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What is a Beam?

  • A beam is a structural element that is primarily subjected to bending.

  • Beams support the slabs and transfer the load applied on slabs to columns. Secondary beams may transfer the load to  main beams, which, in turn, transfer the load to columns. RC beams are normally cast monolithically with slabs. As a result, the two parts act together to resist the loads.

  • Though beams are normally rectangular in shape, some extra slab width at the top, called flange, is assumed to act together in the design. The resulting beams are called L-beams or T-beams, depending on whether flanges are on only one side or on both the sides. The most efficient cross section for a simply supported beam is an I- or H-section beam.

  • RC beams are designed for bending moment and shear force. Longitudinal reinforcements are provided to resist the tension produced by bending moments and stirrups are provided to resist the shear forces.

  • Beams in frames subjected to lateral loads may have to be designed to resist reversal of moments and additional axial forces.

  • Beams can be singly or doubly reinforced, depending on whether they are reinforced only in the tension zone or reinforced with steel in both the compression and tension zones, respectively. They can also be simply supported, continuous, or cantilevered.

Different types of beams

Different types of beams: 

(a) Rectangular 
(b) L-section 
(c) T-section 
(d) I-section 
(e) Box section
(f) Steel–Concrete composite beam

Also Read:

Classification of Columns
Type of Stair-Cases and its Components
Difference between One Way Slab and Two Way Slab