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Economics of Structural Steel Work Columns

Economics of Structural Steel Work Columns

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Published by thomas kilian

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Published by: thomas kilian on Jul 15, 2009
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10.1 Introduction
Columns, especially compound or latticed columns, represent one of the more complexcategories of steelwork components in a typical building structure. Because of the varietyof components that can be connected to columns, for example trusses, girders, beams,sheeting girts, vertical bracing, eaves struts, crane girders, etc, it is usually not possible toachieve a great degree of repetitiveness in column production. For this reason everyeffort should be made to achieve whatever economies are possible through careful designof the basic column.
10.2 Column sections
Typical column cross sections are shown in Fig 10.1. As in the case of beams (seeSection 8.2), plain
- or H-sections should be used wherever possible in view of theirsimplicity. It is preferable to use a heavier plain section than a lighter compound onebecause of the high labour content of the latter. The plated
-section shown in detail (d) ofFig 10.1 would be cheaper than the welded-plate section in (f), while the box section in (g)would be used only in special cases of very high loading. A square or rectangular SHS asshown in detail (c) is very efficient on a loadmass basis, but the much higher cost per tonwould have to be provided for.
Fig 10.1: Column cross sections
(e) ( f ) (g) (h)(a) (b) (c) (d)
For comments on compound column sections and a description of composite steel-concrete columns, refer to Section 7.6. This section should also be referred to for detailsof columns in multi-storey buildings. In such columns the load reduces progressivelyupwards, enabling smaller sections to be used. It is, however, more economical to reducethe number of site splices to a minimum rather than to reduce the section size every oneor two storeys. With column lengths up to 15 m or more, it is possible to locate splices atthree to four-storey intervals. The saving in splicing costs will far outweigh the saving incolumn section material that would be achieved with closer splice spacing.
10.3 Latticed columns
Latticed construction is used for columns of great length to limit deflection, or in buildingshousing heavy overhead cranes. Examples of the latter are shown in Figs 5.3 and 5.13.For latticed columns consisting of two equal-serial-size
-section legs connected bydouble-plane angle lacing, the lacing configurations most commonly used are as shown inFig 10.2.The layout shown in detail (a) is by far the more efficient, for the following reasons:
Fig 10.2: Lacing of columns
For a given length of column the total length of lacing bars is about 0,83 times thatof the latticed column shown in layout (b).
Both the length of each diagonal lattice bar and the force in it are about 0,82 timesthose in detail (b), so a lighter section can be used.
For a given length of column the number of bars required is about 0,86 times thosein (b), resulting in far fewer end connection welds to the column legs.
The ends of the bars can be more snugly nested into the inner faces of the columnflanges, allowing longer welds to be laid.
The shear deflection of the column under transverse loading is reduced.The only disadvantage of layout (a) is that the laterally unsupported lengths of the columnlegs (i.e. for buckling about their y-axes) are slightly greater, but this is very rarely critical.The lacing bars should be welded to the inner faces of the column legs, as shown inFig 10.3, rather than to the outer faces. This results in a more compact overall size ofcolumn (in plan), a lesser total length of lacing bar and greatly improved appearance.Also, in a column with legs of equal serial size but of unequal massm, the distancebetween the inner faces of the flanges on both legs is equal, whereas the distancebetween the outer faces is not.
10.4 Box columns
Box columns, which are only used when large loads have to be carried over a great heightor when aesthetic considerations govern, may be of compact cross section, as in detail(a) of Fig 10.4, or be large enough to allow internal access for making joints, painting, etc,as shown in detail (b). In the latter case, because of the large width-to-thickness ratios ofthe plates, internal stiffeners or diaphragms are required. Sufficient clearance must beavailable to accommodate a vertical access ladder.
Fig 10.3: Welding of lacing bars

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