In architecture, an arch is a curved structural element that spans an opening and supports the weight of the structure above it. Arches are commonly used in both ancient and modern architecture, and they can be found in a wide variety of buildings, including bridges, tunnels, and churches.
Arches are typically made from a series of wedge-shaped blocks, or voussoirs, that are arranged in a curved shape and held in place by a keystone at the top of the arch. When the weight of the structure above is applied to the arch, the force is distributed outward and downward along the arch and into the supporting columns or walls.
There are several different types of arches that are commonly used in architecture, including round arches, pointed arches, horseshoe arches, and lancet arches. The type of arch used depends on the style of the building and the architect's design intent.
In addition to providing structural support, arches can also serve a decorative purpose in architecture. They can be used to create a sense of rhythm and repetition in a building's design, or to add a sense of grandeur and elegance to a space.
Overall, arches are an important and versatile architectural element that have been used throughout history to support and beautify a wide variety of structures.
- A curved structure that supports the weight of the material above it.
- A curved structure capable of spanning a space while supporting significant weight.
- A curved or pointed structural element that is supported at its sides.
- A portion of rock left standing at the intersection of a mine wall and roof, to support the roof.
- Curved roof of underground opening. See also: dome
- A curved structural member used to span openings or recesses; also built flat. Structurally, an arch is a piece or assemblage of pieces so arranged over an opening that the supported load is resolved into pressures on the side supports and practically normal to their faces. ACSG, 1
- A part of a furnace; a crown. ASTM
- To heat a pot in a pot arch. ASTM
- One of the five chambers of a brick kiln; also, the fire chamber in certain kinds of furnaces and ovens. Webster 3rd
- The roof of a reverberatory furnace.