Different Types of Beams

Beams are generally horizontal structural members which transfer loads horizontally along their length to the supports where the loads are usually resolved into vertical forces. Beams are used for resisting vertical loads, shear forces and bending moments.

Different types of beams can be classified based on the type of support.
The four different types of beams are:

  1. Simply Supported Beam
  2. Fixed Beam
  3. Cantilever Beam
  4. Continuously Supported Beam

Simply Supported Beam
If the ends of a beam are made to rest freely on supports beam, it is called a simply (freely) supported beam.
Simply supported beam

Fixed Beam
If a beam is fixed at both ends it is free called fixed beam. Its another name is built-in beam or encastre beam.
type-fixed-beam

Cantilever Beam
If a beam is fixed at one end while the other end is free, it is called cantilever beam.
Cantilever Beam

Continuously Supported Beam
If more than two supports are provided to beam, it is called continuously supported beam.
Continuously Supported Beam


Vinodh Reddy is an Editor-in-chief of ME Mechanical. He holds Bachelor of Engineering (Honours) degree in Mechanical Engineering from BITS-Pilani. He also writes for vrcworks.net and EduGeneral.

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