Vuk Milošević, Biserka Marković, Dragoslav Stojić

DOI Number
First page
Last page


Membrane structures exhibit large displacements under external loads. These are a consequence of the low stiffness of the membrane. One of the ways to increase the stiffness of the structure is to increase the prestress intensity of the membrane or of the cables. This paper presents a research done on the influence of the prestress intensities on the displacements under point loads since point loads have a significant impact on the displacements in membrane structures. In this research the prestress of the membrane and the prestress of the edge cables have been investigated separately. Ten different intensities of the membrane prestress, and five different intensities of the cable prestress, combined with four positions of the point load have been modeled. The intensity of the point load has been kept constant in all loads cases. The research is conducted on numerical models in software Sofistik. Displacements under given parameters of the membrane structure and the point loads were recorded and maximal displacements were compared. The obtained results provide a better understanding of the relation between the prestress intensities and displacements of saddle shaped membranes. The outcome of the research can be used to better predict and to reduce the displacements of membranes under point loads.


membrane structures, point load, prestressing, displacements, double curvature, tensile structures

Full Text:



T. Devulder, R. Wilson, J. Chilton, “The thermal behavior of buildings incorporating single skin tensile membrane structures”, International Journal of Low Carbon Technologies, Vol. 2, pp. 195-213, 2007.

H. Berger, “Form and function of tensile structures for permanent buildings”, Engineering Structures, Vol. 21, pp. 669-679, 1999.

K. Bletzinger and E. Ramm, “Structural Optimization and Form Finding of Light Weight Structures”, Computers and Structures, Vol. 79, pp. 2053-2062, 2001.

V. Milošević, T. Igić and D. Kostić, “Tensile structures as the most advanced lightweight structures”, Facta Universitatis: Architecture and Civil Engineering, Vol. 11, No. 3, pp. 269-284, 2013.

P. Gosling and B. Bridgens, et al., “Analysis and Design of Membrane Structures: Results of a round Robin Exercise”, Engineering Structures, Vol. 48, pp. 313-328, 2013.

V. Milošević, “Primena tekstilnih konstruktivnih materijala u arhitekturi”, Tekstilna industrija, LX, No. 2, pp. 33-39, 2013.

M. Seidel, Tensile Surface Structures: A Practical Guide to Cable and Membrane Construction, Ernst & Sohn, Berlin, 2009, pp. 229.

V. Milošević and D. Kostić, “The Problem of Large Deflections in Membrane Structures”, International Symposium for Students of Doctoral Studies – PhIDAC 2012, Niš, 2012, pp. 388-394.

T. Wu and E. Ting, “Large deflection analysis of 3D membrane structures by a 4-node quadrilateral intrinsic element”, Thin-walled Structures, Vol. 46, pp. 261-275, 2008.

J.T. Katsikadelis and G.C. Tsiatas, “The analog equation method for large deflection analysis of heterogeneous orthotropic membranes: a boundary-only solution”, Engineering Analysis with Boundary Elements, Vol. 25, pp. 655-667, 2001.

J.T. Katsikadelis and G.C. Tsiatas, “Large deflection analysis of elastic membranes”, International Journal for Numerical Methods in Engineering, Vol. 65, pp. 264-294, 2006.

A. P. S. Selvadurai, “Deflections of a rubber membrane”, Journal of the Mechanics and Physics of Solids, Vol. 54, pp. 1093-1119, 2006.

B. Forster and M. Mollaert, European Design Guide for Tensile Surface Structures, TensiNet, Brussels, 2004, pp. 354.

V. Milošević and D. Kostić, “Zavisnost membranskih sila od prednaprezanja i graničnih uslova membranskih konstrukcija”, Zbornik radova Građevinsko-arhitektonskog fakulteta, No. 27, pp. 59-70, 2012.

V. Milošević, „Dependence of membrane deflection on the position and intensity of point loads“, Structural Engineering International, Vol. 2015, No. 1, pp. 20-25, 2015.

B. Bridgens and M. Birchall, “Form and Function: The Significance of Material Properties in the Design of Tensile Fabric Structures”, Engineering Structures, Vol. 44, pp. 1-12, 2012.


  • There are currently no refbacks.

ISNN 0354-4605 (Print)

ISNN 2406-0860 (Online)