transoms were modeled by beam element. The size of the glass panel is 1200 mm x 1800 mm x 10 mm (47.25 in. x 70.9 in. x 0.4 in.). The mullions and transoms are aluminum rectangular hollow sections of size 45 mm x 100 mm x 3 mm. The details of the section profile and layout are shown in Figure 29.15. The curtain wall is subjected to a lateral uniform pressure of 3.85 kPa (0.56 psi). Young's modulus of glass is taken as 71,700 MPa (10.4 x 106 psi) and Poisson's ratio, as 0.22. Young's modulus of aluminum is 70,000 MPa.

This problem is aimed to investigate the influence of mullion and transom flexibility to the glass strength. Structural members supporting glass panels are normally supported by brackets to concrete slab or spandrel. Due to the high cost of aluminum and its small Young's modulus of elasticity of about one third that of steel, the members are generally flexible, so that deflection is commonly a design criterion. In practice, a span of is the tolerance since it is believed that a large deflection in mullion or transom will create a stress pattern on glass that is different from the assumed rigid support case.

This example is aimed to investigate the effect of flexible support due to flexibility in structural members, which, to our knowledge, was not studied previously, though a limiting value of 175 of span is recommended in the Canadian Code of Practice [12].

FIGURE 29.15 Layout of the tested full-scale sample.
TABLE 29.3 Flexible Supports
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