Revisiting the neutral axis in wood beams

Public Deposited

Downloadable Content

Download PDF


Attribute NameValues
  • For wood beams, it is often assumed that the neutral axis (NA) is located at the centroid of the beam. This would be the case for isotropic and homogeneous materials but these prerequisites are not valid for wood. The varying grain patterns and knots located throughout wood make wood anisotropic and non-homogeneous. Knowledge of the true location of the neutral axis would facilitate a better understanding of the mechanical behavior of wood beams. To analyze this question, a digital image correlation technique (speckle photography) was applied while wood beams with the dimensions 25×25 mm² and 38×89 mm² were loaded in bending. The NA was determined by axial strain plots. From the data obtained it is was observed that the neutral axis of 25×25 mm² beams is located below the centroid while for 38×89 mm² beams NA was above the centroid. As would be expected, knots change the location of the NA depending on their location in the beam.
Resource Type
Date Available
Date Issued
  • Davis, Philip M., Rakesh Gupta and Arijit Sinha. 2011. Revisiting the neutral axis in wood beams. Holzforschung. 66(4): 497-503. doi:10.1515/hf.2011.180
Journal Title
Journal Volume
  • 66
Journal Issue/Number
  • 4
Rights Statement



This work has no parents.