Birnstiel, Charles Consulting Engineer, Forest Hills, New York.
Last reviewed:October 2019
- Types of arches
- Steel arches
- Concrete arches
- Timber arches
- Masonry arches
- Structural analysis of arches
- Masonry skeletons
- Masonry materials
- Related Primary Literature
- Additional Reading
A structural member that spans horizontally between supports that develop inwardly directed horizontal reactions when the member is subjected to a vertical load. The member axis is usually curved and usually lies in a vertical plane. Arches are used to support decks for roadways, railroad tracks, and pipelines on bridges, as well as in buildings to support walls, floors, and roofs in order to provide spaces unobstructed by columns. They may be built of steel, concrete (plain, reinforced, or prestressed), composite concrete-steel, timber, or masonry. See also: Structural materials
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