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EngSolutions RCB

Analysis & Design of Reinforced Concrete Buildings for Earthquake and Wind Forces
EngSolutions RCB is a structural engineering-software for 3D analysis and design of reinforced concrete buildings. EngSolutions RCB consists of several modules integrated into an exceptionally easy to use software package. Through EngSolutions RCB s graphical interface, it is possible to easily create, analyze and design complex building structures for earthquake and wind forces, according to different building codes. Creation of the structure, assignment of element properties, definition of supports and application of loads, are all performed interactively. Hence, there is no need for an input file. Generation of loads is fully automated releasing the engineer from lengthy manual calculations. Vertical floor loads can be automatically converted to span loads on adjoining beams and walls. Wind forces and earthquake forces can be generated automatically according to different international building codes. Once a building structure is created, the engineer can make changes, such as change coordinates, add or remove elements, add or remove stories, modify element properties, change support conditions, change loading, etc., and see the influence of these changes on the analysis and design results. The final building may be unsymmetrical and arbitrarily irregular in plan. Torsional behavior of the floors and interstory compatibility of the floors are properly modeled. The solution satisfies complete three-dimensional force equilibrium and displacement compatibility at the nodes. Modeling of partial diaphragms, such as mezzanines and openings is possible. It is possible also to model cases with multiple diaphragms at each level, allowing analyzing buildings consisting of several towers, rising from a common base structure at the lower levels. The program allows modeling the incremental construction of tall buildings, checking lateral story drifts, computing redundancy factors, and designing structural elements according to various seismic codes. The main technical features of EngSolutions RCB are the following: Operation under Windows XP/2000/98 based personal computers Automatic generation of seismic forces, static equivalent, spectral, and time-history, according to numerous international building codes, including: USA IBC-2003, ASCE 7-2005, UBC-97, UBC-94, NERPH-97, NERPH-85, Mexico RCDF-2004, GUAD-97, CFE-93, Panama REP-04 and REP-93, Colombia NSR-98 and CCCSR-84, Venezuela COVENIN-82, Peru E030-2000, Ecuador CEC-01 and CEC-93, Chile NCH433.Of93, Dominican Republic DNRS/SEOPC-80. Complete library of earthquake records. Automatic generation of wind forces, according to various international codes, including: USA ASCE7-95, ASCE 7- 88, UBC- 94, Mexico RCDF-87, CFE-93, Dominican Republic DNRS/SEOPC. Accurate modeling of torsion effects: The engineer may specify different design eccentricities based on inherent and accidental eccentricities, and may choose from different methods of modal combination available, including SAV, SRSS, CQC, 1/2 SAV+SRSS, and 0.25 SAV + 0.75 SRSS. Automatic distribution of floor loads to span loads on adjoining beams and walls, based on the actual analysis of the floor grid system. Various floor systems can be considered, including one-way and two-way slab systems as well as one-way and two-way joist systems. Automated incremental analysis to model the construction sequence of high-rise buildings. Instead of applying gravity loads in a single step, the analysis can model the sequential addition of floors to the structure. Graphical display of lateral inter-story drifts for checking compliance with building codes.

New finite element formulations for accurate modeling of buildings with shear walls. Seismic design of beams and columns: according to numerous international codes including ACI318-05, ACI-318-99, RCDF-04, NSR-98. Automated design of shear-walls risk zones. that includes dimensioning of boundary elements in high seismic

Boundary elements for shear walls can be design either according to the stress design method of the ACI-318-99 or to the strain method of UBC-97 and ACI-318-05. Automatic detailing of steel reinforcement for beams Buildings can be modeled as supported by theoretical dimensionless nodal supports or by rigid footings, including spread footings for columns, continuous footings for walls, combined footings and mats. Automatic re-sizing of footings. Design of spread and continuous footings. Specification of member end-releases Automatic generation of load combinations: according to several international codes. Structural elements can be separated into elements that are part of the lateral force resisting system only, elements that are part of the gravity load resisting system and elements are part of both systems. Inertia modification-factors for analysis based on cracked sections. Design and design check for structural steel members according to the Load and Resistance Factor Design (LRFD) methods of AISC and RCDF. Creation of DXF files.

IDEALIZATION The EngSolutions RCB building is idealized as an assemblage of column, beam, brace and wall elements, interconnected by horizontal floor diaphragm slabs, rigid in their own plane. The basic building geometry is defined with reference to a simple tri-dimensional grid system, formed by intersecting floor planes and vertical column axes. The building can be at any location and angle with respect to the tri-dimensional grid system. Column axes are defined through an architectural grid of either, longitudinal and transverse axes, in the case of rectangular buildings, or radial and circumferential axes, in the case of cylindrical buildings. Inclined columns and walls can be also modeled displacing their end nodes correspondingly. Columns, beams and braces are modeled as prismatic elements, which may be subjected to axial and shear forces and torsion and bending moments. Shear and bending can act in any two perpendicular planes. Member releases can be specified near the ends of members. The effects of the finite dimensions of the beams and columns on the stiffness of the structure are automatically included in the analysis. A panel element is implemented to model general 3D shear wall configurations, such as C-shaped core elevator walls, discontinuous shear walls, and walls with arbitrarily located openings. Several panel elements may be used to define a planar or 3D wall. The panel element is based on the quadrilateral assumed-stress hybrid shell element with rotational or drilling degrees of freedom developed by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, NASA (M. Aminpour, NASA Contractor Report 4282, Direct Formulation of a 4-Node Hybrid Shell Element With Rotational Degrees of Freedom, 1990). In-plane rotational stiffness is modeled implicitly in the formulation of the element, therefore, any beams or columns that frame into the element in the plane of the wall will receive full continuity without any special modeling. The panel element allows modeling both, structural walls and nonbearing walls.

GEOMETRY The EngSolutions RCB software includes Wizards that allow creating complex building structures easily with minimum user input. The geometry of building models in EngSolutions RCB is based on a grid system defined by an architectural grid system of axes, which define the plan view of the model, and floor levels, which define the elevation of the model. This three-dimensional grid is used to define the location of all structural elements.

Figure 1a. Defining building geometry based on architectural axes. Floor level 2

Figure 1b. Changing coordinates of nodes on a floor-by-floor basis. Floor level 6

Figure 1c. 3D-view (Faro del Saber Library, Structural Engineer A. Muns, Puerto Rico) Most building models can be created from a rectangular grid system of longitudinal and transversal axes. First, an orthogonal grid system is created, by specifying separation between axes. Then the coordinates of the axis intersections are edited to accommodate the real geometry of the building. The coordinates of nodes can be varied from floor to floor, allowing the creation of complex tridimensional building systems with a limited number of axes as shown in Figure 1.

LOADS AND LOAD CASES Loads in EngSolutions RCB are grouped into load cases. Load cases are independent loadings for which the structure is analyzed internally, such as dead load (DL), live load (LL), wind load (WL), earthquake load (EQ), snow load (SL), etc. There can be up to 15 independent load cases. Loads for any load case can be generated manually through graphical mouse interaction. Manual loads can be applied to nodes, members and walls. Loads can also be created automatically. Vertical slab loads can be automatically converted to span loads on adjoining beams and walls, based on the load properties assigned to each slab. These properties include the type of floor system, slab thickness, reinforcement direction, superimposed dead load, and values of uniform live load. The distribution of floor loads is based on tributary areas. Each slab panel is discretized into a grid of tiles. The computed slab shears are transformed into equivalent uniformly distributed loads on the supporting beams and walls. The above procedure is general and can handle irregular slab panels, as well as slab panels not supported along all its 4 edges. Wind and seismic loads can be created automatically according to various building codes.

Figure 2. Time history analysis (Sky Loft Tower, Structural Engineer J. Robert & Associates, Puerto Rico)

LOAD COMBINATIONS Load combinations are the loading conditions for which a building structure is designed. Load combinations are assembled as combinations of the load cases considered. An example of a load combination is: 1.4DL + 1.7LL, where DL is the dead load and LL is the live load. Once all Load cases to be considered have been generated EngSolutions RCB allows the user to automatically generate a set of load combinations as required by the selected building codes. There can be up to 150 load combinations.

ANALYSIS EngSolutions RCB performs finite element analyses that provide solutions in terms of nodal displacements, elements internal forces, and moments. The program computes the rigid segments of members to account for their finite size and computes the buckling loads of columns. The user is allowed selecting 1) the order of the analysis linear versus P-delta analysis and 2) the analysis type a conventional one-step total gravity analysis versus an automated incremental step-wise gravity analysis. EngSolutions RCB performs a Modes/Frequency Analysis that provides the solution for the free vibration response of the building in terms of its three-dimensional mode shapes and natural frequencies. Mode shapes, frequencies and modal participation factors are obtained using the Lanzos method with selective orthogonalization. EngSolutions RCB allows three types of seismic analyses: static equivalent analysis, spectral analysis, and time-history analysis.

ANALYSIS RESULTS EngSolutions RCB provides interactive graphic display of analytical results including the static deformed shape of the building, bending moment diagram, shear force diagram, axial force diagram, torsion moment diagram, wall internal forces, wall stresses (resultants, mid-plane, front face, back face), support reactions, shear ratio stress, story drifts, and mode shapes. Analysis results can be presented for any load case or for any load combination. The displayed results correspond to the load case or load combination currently active, which is always printed in the EngSolutions RCB main graphic window. The user may quickly change the active load case or load combination by clicking with the mouse its label. EngSolutions RCB also includes a command for the graphical display of story drifts (lateral displacement of one level relative to the level below), which allows immediate check of compliance with local building codes. The user may specify a displacement amplification factor to magnify drifts, along with a limit story-drift ratio (story-drift divided by story-height). The program shows column axes in different colors, depending on whether or not the amplified relative story drift ratio exceeds the specified limit value.

DESIGNING STRUCTURAL ELEMENTS Structural elements can be designed in accordance to the Strength Design Method of Building Code Requirements for Structural Concrete (ACI 318-05/02/99) and other international building codes. EngSolutions RCB computes the required steel reinforcement for any concrete section considering all design load combinations.

Although EngSolutions RCB is a mainly software for concrete design it includes commands for design and design check of steel members. The program includes design for various section shapes (W, M, S, T, C, L, 2L, P, etc) created manually or imported from the AISC library, which is included in EngSolutions RCB. The Steel design command includes command buttons for automatically resizing columns, beams, and braces.

Figure 5. Lateral story drift ratio (Sky Loft Tower) DESIGN RESULTS The design process is graphically displayed in EngSolutions RCB. Elements are drawn as they are designed in different colors, depending on the required amount of steel. Elements with insufficient cross section are marked in red. This way, the designer can clearly see which elements need to be resized. In

addition, EngSolutions RCB computes for all the designed elements, the volume of concrete and weight of steel required, which allows making cost analyses for various structural solutions. After the design process is finished, the user can display detailed design results for any element just by selecting it with the mouse, after activating the Design Results command.

APPLICATIONS A catalog containing selected models from projects in different countries that have been analyzed and designed with the structural software EngSolutions RCB can be downloaded from:
For further information please contact: EngSolutions, Inc. At: Ricardo E. Barbosa, Ph.D. 8170 SW 29th Ct. Ft. Lauderdale, FL 33328 Tel: (954) 370-6603 Fax: (954) 370-0150 Email: