SV405 – Semi Circular Arch


SV405 – Semi Circular Arch

The experiment semi-circular arch allows the experimental investigation of the horizontal thrust observed when loads are applied to a semi-circular arch with hinges at each end of the arch.

The measurements taken can then also be used to validate calculated values for the horizontal thrust and deflections found using Castigliano’s Theorem.

This experiment has the following properties:

  • Ability to show mechanical principles of semi-circular arches
  • Both point loads and uniformly distributed loads (UDL) can be simulated
  • Pivoting support capable of measuring horizontal thrust

Supplied with Armfield structures software as standard


The constant radius semi-circular arch used in this experiment has load hangers equidistant along its length for the weight hangers to be positioned at, allowing a range of set ups.

The arch uses two roller assemblies along with the arch supports allowing the arch ends to freely pivot as the loads are applied until equilibrium is reached.

The arch is clamped to the supports which simulate a pinned support at each end of the arch. The supports don’t allow any horizontal or vertical movement but allow the supports to rotate.

One of the supports constrains the frame horizontally by a load cell, this allows the horizontal thrust at that support to be measured.

Technical Specifications

  • 1 x Arch Specimen
  • Arch Span: 500mm
  • Specimen Material: Aluminium (BS EN 755-2 EN AW-6082 T6)
  • Young’s Modulus: 70 GPa
  • Specimen Section Size: 20 x 3mm
  • Unloaded Beam Assembly Mass: 530g
  • 6 x 50g Empty Weight Hangers
  • 3 x 500g Weight Hangers
  • 1 x DTI Holder Assembly
  • 1 x DTI Extension Bar
  • 1 x Digital Indicator
  • DTI Connecting Hardware

Features & Benefits

  • Preformed Arch with 5:1 span to height ratio
  • Weight hangers with additional disk weights to apply point load and UDL at set locations
  • Load cell to measure horizontal reaction force at one end of the arch
  • Supports to constrain arch and prevent linear motion while allowing rotation
  • Supplied with Armfield structures software as standard


  • Relationship between applied loads and horizontal reaction force (thrust)
  • Comparison between theory and experimental results
  • Horizontal reaction force influence lines
  • Uniformly distributed load and point loads

  • Horizontal Reaction
  • Influence Lines
  • Uniformly Distributed Loads
  • Point Loads


  • Storage temperature: -10°C to +70°C
  • Operating temperature range: +10°C to +50°C
  • Operating relative humidity range: 0 to 95%, non-condensing

  • SV100: Bench Mounted Frame
  • SV101: Structures Interface Unit
  • SV102: Pinned Supports Kit

Electrical supply:

110/120V, 60Hz
220/240V, 50Hz

  • SV100: Bench Mounted Frame
  • SV101: Structures Interface Unit
  • SV102: Pinned Supports Kit
  • PC with a USB port, running Windows 7 or above


Volume: 0.1m³
Gross Weight: 25kg

Length: 1.176m

Width: 0.392m

Height: 0.922m

  • SV405: Semi Circular Arch
  • SV100: Bench Mounted Frame (Sold separately)
  • SV101: Structures Interface Unit (Sold separately)
  • SV102: Pinned Supports Kit (Sold separately)

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