A tension member transmits a direct axial tensile force between two points in a structural frame. An axially loaded tension member is subjected to uniform, normal tensile stresses at all cross sections along its length. Ropes supporting a load or cables in a suspension bridge are obvious examples. In building frames, tension members occur as
1. Tension chords and internal ties in trusses 2. Tension bracing members 3. Hangers supporting floor beams
Examples of these members are shown in Figure 6.1. The main sections used for tension members are
1. Open sections such as angles, channels, tees, joists, universal beams and columns. 2. Closed sections: circular, square and rectangular hollow sections. 3. Compound and built-up sections: Double angles and double channels are common
compound sections used in trusses. Built-up sections are used in bridge trusses.