Strength of Materials Defined:
Mechanics of Solids or Strength of Materials is a popular branch of Engineering Mechanics. It deals with the relation of externally applied loads and its internal effect on the bodies. In general study we assume bodies and objects to be rigid but in Mechanics of Solids we do consider the deformation/deflection however small they may be. Modern Mechanics have many fields and/or types e.g quantum mechanics, fluid mechanics, engineering mechanics, automotive mechanics etc.
The subject of mechanics of materials involves analytical methods for determining the strength, stiffness (deformation characteristics), and stability of the various members in a structural system. The behavior of a member depends not only on the fundamental laws that govern the equilibrium of forces, but also on the mechanical characteristics of the material. These mechanical characteristics come from the laboratory, where materials are tested under accurately known forces and their behavior is carefully observed and measured. For this reason, mechanics of materials is a blended science of experiment and Newtonian postulates of analytical mechanics.
Applications of Strength of Materials
- To design foundations and super-structure. In design of a structure the engineer must consider:
- Type of Material
- To fulfill the requirements of strength and rigidity
- To design load bearing components for vehicles, power generation, transmission etc.