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# Design Parameters Page 1 of 5

## COMPUTERS AND STRUCTURES, INC., JUNE 2008

TUBULAR STEEL FRAME PUNCHING LOAD CHECK
TECHNICAL NOTE
This section describes the methodology used for the punching load check
when the steel design code is set to API RP2A-LRFD 97. Note that the steel
design code is specified in the steel design preferences. The preferences are
accessed using the Design > Steel Frame Design > View/Revise
Preferences command.
The design check is based on criteria published in Sections E.3.1 and E.3.2 of
the American Petroleum Institute 1993 reference.
Design Parameters
Joint Geometric Parameters
Figure 1 illustrates the some of the geometric parameters used in the
punching load check. They are as follows:
= Angle measured from the chord to the brace.
g = Gap distance.
t = Brace thickness.
T = Chord thickness.
d = Brace diameter.
D = Chord diameter.
In addition, three more geometric parameters are derived from those shown
in Figure 1. They are as follows:
T
t
=
D
d
=
2T
D
=

Overview of Punching Load Check Page 2 of 5
T
D
g
d
t

Chord
Brace
Brace

Figure 1: Joint Geometric Parameters

Chord Yield Strength
The chord yield strength is designated Fyc. It is taken as the smaller of the
yield strength, Fy, of the considered chord member and two-thirds of the
tensile strength, Fu, of the chord member.
The program performs the punching load check based on the requirements for
simple joints presented in Section E.3.1 of the American Petroleum Institute
1993 reference. In addition, if the joint classification associated with the
considered brace is specified as K Overlap, the punching load check also
considers the equations in Section E.3.2 of the reference.
Ultimate Capacities
The ultimate axial capacity, Puj, and ultimate bending capacity, Muj, are
calculated using API equations E.3-5 and E.3-6.
sin
T F
Q Q P
2
yc
f u uj
= Eqn. 1
Joint Check Ratios Page 3 of 5
( ) 0.8d
sin
T F
Q Q M
2
yc
f u uj
= Eqn. 2
Equation 2 is used for both in-plane and out-of-plane bending. In Equations 1
and 2, Qu is determined from API Table E.3-2 and Qf is calculated as
described in the following subsection. Note that it is also possible for the user
to directly specify values for Qu and Qf.
Calculation of Qf
The Qf value used in Equation 2 is calculated as follows.
2
f
A 1.0 Q = Eqn. 3
where,
= 0.030 for brace axial stress.
= 0.045 for in-plane bending stress.
= 0.021 for out-of-plane bending stress.
and,
yc q
2
OPB
2
IPB
2
AX
F
f f f
A
|
+ +
= Eqn. 4
In Equation 4 the terms
AX
f ,
IPB
f and
OPB
f are the factored nominal axial, in-
plane bending and out-of-plane bending stresses in the chord. The term
q
| is
the yield stress resistance factor and is taken to be 0.95.
Qf is set to 1.0 when all extreme fiber stresses in the chord are tensile. The
program considers this condition to be met when the axial stress in the chord
is tensile and 0 f f f
OPB IPB AX
> .
Joint Check Ratios
Joint check ratios are calculated based on API equations E.3-2, E.3-3 and E.3-
4. The following ratios are checked.
Overlapping Joints Page 4 of 5
0 1.
P
P
Ratio1
uj j
D
s =
|
Eqn. 5
0 1.
M
M
Ratio2
IPB
uj j
D
s
|
|
.
|

\
|
=
|
Eqn. 6
0 1.
M
M
Ratio3
OPB
uj j
D
s
|
|
.
|

\
|
=
|
Eqn. 7
2
OPB
uj j
D
2
IPB
uj j
D
uj j
D
M
M
M
M
P
P
2

cos 1 Ratio4
|
|
.
|

\
|
+
|
|
.
|

\
|
+
(
(

|
|
.
|

\
|
=
| | |
Eqn. 8
where,
PD = The factored axial load in the brace member.
MD = The factored bending moment in the brace member.
j
| = The resistance factor for tubular joints given in API Table E.3-1.
Note that this value can be specified by the user if desired.
In Equations 6, 7 and 8, IPB means in-plane-bending and OPB means out-of-
plane bending.
Overlapping Joints
For braces that are assigned a K Overlap joint classification, the additional
check described in this section is performed. The factored axial load
component of the brace perpendicular to the chord, P , is first calculated.
sin P P
D
= Eqn. 9
where PD is the factored axial load in the brace.
The Ultimate axial load component capacity of the brace perpendicular to the
chord,
uj
P , is calculated using API equation E.3-7.
2 w w
1
uj j uj
l t v 2
l
l
sin P P + = | Eqn. 10
References Page 5 of 5
where,
vw =
yc sh
F | .
sh
| = The AISC resistance factor for the weld.
tw = The lesser of the weld throat thickness and the thickness of the
thinner brace.
l = Circumference of brace contact with the chord, neglecting the
presence of the overlap.
l1 = Circumference for that portion of the brace that contacts the chord.
l2 = Projected chord length (one side) of the overlapping weld measured
perpendicular to the chord.
The ratio for overlapping joints is calculated using Equation 11.
uj
P
P
Ratio5

= Eqn. 11
References
American Petroleum Institute (API). 1993. Recommended Practice for
Planning, Designing, and Constructing Fixed Offshore Platforms Load
and Resistance Factor Design; API Recommended Practice 2A-LRFD
(RP 2A-LRFD). First Edition. July.