MEEN40170 Mechanics of Solids III

Academic Year 2023/2024

A range of important topics in advanced stress analysis are covered, including:

Stress-strain distributions in planar elastic bodies. Compatibility and biharmonic equations. The use of Airy stress functions to solve for the analytical stress distribution in classic cases such as a 2D beam in bending and a hole in a semi-infinite plate.Design of thick-walled pressure vessels. Lame's solution. Shrink fitting and interference fits.

Impact loading & stress waves in elastic solids. High strain rate testing of materials using the Split Hopkinson Pressure Bar apparatus.

Bending of thin plates. Derivation of governing equations in rectangular and cylindrical coordinates. Solution of a variety of practical problems involving flat rectangular and circular plates and axi-symmetrical shells.

Bending of straight beams of asymmetrical cross sections. Normal and shear stress distributions and the location of the shear centre. Bending of curved beams.

Plastic collapse of straight beams. Determination of the collapse mode and corresponding collapse loads for simple structures.

Laboratory Exercise:

Plastic collapse of beams in bending. In this test, a beam of a given cross-section will be loaded to destruction in a laboratory scale testing rig. The theoretical value of collapse load will be calculated for the loading configuration and beam cross-section of interest and compared to the experimental value.

All laboratories are carried out with reference to current School Health and Safety protocols. Students should follow these during all laboratory activities. Further information is available at

Note: Lab report is to be submitted within two weeks of the date of the lab activity.

Assignments: Three Brightspace-based homework assignments will be set during the course of the trimester.

Recommended Texts:
P. P. Benham, R. J. Crawford and C. G. Armstrong, Mechanics of Engineering Materials, Longman.
H. Kolsky, Stress Waves in Solids, Dover publications.
Reading List:Lecture slides (provided).
G. E. Mase, Theory and Problems of Continuum Mechanics, Schaum's Outline Series, McGraw-Hill, Inc. 1970 (selected chapters).
S.P. Timshenko and J.N. Goodier, Theory of Elasticity, 3rd edn, McGraw-Hill, London, 1970 (selected chapters).

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Curricular information is subject to change

Learning Outcomes:

On successful completion of this subject the student will be able to:
1. Formulate an analytical solution for the stress fields in classic elasticity problems using the method of Airy stress functions.
2. Calculate the state of stress in thick-walled composite cylinders formed by a specified interference fit between an outer jacket and an inner sleeve.
3. Calculate the deflections and bending stresses of commonly-encountered rectangular & circular plates subjected to a variety of boundary conditions.
4. Analyze dynamic stress waves in bars subjected to impact loading.
5. Determine the collapse load for simple beam structures.

Student Effort Hours: 
Student Effort Type Hours






Autonomous Student Learning




Approaches to Teaching and Learning:
A problem-based approach is taken in lectures, whereby the theory is taught through examples. In addition, a comprehensive set of lecture slides and problem sheets are provided along with complete solutions, which allow students to master individual topics at their own pace. The lecturer is very approachable and is always available to meet with students to discuss any topic for which they require further clarification. 
Requirements, Exclusions and Recommendations

Not applicable to this module.

Module Requisites and Incompatibles
MEEN30020 - Mechanics of Solids II

MEEN20040 - Mechanics of Solids I

Assessment Strategy  
Description Timing Open Book Exam Component Scale Must Pass Component % of Final Grade
Assignment: Brightspace Quiz 2 Week 7 n/a Graded No


Assignment: Brightspace Quiz 3 Week 10 n/a Graded No


Assignment: Brightspace Quiz 1 Week 4 n/a Graded No


Lab Report: One lab report to be submitted via Brightspace - Laboratory Experiment to demonstrate a concept discussed in lectures. Varies over the Trimester n/a Graded No


Examination: Final Examination 2 hour End of Trimester Exam No Graded No


Carry forward of passed components
Resit In Terminal Exam
Spring No
Please see Student Jargon Buster for more information about remediation types and timing. 
Feedback Strategy/Strategies

• Feedback individually to students, post-assessment
• Group/class feedback, post-assessment

How will my Feedback be Delivered?

Assignments: Feedback for Brightspace Quizzes will be available immediately after the Quiz has been submitted. Laboratory Report: Will be submitted via Brightspace and a short individual feedback will be provided (also via Brightspace) by the teaching assistant in charge of the lab. Exam: Individual feedback will be provided on request after the final results have been released.

Timetabling information is displayed only for guidance purposes, relates to the current Academic Year only and is subject to change.
Lecture Offering 1 Week(s) - 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 9, 10, 11, 12 Mon 12:00 - 12:50
Lecture Offering 1 Week(s) - Autumn: All Weeks Thurs 14:00 - 14:50
Lecture Offering 1 Week(s) - Autumn: All Weeks Wed 11:00 - 11:50
Laboratory Offering 1 Week(s) - 4 Wed 15:00 - 17:50
Laboratory Offering 2 Week(s) - 5 Wed 15:00 - 17:50
Laboratory Offering 3 Week(s) - 6 Wed 15:00 - 17:50
Laboratory Offering 4 Week(s) - 7 Wed 15:00 - 17:50
Laboratory Offering 5 Week(s) - 8 Wed 15:00 - 17:50