The Timoshenko Beam With a Moving Load

[+] Author and Article Information
C. R. Steele

Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics, Stanford University, Stanford, Calif.

J. Appl. Mech 35(3), 481-488 (Sep 01, 1968) (8 pages) doi:10.1115/1.3601239 History: Received May 15, 1967; Revised March 19, 1968; Online September 14, 2011


The problem of a semi-infinite Timoshenko beam of an elastic foundation with a step load moving from the supported end at a constant velocity is discussed. Asymptotic solutions are obtained for all ranges of load speed. The solution is shown to approach the “steady-state” solution, except for three speeds at which the steady state does not exist. Previous investigators have considered only the steady-state solution for the moving concentrated load and have indicated that the three speeds are “critical.” It is shown, however, that only the lowest speed is truly critical in that the response increases with time. For the load speed equal to either the shear or bar velocity, the transients due to the end condition never leave the vicinity of the load discontinuities, so a steady-state condition is never attained. However, the response is shown to be bounded in time for a distributed load. Thus the nonexistence of a steady state does not necessarily indicate a critical condition. Furthermore, the concentrated load solution is shown to have validity at speeds the magnitude of the sonic speeds only for loads of a concentration beyond the limitations of beam theory. Asymptotic results have also been obtained for the beam without a foundation. Since the procedure is similar for beams with, and without, a foundation, only the results are included to show a comparison with the numerical results previously obtained by Florence.

Copyright © 1968 by ASME
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