A study of elastic wave propagation in a curved beam (circular ring) is presented. The governing equations of motion are formulated in two forms based on Timoshenko beam theory. Solutions are obtained using the method of characteristics, whereby a numerical scheme employing higher-order interpolation is proposed for the finite difference equations. Results obtained are verified by experiments; it is found that use of the higher-order numerical scheme improves correlation with experimental results. Comparison of the relative accuracy between the two mathematical formulations—one in terms of generalized forces and velocities and the other in terms of generalized displacements—shows the former to be mathematically simpler and to yield more accurate results.

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