It is shown that by a series of admissible functional transformations the already derived (third-order) strongly nonlinear ordinary differential equation (ODE), describing the elastica buckling analysis of a straight bar under its own weight [Int.J.Solids Struct.24(12), 1179–1192, 1988, The Theory of Elastic Stability, McGraw-Hill, New York, 1961], is reduced to a first-order nonlinear integrodifferential equation. The absence of exact analytic solutions of the reduced equation leads to the conclusion that there are no exact analytic solutions in terms of known (tabulated) functions of this elastica buckling problem. In the limits of large or small values of the slope of the deflected elastica, we expand asymptotically the above integrodifferential equation to nonlinear ODEs of the Emden–Fowler or Abel nonlinear type. In these cases, using the solution methodology recently developed in Panayotounakos [Appl. Math. Lett. 18:155–162, 2005] and Panayotounakos and Kravvaritis [Nonlin. Anal. Real World Appl., 7(2):634–650, 2006], we construct exact implicit analytic solutions in parametric form of these types of equations and thus approximate implicit analytic solutions of the original elastica buckling nonlinear ODE.
Elastica of barsBuckling analysisNonlinear ODEsAsymptotic analysisParametric solutions