In civil engineering calculation I have seen weight of IPE 300 profile expressed in kN/m2 unit.

IPE 300 0.42 kN/m2

I know IPE 300 is approximately 42.4 kg/m. How did they calculated that value expressed in kN/m2?


The density of structural steel is usually adopted as 7850 kg/m3 (or thereabouts). According to this source, the cross-sectional area of an IPE 300 section is 53.8 cm2. The linear mass of such a section is therefore 42.2 kg/m, which converts to a linear weight of 0.422 kN/m.

$$\begin{align} m &= 42.2\ \text{kg/m} \\ w &= mg \\ &= 42.2 * 10 = 422\ \text{N/m} = 0.422\ \text{kN/m} \end{align}$$

If you've seen anyone use 0.42 kN/m2, then you've seen someone doing it wrong and not paying attention to dimensional analysis.

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  • $\begingroup$ Yes, that is the thing that was confusing me.Thank you. $\endgroup$ – Sysrq147 Jul 7 '16 at 18:23

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