Rectangular hollow sections (RHS) are steel profiles with a rectangular cross-sectional shape and hollow interior. They are used extensively as structural members in construction, mechanical engineering and transportation applications.
The rectangular cross-section of RHS provides higher strength and stiffness properties compared to other shapes such as circular or square hollow sections. The corners of the rectangular shape provide good resistance to torsional forces. RHS can withstand higher bending moments along the major axis compared to the minor axis.
RHS are typically produced in hot-rolled or cold-formed types. Hot-rolled RHS have thicker walls and are produced at high temperatures in a mill. Cold-formed RHS are formed from steel sheets and have relatively thinner walls. They are shaped at ambient temperatures using press braking or tube mill processes. RHS profiles are defined using width x depth x thickness dimensions.
In building construction, RHS are used as beams, columns, trusses and framework for walls and floors. RHS columns provide good resistance to compressive and transverse forces. Concrete-filled RHS columns can enhance the buckling strength and structural integrity. RHS beams support flexural forces effectively and also provide torsional resistance.
Bridges utilize RHS for the main girders, cross beams, bracings and guard rails. RHS provide optimized strength with reduced self-weight, enabling longer span bridge designs. Tubular RHS trusses and arches are advantageous for curved bridges and flyovers.
RHS find structural application in towers, masts, rail coaches, non-residential buildings, agricultural sheds, factories and industrial units. Bolt-based connections allow quick assembly of RHS structures compared to welded joints.
Rectangular hollow sections are used extensively in machinery, equipment, cranes and lifting devices. RHS boom sections provide strength and stability to heavy lifting equipment like tower cranes, mobile cranes and aerial work platforms. Telescopic RHS members enable adjustable heights and reaches in cranes and hydraulic booms.
Transportation sector employs RHS profiles in buses, trucks, rail carriages and shipping containers. RHS contribute to sturdy and lightweight vehicle construction. They provide increased load capacity for cargo transportation. Curved and jointed RHS can create frames for unique automobile designs.
Staircases, warehouses, mezzanine floors and platforms utilize RHS sections for rails, columns, safety fences and structural frames. RHS require less maintenance and provide long service life with high corrosion resistance. They can be easily welded, bolted or screwed together for connections.
RHS offer aesthetic possibilities in architectural building exteriors, decorative facades, pillar cladding, hand rails and art sculptures. Available in different sizes and wall thicknesses, RHS can be customized to required load capacities. Higher strength steel grades allow large span designs with reduced structural member sizes.
Advanced techniques like concrete filling of RHS enhance the strength and stiffness for load bearing applications. Intelligent services integration is possible within the hollow space. Self-compacting concrete can automatically fill complex shaped RHS sections.
Rectangular hollow sections thus provide efficient, lightweight and high strength structural profiles for versatile applications in construction, infrastructure, transportation, industrial machinery and architectural purposes. Their rectangular cross-section optimizes bending stiffness in two directions along with good torsional resistance. RHS offer durability, design flexibility and accelerated structural fabrication.
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