Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Engineering Science


Civil and Environmental Engineering


F. Michael Bartlett


The current resistance factor of 0.90 specified in CSA S16.1-94 “Limit States Design of Steel Structures” was reviewed for tension members failing by gross section yield or net section fracture, columns under concentric axial loads and laterally supported bending members. Large quantities of dimensional and material property data for rolled W, WWF and HSS shapes were collected. Analyses were performed, which allowed distinct populations within the large data sets to be discovered. The statistical parameters determined for geometric properties were similar to values reported in the landmark study by Kennedy and Gad Aly (1980). Yield strengths of HSS and WWF have improved. Resistance factors, Φ, were determined using the new resistance distributions based on a First-Order Second-Moment safety index, load statistics obtained from the literature, and load factors in the 1995 National Building Code of Canada (NBCC, 1995). When compared to Kennedy and Gad Aly (1980) the resistance factor has increased by an average of 0.046. A value of 0.95 is sufficient for laterally supported beams, stocky columns and tension members failing by gross section yield and a Φ value of 0.90 is sufficient for intermediate columns and tension members failing by net section fracture.



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