Unsymmetrical Beams

Flexural Stress varies directly linearly with distance from the neutral axis. Thus for a symmetrical section such as wide flange, the compressive and tensile stresses will be the same. This will be desirable if the material is both equally strong in tension and compression. However, there are materials, such as cast iron, which are strong in compression than in tension. It is therefore desirable to use a beam with unsymmetrical cross section giving more area in the compression part making the stronger fiber located at a greater distance from the neutral axis than the weaker fiber. Some of these sections are shown below.