Research Output

Evaluation of the Shear Constant of a Timber Beam using a Photogrammetric Approach

  The shear modulus is a fundamental mechanical property of wood that is used in general timber design [1,2,3]. Compared with other engineering materials, timber has relatively low shear stiffness in comparison to its modulus of elasticity, and so shear deformation contributes a more significant portion of the flexural deflection. Specifically, the shear modulus is critical when designing for the lateral-torsional stability of joists, particularly those with a long span and no lateral supports [4]. The shear modulus is also significant in the design of the serviceability of wood-joist floors [5], and is an input into analytical [6] and finite element [7] models to predict the vibrational serviceability. However, obtaining the shear modulus is limited to either shear block [8] or bending tests [9].
In a torsion test, measuring the rotations of the samples effectively at various locations is the key to the determination of the shear modulus and its variations. The inclinometer is one of the best instruments for this purpose. However, for some size of samples, especially, the small clear samples, it is very difficult to put on more than one inclinometer. So it will be difficult to measure the variation or the distribution of the shear modulus in the samples. To overcome this difficulty, the authors propose a photogrammetric method to measure the surface rotation of the samples. With this new approach, the rotations of any point on the sample surface in the field of view can be measured from the photographs taken by two cameras simultaneously.

In this paper, an experimental study is described which was conducted to determine the shear modulus of clear wood timber using torsion tests. The main objective was to investigate the relationship between modulus of elasticity and shear modulus. Another objective was to compare the measurements of the sample rotation from the inclinometer and photogrammetry methods.

  • Date:

    09 September 2011

  • Publication Status:


  • Publisher

    Civil-Comp Press

  • DOI:


  • Library of Congress:

    TA Engineering (General). Civil engineering (General)

  • Dewey Decimal Classification:

    624 Civil engineering

  • Funders:

    Edinburgh Napier Funded


Zhang, H., Mohamed, A. & Xiao, Z. (2011). Evaluation of the Shear Constant of a Timber Beam using a Photogrammetric Approach. In Tsompanakis, Y. & Topping, B. H. V. (Eds.). Proceedings of the thirteenth international conference on civil, structural and environmental engineeringdoi:10.4203/ccp.96.164. ISBN 978-1-905088-47-8



shear constant, timber beam, torsion test method, photogrammetric method, stereovision

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