The objectives of the present study are to obtain experimental data on collapse strength of steel corrugated bulkhead models and also to develop a simple analytical formulation for ultimate strength useful in the design of corrugated bulkheads under static lateral pressure. Collapse tests on nine mild steel corrugated bulkhead models having five bays of corrugations are carried out, varying the corrugation angle, the plate thickness and the type of loading (axial compression and/or lateral pressure). Using the test data, the characteristics of the collapse mechanism for corrugated bulkheads are investigated. For purposes of rapid first cut estimates of strength, a new and simple analytical formulation for predicting the ultimate strength of corrugated bulkheads under hydrostatic pressure is derived based on an assumed stress distribution over the corrugation cross section at the ultimate limit state. The modeling error associated with the new formulation is established by comparing its predictions with the experimental results. The development of ultimate strength based design guidelines and the effect of design parameters such as the corrugation angle on ultimate strength of a corrugated bulkhead are then discussed. All experimental information and strength data are tabulated, which is a benefit in itself.

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