you assumed that unknown forces were tensile, negative answers indicate compression.
  • If you have not found all the required forces with one section cut, repeat the process using another imaginary cut or proceed with the method of joints if it is more convenient.

Instructions .

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Analysis Of Trusses By Method Of Sections

Analysis Of Trusses By Method Of Sections

  • Author : --> Farhan Khan
  • --> Posted On : April 29, 2020
  • Updated On : April 29, 2020

If only a few of the member forces are of interest, and those members happen to be somewhere in the middle of the truss, it would be very inefficient to use the method of joints to solve for them. In such cases, method of sections is used. In the method of joints, we are dealing with static equilibrium at a point. This limits the static equilibrium equations to just the two force equations.

A section has finite size and this means you can also use moment equations to solve the problem. This allows solving for up to three unknown forces at a time . Since the method of sections allows solving for up to three unknown forces at a time, you should choose sections that involve cutting through no more than three members at a time.

Table of Contents

If a truss is in equilibrium, then whichever section of the truss being considered must also be in equilibrium. The Method of Sections involves analytically cutting the truss into sections and solving for static equilibrium for each section. The sections are obtained by cutting through some of the members of the truss to expose the force inside the members.

Since truss members are subjected to only tensile or compressive forces along their length, the internal forces at the cut member will also be either tensile or compressive with the same magnitude. This result is based on the equilibrium principle and Newton’s third law.

Procedure for Analysis

  • Decide how you need to “cut” the truss. This is based on: a) where you need to determine forces, and, b) where the total number of unknowns does not exceed three (in general).
  • Decide which side of the cut truss will be easier to work with (minimize the number of reactions you have to find).
  • If required, determine the necessary support reactions by drawing the FBD of the entire truss and applying the equations of equilibrium (E-of-E).
  • Draw the FBD of the selected part of the cut truss.
  • We need to indicate the unknown forces at the cut members. Initially we may assume all the members are in tension, as we did when using the method of joints.
  • Upon solving, if the answer is positive, the member is in tension as per our assumption. If the answer is negative, the member must be in compression. (Please note that you can also assume forces to be either tension or compression by inspection as was done in the figures above.)
  • Apply the E-of-E to the selected cut section of the truss to solve for the unknown member forces. Please note that in most cases it is possible to write one equation to solve for one unknown directly.

Steps involved in Method of Sections

Identify the section 1-1 which passes through the members whose forces are required and note that the section is not passing through more than three members. For example, to find force in members FH and GI consider the section 1-1 as shown.

Method of Sections

Using equations of equilibrium, find the reactions (VA, HA and VL)

Using this section 1-1, separate the truss into two parts. The free body diagram of both the parts is drawn.

One of the two parts of the truss obtained after the intersected members have been cut may be used as free body

Method of Sections truss analysis

Select the portion of free body where the member of forces are minimum. Hence the right part of free body is selected as it involves five forces only (PHF, PIF, PIG, VL and F4). But the left part involves eight forces (VA, HA,F1, F2, F3, PFH, PFI,PGI). Assume all the member forces are tensile.

portion of free body where the member of forces are minimum

Use the equations of equilibrium ΣFx = 0 : ΣFy = 0 and ΣM = 0 and find forces in members HF, FI, and CI. If positive values are obtained, the members are in tension. If the force in member becomes negative, the nature of force assumed is not correct. Hence it is modified to be compression. These steps are illustrated in numerical examples.

About the sense of forces, you can always choose to draw an unknown force as tension. Then if it comes out minus I know it is compression. This is common practice but not the eleventh commandment.

Practical Example

Determine the force in members CD, CH, and GH, and state whether the force is tension or compression.

the force in members CD, CH, and GH, and state whether the force is tension or compression

Step 1 (Cutting the Section)

Cut the sections in which you want to find the forces.

Cut the sections in which you want to find the forces.

Free-body diagram of portion of truss to right of section

Free-body diagram of portion of truss to right of section

At each cut through a member, a force is shown Their direction helps us find the forces.

Step 4 (Equilibrium Equations)

Equations of equilibrium for the portion of the truss:

Equilibrium Equations

Three equations but four unknown so another equation is needed.

Step 5 (Trigonometry)

Trigonometry

Step 6 (FBD)

Free-body diagram of entire truss

Free-body diagram of entire truss

Step 7 (Fourth Equation)

Equilibrium equation for en tire truss. This will give the needed fourth equation.

Equilibrium equation for entire truss

Step 8 (Final Result)

Equilibrium equation for entire truss

Farhan is a highly experienced civil engineer from the Southern side of Texas and has been associated with ConstructionHow since 2020. Over almost a decade, his wide span of expertise enabled him to bring forth his fair share of stories and experiences related to the most iconic engineering examples worldwide. He has also contributed to online and offline publications on requests. Engineering is his passion, which is why he chose to become part of our honorable team of industry experts looking to provide authentic and credible guidelines to the reader.

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Method of sections to solve a truss.

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method sections truss

Contributed by: Rachael L. Baumann   (September 2017) Additional contributions by: John L. Falconer (University of Colorado Boulder, Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering) Open content licensed under CC BY-NC-SA

method sections truss

The method of sections is used to calculate the forces in each member of the truss. This is done by making a "cut" along three selected members. First, calculate the reactions at the supports. Taking the sum of the moments at the left support:

method sections truss

Begin solving for the forces of the members by making cuts. The order of the balances listed here is the order in which they should be solved. Force balances are done assuming we can figure out which members are under tension and which are under compression. A labeled truss is shown in Figure 1.

method sections truss

Note that all the vertical members are zero members, which means they exert a force of 0 kN and are neither a tension nor a compression force; instead they are at rest.

method sections truss

[1] SkyCiv Cloud Engineering Software. "Tutorial to Solve Truss by Method of Sections." (Aug 18, 2017) skyciv.com/tutorials/tutorial-to-solve-truss-by-method-of-sections .

Related Links

  • Cremona Diagram for Truss Analysis
  • Analysis of Forces on a Truss

Permanent Citation

Rachael L. Baumann "Method of Sections to Solve a Truss" http://demonstrations.wolfram.com/MethodOfSectionsToSolveATruss/ Wolfram Demonstrations Project Published: September 8 2017

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Related Topics

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Statics/Method of Sections

The method of sections is another method to determine forces in members of a truss structure. In order to find unknown forces in using the method of sections, sections of the truss structure must be isolated. The net force on the entire isolated section must be zero since the isolated section does not move (if it did move it wouldn't be a statics problem). This method is often faster because instead of moving from joint to joint with the method of joints, the members of interest can be immediately isolated.

Example 1 [ edit | edit source ]

Question [ edit | edit source ].

The truss pictured to the right is secured with pin mounts to the brown concrete block. A 100kg mass is hanging from the rightmost joint. For simplicity the weight of the trusses in the structure can be ignored. Calculate the compression in member A-B.

Answer [ edit | edit source ]

This problem could be solved using the method of joints, but you would have to start at the joint above the weight then solve many other joints between the first joint and member A-B. The fifth joint solved would give member A-B's loading. It is easier using the method of sections.

The method of joints isolates a joint to find unknown forces. The method of sections is the same except an entire section is isolated. It should be obvious at this point that there cannot be any net force or moment on the section, if there was the section would move.

In order to find the stress in member A-B it is convenient to isolate the section of the truss as indicated by the image to the left. In problems where the method of joints was used, a joint was isolated by cutting surrounding members. Cutting is also used to isolate a section, three of the members of the truss were cut to isolate the section in this example. Because all cut members were part of a truss, all members supported an axial force of tension or compression. After being cut, all members must have the same axial force applied to support the section.

Equilibrium equations can now be written.

{\displaystyle \sum F_{x}=0=-T_{1}-T_{2}\cos(60)-T_{3}}

The equation summing forces in the Y direction only has one unknown because all cut members except A-B are horizontal.

{\displaystyle \ 981N=T_{2}\sin(60)}

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  • Problem 003-ms | Method of Sections

Problem 003-ms The truss in Fig. T-04 is pinned to the wall at point F, and supported by a roller at point C. Calculate the force (tension or compression) in members BC, BE, and DE.  

Solution 003-ms

$\frac{5}{\sqrt{29}}F_{BE} = 80 + 60$

$F_{BE} = 150.78 \, \text{ kN tension}$           answer  

$\Sigma M_E = 0$

$5F_{BC} = 6(80) + 2(60)$

$F_{BC} = 120 \, \text{ kN compression}$           answer  

$\Sigma M_B = 0$

$5F_{DE} = 4(80)$

$F_{DE} = 64 \, \text{ kN tension}$           answer

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Engineering mechanics.

  • Principles of Statics
  • Equilibrium of Force System
  • Method of Joints | Analysis of Simple Trusses
  • Problem 001-ms | Method of Sections
  • Problem 002-ms | Method of Sections
  • Problem 004-ms | Method of Sections
  • Problem 005-ms | Method of Sections
  • Problem 417 - Roof Truss by Method of Sections
  • Problem 418 - Warren Truss by Method of Sections
  • Problem 419 - Warren Truss by Method of Sections
  • Problem 420 - Howe Truss by Method of Sections
  • Problem 421 - Cantilever Truss by Method of Sections
  • Problem 422 - Right-triangular Truss by Method of Sections
  • Problem 423 - Howe Roof Truss by Method of Sections
  • Problem 424 - Method of Joints Checked by Method of Sections
  • Problem 425 - Fink Truss by Method of Sections
  • Problem 426 - Fink Truss by Method of Sections
  • Problem 427 - Interior Members of Nacelle Truss by Method of Sections
  • Problem 428 - Howe Truss by Method of Sections
  • Problem 429 - Cantilever Truss by Method of Sections
  • Problem 430 - Parker Truss by Method of Sections
  • Problem 431 - Members in the Third Panel of a Parker Truss
  • Problem 432 - Force in Members of a Truss by Method of Sections
  • Problem 433 - Scissors Truss by Method of Sections
  • Problem 434 - Scissors Truss by Method of Sections
  • Problem 435 - Transmission Tower by Method of Sections
  • Problem 436 - Howe Truss With Counter Braces
  • Problem 437 - Truss With Counter Diagonals
  • Problem 438 - Truss With Redundant Members
  • Method of Members | Frames Containing Three-Force Members
  • Centroids and Centers of Gravity
  • Moment of Inertia and Radius of Gyration
  • Force Systems in Space

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Demolition crews cutting into first pieces of Baltimore bridge as ship remains in rubble

Editor's Note: This page is a summary of news on the Baltimore bridge collapse for Sunday, March 31. For the latest news, view our story for Monday, April 1 .

Demolition crews were cutting into portions of the Francis Scott Key Bridge's collapsed truss Sunday and an enormous container ship remained trapped underneath the rubble, five days after the collision that killed six people, forced a shutdown of the Port of Baltimore and halted shipping traffic through one of the nation's most crucial ports.

The Unified Command, including the Coast Guard and Maryland officials, said Sunday that two massive cranes were "actively working on scene" while another land-based crane was positioned to help offload and process the wreckage at a nearby industrial port. Three dive teams were surveying submerged sections of the wreckage in the murky waters of the Patapsco River.

"The removed wreckage is being lifted and transferred to a barge as daylight allows," the Unified Command said in a news release Sunday.

The Unified Command is also coordinating with Baltimore Gas and Electric to reduce the pressure of the underwater natural gas pipeline, which "spans the width of the channel and runs under the incident site."

Four bridge workers remained missing and presumed dead following Tuesday's catastrophe, when the Singapore-flagged container ship Dali, more than three football fields long, slammed into the bridge. Two other victims were recovered from the site Wednesday.

In recent days, hazardous weather conditions and the collapse wreckage have made it impossible for divers to continue recovery operations for the four remaining bodies, according to Maryland Gov. Wes Moore.

Tom Perez, senior adviser and assistant to President Joe Biden, said Sunday that the president's plans to visit the area were still being worked out. He called the salvage operation a "Herculean undertaking" vital to minimizing the national supply-chain disruption caused by the collapse.

"The Port of Baltimore will be back," Perez told MSNBC's "The Weekend." "The president has said this. We're going to move heaven and earth to make sure we rebuild the bridge, we clear out the debris as soon as possible, so that we can minimize these disruptions."

Temporary channel to be established for essential vessels

Crews are preparing to establish a temporary, alternate channel on the northeast side of the main channel for commercially essential vessels, according to the Unified Command.

“This will mark an important first step along the road to reopening the port of Baltimore,” Capt. David O’Connell, federal on-scene coordinator for the Key Bridge response, said in a statement Sunday. “By opening this alternate route, we will support the flow of marine traffic into Baltimore.”

The temporary channel is part of a "phased approach" to opening the main channel, the Unified Command said. It will be marked with aids to navigation and will have a depth of 11 feet, a 264-foot horizontal clearance, and a vertical clearance of 96 feet.

The 2,000-yard safety zone around the Francis Scott Key Bridge site remains in effect to protect personnel, vessels, and the marine environment, according to the Unified Command.

No timeline for removal of bridge rubble and ship

Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg said Sunday that the Army Corps of Engineers doesn't want to speculate on a timeline for repairs until damage to the underwater infrastructure can be fully assessed. After that a clearer picture of the supply chain issues will emerge, he said.

"What we do know is that we need to get this port back open as soon as possible, deal with the supply-chain applications in the meantime and get that bridge back up as soon as possible and deal with the traffic implications," Buttigieg on MSNBC's "Velshi ."

Gov. Moore calls for 'speedy' investigation, accountability

Moore on Sunday stressed the need for a thorough investigation into the cause of the disaster and for accountability. The ship's operators made a mayday call moments before the crash saying the container ship had lost power.

The National Transportation Safety Board said its probe will include a study of information from the ship's black boxes.

"There needs to be an ongoing investigation as to what happened," Moore said on " Fox News Sunday ." "I want that investigation to be speedy. And for anyone who needs to be held accountable to be held accountable."

The port handles more cars, heavy trucks and agriculture equipment than any other port "inside this country," making its reopening a "national imperative," he said.

"Not because anyone is trying to do Maryland a favor," Moore said. "It’s because the national economy relies on the port of Baltimore being up and running."

The governor also urged Congress to pass the federal funding needed for rebuilding the bridge and port economy. The Biden administration approved $60 million in initial emergency aid on Thursday to assist clean-up operations and help reopen the port, which has been closed since the collapse.

How Francis Scott Key Bridge was lost: A minute-by-minute visual analysis of the collapse

22-member Dali crew remains aboard the battered ship

The 22-member crew of the Dali, made up of Indian nationals, has remained on board since the Tuesday incident . They monitored engineering spaces and will "appropriately respond to any emergency on board," Coast Guard spokesperson Cynthia Oldham told USA TODAY. The ship and its cargo of 4,679 containers were  headed for Sri Lanka  from Baltimore, a journey that would have taken about four weeks, so the crew has supplies to last that long. 

The ship's manager, Synergy Marine Group, said its emergency response team was on the ground in Baltimore and coordinating with authorities on all stages of recovery and remediation efforts.

"The ship managers have activated their mental health team to provide trauma counseling for crew members feeling distressed, and that service will continue," Synergy said in a statement.

Dali crew still confined to ship: With no internet, the crew could be 'profoundly rattled'

Temporary channel could expedite cleanup, shipping

Moore said Saturday that a section of the bridge's steel superstructure north of the crash site would be cut up and lifted by crane onto a barge and removed. A temporary channel can then be opened to allow some ships to access the area and "accelerate our recovery." He did not provide a timeline but warned that "it's not going to take hours, it's not going to take days."

A section of the bridge's superstructure remains across the bow of the Dali that lost power before hitting the bridge. It was not clear when the ship would be moved, he said, adding that it was damaged but that its hull remained intact.

Baker says he was among last to cross bridge before disaster

Maryland baker Larry Desantis says be believes he was one of the last people to flee the bridge in the moments before its devastating collapse. Desantis works at Herman's bakery in Dundalk, about 3 miles from the bridge. He told ABC News he drove over the bridge daily for 16 years, and drove over it at about 1:27 a.m. on Tuesday. A barge slammed into the bridge at 1:29 a.m.

"If I had been one minute later, I wouldn’t be here," Desantis said.

Latino communities 'rebuilt' Baltimore: Now they're grieving bridge collapse victims

He said he and a coworker often chat for a few minutes after work, but they didn't on Tuesday night.

"If we had done that, I may not be here today," he said.

Contributing: Reuters

To revisit this article, visit My Profile, then View saved stories .

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Chris Baraniuk

Why the Baltimore Bridge Collapsed So Quickly

The steel frame of the Francis Scott Key Bridge sits on top of a container ship after the bridge collapsed Baltimore...

Just shy of half past 1 in the morning, the MV Dali , a giant container ship, was sailing gently out of the port of Baltimore when something went terribly wrong. Suddenly, lights all over the 300-meter-long vessel went out. They flicked on again a moment later, but the ship then began to veer to the right, toward one of the massive pylon-like supports on the Francis Scott Key truss bridge—a huge mass of steel and concrete that spans the Patapsco River.

The Dali ’s lights went out a second time. Then the impact came. The ship plowed into the support, with large sections of the bridge’s main truss section instantly snapping apart and falling into the river. It took just 20 seconds or so for the structure to come down.

Now, a major US port is in disarray, and several people who were working on the bridge at the time of its collapse are missing. A rescue operation is underway. President Biden has called the disaster a “terrible accident.” Ship traffic is currently stuck on either side of the crash site, and a major roadway through Baltimore has been cut off.

“It’s a dreadful tragedy and something you hope never to see,” says David Knight, a bridge expert and specialist adviser to the UK’s Institution of Civil Engineers. But commenting on footage of the bridge collapse , he says he is not surprised by the manner in which it crumpled.

Large steel structures may seem invulnerable, but steel, explains Knight, is relatively lightweight for its size. As soon as it is pushed or pulled the wrong way with enough force, it can fold like paper. In this case, the Francis Scott Key Bridge was a “continuous,” or unjointed, bridge that had a 366-meter-long central truss section. (Truss bridges use steel beams, arranged in triangular shapes, to support their load.) The central truss was made up of three horizontal stretches, known as spans, with two sets of supports holding these above the water. It was the third-largest structure of its kind in the world.

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“When you take a support away, there is very little in the way of robustness,” says Knight. “It will drag down, as we saw, all three spans.” The separate approach spans remain standing. There is nothing in Knight’s view that immediately suggests any structural problem with the bridge. An engineering firm, Hardesty & Hanover, confirmed to WIRED that it performed an inspection of the bridge in 2019, and that other inspections have been carried out since, but did not provide any additional details on the state of the structure. WIRED has approached H&H for further comment. In June last year, the US Federal Highway Administration rated the condition of the bridge as satisfactory .

The immense force of the container ship impact should not be underestimated, adds Knight. Such vessels require a lot of power and time—perhaps many minutes—to come to a complete stop. The Francis Scott Key Bridge was completed in 1977. In more recent decades, bridge engineers have commonly incorporated defenses to reduce the potential damage by ship strikes when bridges are erected in similar locations, Knight says. These include hydraulic barriers and additional concrete around the base of bridge supports, for instance. However, even with such fortifications in place, heavy strikes can still cause devastating damage.

It is not clear why lights turned off and on again on the Dali , a Singapore-flagged ship built in 2015. “That is an indication of a massive problem,” says Salvatore Mercogliano, a maritime historian at Campbell University in North Carolina and a YouTuber who has analyzed the crash .

At the time of the accident, two pilots—mariners who board a ship to help it navigate particular stretches of water, including in and out of ports—from Baltimore were on board. The Dali was broadcasting its position publicly via the automatic identification system (AIS) and was traveling at a speed of over 8.5 knots. It then slowed to around 6 knots in the moments before the crash, according to AIS data .

Both pilots and all crew members on the Dali are accounted for. There are no reports of injuries, the ship’s management company, Synergy Group, said in a statement on March 26.

ABC News reports that the crew of the vessel made a desperate mayday call in an attempt to warn transport officials that the crash was about to occur. A report from the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency, seen by ABC, says the Dali “lost propulsion” and that the crew were aware they had “lost control” of the ship. Maryland governor Wes Moore told reporters that , thanks to the mayday call, officials were able to stem the flow of traffic over the bridge, an intervention that he says “saved lives.”

Mercogliano says it is very difficult for ships of this size to make rapid adjustments to their trajectories. Video footage shows a sudden outpouring of smoke from the vessel’s stack, indicating a change in engine activity of some kind. What is particularly disturbing is that, in this case, the vessel ends up plowing straight into one of the key supports for the bridge, clearly off course. No information as to why this happened has become public.

Photographs of the aftermath show the bow of the ship pinned beneath fallen sections of the bridge . The anchor chain is visible, meaning that at some point the anchor was dropped, though it is not certain whether this happened before or after impact. The chain appears to be at an angle, however, which Mercogliano says could be a sign that it was dropped shortly before the crash and dragged for a brief time.

Lawyer James Turner of Quadrant Chambers in London specializes in, among other things, ship collisions. He says that there would have been no automated systems on board a merchant ship of this kind able to prevent the impact. Information from radar, AIS, and visual observations would have been available to the crew, however.

But data-collecting systems may now reveal exactly what happened. As on airplanes, commercial ships have data and audio recorders on the bridge, which are often a key source of information for investigators post-incident. “The master will hit a button and that ensures that the last two hours of audio recording are preserved, as well as all the data from the various parts of the ship, like the engine and steering and so on,” explains Turner. “That can be downloaded and queried.”

He adds that estimates of the ship’s speed at the time of the incident as recorded by AIS are likely “99.99 percent accurate.”

For now, the focus of responders will be on locating survivors from the fallen bridge. Two people have been rescued, one of whom is in the hospital. Six construction workers remain missing .

The disaster has come at a difficult time for shipping, with drought afflicting the Panama Canal and Houthi attacks striking multiple vessels in the Red Sea in recent months. Somali piracy is on the rise again , also. The grounding of the Ever Given in the Suez Canal is very much still within recent memory—it occurred a mere three years ago.

The Port of Baltimore insists in a statement that it has not been shut down—road vehicles are still operating within the port—however, all ship traffic in and out is suspended until further notice. AIS data reveals around a dozen commercial vessels at anchor outside the port, their entry now blocked by the stricken bridge and the Dali . It will take some time for the US Army Corps of Engineers to remove the steel pieces of the bridge, which present a significant threat to passing vessels, from the river.

“Whatever ships are in the port are now stuck,” says Mercogliano, who notes that Baltimore is an important port in terms of car deliveries and coal exports.

Overall, he argues, maritime operations are extremely safe today, though the volume and velocity of trade mean that when things go wrong it can be especially serious.

“We move goods a lot faster than ever before, and there’s very little margin for error,” he says. “When there is a mistake, the mistakes tend to be very large.”

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Crews at Site of Bridge Collapse Work on Removing First Piece of Debris

The governor of Maryland said that the search for missing victims would resume when the conditions for divers improve.

  • Share full article

A worker aboard a small boat wearing a yellow vest and a white hard hat.

By Edgar Sandoval

Crews in Baltimore on Saturday were working on pulling the first piece of wreckage out of the water after the collapse of the Francis Scott Key Bridge, a tangible sign of progress in the daunting effort to reopen the busy waterway.

Rear Adm. Shannon Gilreath of the U.S. Coast Guard said at a news conference that his crew was aiming to lift the first segment of the bridge “just north of that deep draft shipping channel.” He added, “Much like when you run a marathon, you’ve got to take the first few steps.”

The bridge was a critical transportation link to one of the largest ports in the United States, and the collapse is costing the region and the country millions of dollars the longer it is out of operation. More than 8,000 workers on the docks have been directly affected, Gov. Wes Moore of Maryland said.

Mr. Moore said cutting up and removing the north sections of the bridge “will eventually allow us to open up a temporary restricted channel that will help us to get more vessels in the water around the site of the collapse.”

Officials overseeing the cleanup added on Saturday that salvage teams will use gas-powered cutters to systematically separate sections of the steel bridge, which will then be taken to a disposal site.

The work was occurring less than a week after a giant container ship known as the Dali suffered a complete blackout and struck the bridge, killing six construction workers and bringing the bridge down into the Patapsco River.

The remains of two of the men have been recovered, but the search for the others who were presumed dead ended after officials concluded that the conditions were too dangerous for divers to try to find them.

On Saturday, Mr. Moore said officials have not forgotten about searching for the missing victims, all immigrants from Mexico and Central America. “As soon as those conditions change,” the appropriate authorities have assured him, “those rescue divers will be going right back in the water.”

The disaster has cast a particularly dark cloud over the growing Hispanic community in and around Baltimore, where communities such as Highlandtown, Dundalk and Glen Burnie have been transformed by waves of immigrants from Latin America. All of the victims had taken the often perilous job of fixing potholes and maintaining the bridge.

The authorities, relatives and advocacy groups that cater to the Latino community have identified at least five of the victims: Jose López, who was in his 30s; Alejandro Hernandez Fuentes, 35, of Baltimore; Dorlian Ronial Castillo Cabrera, 26, of Dundalk, Md.; Miguel Luna, who was in his 40s and from El Salvador; and Maynor Yasir Suazo Sandoval, who was in his 30s and from Honduras.

The bodies of Mr. Fuentes and Mr. Cabrera were recovered on Wednesday, the authorities said.

Mr. Moore took a moment on Saturday to address the families of the victims in Spanish. “They are in our hearts. They are in our thoughts, today and forever,” he said.

Standing not far from the wreckage, Mr. Moore repeated on Saturday that state and federal officials faced a long road to recovery. But he said that at least 377 people were working as part of the recovery operation, and that the pace of the round-the-clock project would increase in the coming days.

“We are going to move as fast as possible,” he said.

Anna Betts contributed reporting.

Edgar Sandoval covers Texas for The Times, with a focus on the Latino community and the border with Mexico. He is based in San Antonio. More about Edgar Sandoval

WEATHER ALERT: Hail, damaging winds and flooding possible as cold front arrives in DC region

WTOP News

WATCH LIVE: Key Bridge removal, cleanup begins in Baltimore

Valerie Bonk | [email protected]

March 31, 2024, 11:49 AM

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Crews in Baltimore, Maryland, are starting to remove pieces of the Francis Scott Key Bridge that collapsed when a ship ran into it last week.

On Saturday, teams of engineers started cutting and lifting steel wreckage from the bridge in the Patapsco River.

StreamTime Live, the company that first captured the collapse of the bridge , has a livestream of the cleanup here:

The Key Bridge Response Unified Command includes the U.S. Coast Guard, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the Maryland Department of the Environment, the Maryland Transportation Authority, the Witt O’Brien’s representing Synergy Marine, and the Maryland State Police.

Get breaking news and daily headlines delivered to your email inbox by signing up here .

© 2024 WTOP. All Rights Reserved. This website is not intended for users located within the European Economic Area.

Valerie Bonk started working at WTOP in 2016 and has lived in Howard County, Maryland, her entire life. She's thrilled to be a reporter for WTOP telling stories on air. She works as both a television and radio reporter in the Maryland and D.C. areas. 

  • @ValerieBonk

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method sections truss

IMAGES

  1. Method of Sections Truss Analysis Example

    method sections truss

  2. TRUSSES Method of Sections, Reactions Required in 2 Minutes!

    method sections truss

  3. Method Of Sections Truss

    method sections truss

  4. method-of-sections-to-solve-a-truss

    method sections truss

  5. Truss Analysis by Method of Sections Solved Example, Engineers Academy

    method sections truss

  6. Solving a Truss Using the Method of Sections

    method sections truss

VIDEO

  1. Method of Sections

  2. Method of Section Truss Analysis Engineering Mechanics

  3. Trusses (Section Method) by Dr.R.G.Biradar

  4. Analysis of Trusses by Methods of Joints

  5. Truss Analysis|Method of Section|Mechanics|Trusses @ishamishra7831

  6. TRUSS|ANALYSIS OF TRUSS BY USING METHOD OF SECTIONS|Lecture 03||PRADEEP GIRI SIR

COMMENTS

  1. 5.5: Method of Sections

    Figure 5.5.1 5.5. 1: The first step in the method of sections is to label each member. Treating the entire truss structure as a rigid body, draw a free body diagram, write out the equilibrium equations, and solve for the external reacting forces acting on the truss structure. This analysis should not differ from the analysis of a single rigid body.

  2. Solving Truss by Method of Sections

    Step 2: Make a cut along the members of interest. Here comes the most important part of solving a truss using the method of sections. It involves making a slice through the members you wish to solve. This method of structural analysis is extremely useful when trying to solve some of the members without having to solve the entire structure using ...

  3. 5.3 Method of Sections

    The method of sections is a process used to solve for the unknown forces acting on members of a truss. The method involves breaking the truss down into individual sections and analyzing each section as a separate rigid body. The method of sections is usually the fastest and easiest way to determine the unknown forces acting in a specific member ...

  4. Truss Analysis using the Method of Joints and Method of Sections

    3.0 Method of Sections Truss Analysis. Now we can consider the other tool at our disposal, the method of sections. Instead of isolating a single joint, the method of sections involves us making an imaginary cut through the entire structure. In doing so, we reveal the internal member forces in the members our plane cuts through.

  5. Method of Sections

    Method of Sections. In this method, we will cut the truss into two sections by passing a cutting plane through the members whose internal forces we wish to determine. This method permits us to solve directly any member by analyzing the left or the right section of the cutting plane. To remain each section in equilibrium, the cut members will be ...

  6. Mechanics Map

    The Method of Sections. The method of sections is a process used to solve for the unknown forces acting on members of a truss.The method involves cutting the truss into individual sections and analyzing each section as a separate rigid body. Where the method of joints is the fastest way to find the forces in all members, the method of sections is usually the fastest and easiest way to ...

  7. 3.6 The Method of Sections

    The method of sections is an alternative to the method of joints for finding the internal axial forces in truss members. It works by cutting through the whole truss at a single section and using global equilibrium (3 equations in 2D) to solve for the unknown axial forces in the members that cross the cut section. ...

  8. Trusses Method of Sections

    Learn to solve for unknown forces in trusses using the method of sections. We go through multiple examples, step by step, using equations of equilibrium and ...

  9. Statics: Method of Sections

    The method of sections is used to solve for the unknown forces within specific members of a truss without solving for them all. The method involves dividing the truss into sections by cutting through the selected members and analyzing the section as a rigid body. The advantage of the Method of Sections is that the only internal member forces exposed are those which you have cut through, the ...

  10. Truss analysis by method of sections explained

    This engineering statics tutorial explains method of sections for truss analysis. You first need to solve for the reaction forces by drawing a FBD of the ent...

  11. Analysis Of Trusses By Method Of Sections

    Principle. If a truss is in equilibrium, then whichever section of the truss being considered must also be in equilibrium. The Method of Sections involves analytically cutting the truss into sections and solving for static equilibrium for each section. The sections are obtained by cutting through some of the members of the truss to expose the force inside the members.

  12. PDF Method of Sections for Truss Analysis

    Method of Sections (relies on internal forces being in equilibrium with external forces on a section) Determine support reaction forces. Cut a section in such a way that force action lines intersect. Solve for equilibrium. Sum moments about an intersection of force lines of action Advantages: Quick when you only need one or two forces (only 3 ...

  13. Method of Sections to Solve a Truss

    The method of sections is used to calculate the forces in each member of the truss. This is done by making a "cut" along three selected members. First, calculate the reactions at the supports. Taking the sum of the moments at the left support: Next do a force balance of the forces: where and are the reaction forces, and and are the point load ...

  14. Trusses

    In this video, the analysis of statically determinate trusses using the method of sections is explained.Examples are given to illustrate the method.This is p...

  15. PDF notes 03c trusses

    FHC = 12.5 k (T) 1/2. Method of Sections. Procedure for analysis - the following is a procedure for analyzing a truss using the method of sections: First, if necessary, determine the support reactions for the entire truss. Next, make a decision on how the truss should be "cut" into sections and draw the corresponding free-body diagrams.

  16. Statics/Method of Sections

    The method of sections is the same except an entire section is isolated. It should be obvious at this point that there cannot be any net force or moment on the section, if there was the section would move. In order to find the stress in member A-B it is convenient to isolate the section of the truss as indicated by the image to the left.

  17. Problem 003-ms

    Problem 003-ms | Method of Sections. Problem 003-ms. The truss in Fig. T-04 is pinned to the wall at point F, and supported by a roller at point C. Calculate the force (tension or compression) in members BC, BE, and DE. Figure T-04.

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    The US faces a Liz Truss-style market shock if the government ignores the country's ballooning federal debt, the head of Congress's independent fiscal watchdog has warned. Phillip Swagel ...

  19. Demolition crews cutting into Baltimore bridge's collapsed truss

    0:03. 0:40. President Joe Biden will be visiting Baltimore this week as salvage crews intensify efforts to clear away massive chunks of the collapsed Francis Scott Key Bridge in a feverish effort ...

  20. Statics: Lesson 49

    𝐌𝐲 𝐄𝐧𝐠𝐢𝐧𝐞𝐞𝐫𝐢𝐧𝐠 𝐍𝐨𝐭𝐞𝐛𝐨𝐨𝐤 for notes! Has graph paper, study tips, and Some Sudoku puzzles or downtime between classes! https://amzn.to ...

  21. Why the Baltimore Bridge Collapsed So Quickly

    The ship plowed into the support, with large sections of the bridge's main truss section instantly snapping apart and falling into the river. It took just 20 seconds or so for the structure to ...

  22. Crews at Site of Bridge Collapse Work on Removing First Piece of Debris

    By Edgar Sandoval. March 30, 2024. Crews in Baltimore on Saturday were working on pulling the first piece of wreckage out of the water after the collapse of the Francis Scott Key Bridge, a ...

  23. WATCH LIVE: Key Bridge removal, cleanup begins in Baltimore

    The Key Bridge Response Unified Command includes the U.S. Coast Guard, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the Maryland Department of the Environment, the Maryland Transportation Authority, the Witt ...