A compression member are structural elements that are subjected only to axial compressive forces; that is, the loads are applied longitudinal axis through the centroid of the member cross section, and the load over the cross sectional area gives the stress on the compressed member.
The loading capacity of a short column is determined by strength limit of the material. The strength of a column of intermediate size is limited by its degree of inelasticity. A long column is constrained by the elastic limit (that is by amount of buckling).
See also 
- "Compression member". Retrieved 2007-01-08.
- Columns and other compression members
- Bicycle compression members
- Numerical load numbers for reinforced concrete compression members
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