In this study, the non-linear buckling behavior of cross-ply laminated orthotropic truncated conical shells under axial load has been investigated. The basic relations of the cross-ply laminated orthotropic truncated conical shells are derived using the von Karman-Donnell-type of kinematic non-linearity. Then modified Donnell type non-linear stability and compatibility equations are obtained and are solved. Finally, the influences of the number and ordering of layers and the variations of the conical shell characteristics on the non-linear axial buckling load are investigated. Comparison with available results is satisfactorily good. (C) 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.