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span

1. Psychol the amount of material that can be processed in a single mental act
2. short for wingspan
3. a unit of length based on the width of an expanded hand, usually taken as nine inches
Collins Discovery Encyclopedia, 1st edition © HarperCollins Publishers 2005

Span

The interval between any two consecutive supports of a beam, girder, or truss or between the opening of an arch.
Illustrated Dictionary of Architecture Copyright © 2012, 2002, 1998 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All rights reserved
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Span

 

of a bridge, the part of a bridge that extends between the bridge piers and carries various loads, such as transportation vehicles, pedestrians, and winds, which it transfers to the piers.

A span consists of such bearing components as longitudinal beams or trusses, crossbeams or diaphragms, and slabs for the roadway. In arch bridges the main bearing components are the arches, which support the structure above them. Loads carried by spans are transferred to piers through bearing parts. The roadway slab of a span supports a roadbed and pedestrian sidewalks. The surface of the slab is paved with a layer of topping of asphalt or cement concrete and waterproofing. The material used for a span may be a metal, such as an aluminum alloy or steel, plain or reinforced concrete, native stone, or wood.

The span is the most important part of a bridge. The structural design of a bridge and its static diagram depend on the static diagram of the span. The span may be of the girder, frame, arch, suspension, guy, or combination type. The general architectural composition of a bridge is essentially dependent on the type of span. Ordinarily a span is rectilinear as viewed from the top, although the spans of modern bridges, viaducts, and overpasses over the junctions of transportation lines may have more complicated shapes and be spiraled, ringed, or branched.

The static diagram and the structural material used determine the way in which a span is constructed. Spans are usually built from prefabricated units manufactured in specialized plants or yards.


Span

 

in buildings and structures, the distance between the neighboring supports of horizontal structural elements. There are spans, for example, between the columns that support a roof truss and between the piers that support a bridge span. Standardized span dimensions that conform to the Unified Modules System are currently used in construction in the USSR.

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.

span

[span]
(aerospace engineering)
The dimension of a craft measured between lateral extremities; the measure of this dimension.
Specifically, the dimension of an airfoil from tip to tip measured in a straight line.
(engineering)
A structural dimension measured between certain extremities.
(mathematics)
For a set A, the intersection of all sets that contain A and have some specified property. Also known as hull.
For a set of vectors, the set of all possible linear combinations of those vectors. Also known as linear span.
(statistics)
The difference between the highest value and the lowest value in a range of values.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

bearing distance, span

The length of a beam between its bearing supports.

span

1. The interval between two terminals of a construction.
2. The distance apart of any two consecutive supports, esp. as applied to the opening of an arch.
3. A structural member (or part of a member) between two supports.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Architecture and Construction. Copyright © 2003 by McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

span

span
spanclick for a larger image
i. The tip-to-tip distance of a wing. Winglets, tip tanks, and tip pods are not included while measuring the span.
ii. The operating radial distance from the root to the tip of a rotating airfoil, such as helicopter rotors or turbine or compressor blades.
An Illustrated Dictionary of Aviation Copyright © 2005 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All rights reserved
References in periodicals archive ?
CONTACT: Handspan Adventure Travel, (011)04-9260-581; www.handspan.com.
Forget the handspan waists and ridiculously long legs, this season, a top model's most coveted asset is perfectly buffed and polished skin.
Our attitude can be summed up in one word - Barbie, the doll with the impossibly long legs, handspan waist and pneumatic cleavage.
"Eksakto lang na ikaw ay hihiga, tatayo, at meron lang ho sigurong dalawang dangkal na espasyo na pwede kang umikot yun lang (The space is just enough to lie down, stand up and there maybe about two handspans of space where one can turn around." Solda said.