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What is lateral stress?

Last updated date: 18th Jul 2024
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Hint: Stress is a physical quantity that can be defined as the force on a body per unit area of the body. It is generated as a resisting force within the body against the deforming forces applied. Lateral can be defined as the direction that is perpendicular to the direction of the axis of the body.

Complete answer:
Whenever a deforming force is applied on a body, an internal resisting force per unit area arises in the body which is known as stress. Stress can also be defined as the restoring force per unit area in the body.

There are basically three types of stress – Normal stress, Tangential stress, Hydraulic stress
Lateral stress, also known as the normal stress is defined as the stress that is applied in the lateral direction to the body.The lateral direction can be defined as the direction perpendicular to the axis of the body.

It can also be said as the normal direction to the body.Hence, the lateral stress can be defined as the stress that is acted in the perpendicular direction to the body.Due to the lateral stress, a lateral strain is developed which affects the diameter or as a general case, area of the body.

Note:We must remember the difference between the lateral direction and the longitudinal direction. The longitudinal stress changes the length of the body, while the lateral stress changes the diameter or area of the body. Lateral stress and longitudinal stress both can be further classified as the tensile stress (which acts in the outer direction) and the compressive stress (which acts in the inner direction).