The entire process of structural planning and design calls for not only creativity and intellectual thinking, but also a thorough understanding of practical considerations like current design regulations and bye-laws, supported by a wealth of experience, institutional knowledge, and judgement.

It is important to note that any construction that is being built must be durable for the length of time that is wanted and must meet the efficiency requirements for which it is intended.

Depending on the functional requirements and aesthetic preferences, different types of structural design can be used.

structural engineering design elements

Common Elements of Structural Design are

Rigid frame:  It is a structure that is supported by a framework with welded joints. The structural members, such as beams and columns, can withstand a certain amount of bending moment, shear load, and axial load. Rigid frames are often used for buildings and industrial structures.

Truss:  A truss is a type of structure made of interconnected triangles. It is used to support roofs, bridges, towers, and other structures.

Cable:  a structure that has a flexible shape and transfers the load to the supports by tension. The structural members, such as wires or ropes, can span long distances with minimal sagging. Cables are often used for suspension bridges, cable-stayed bridges, and cable cars.

Arch: a structure that has a curved shape and transfers the load to the supports by compression. The structural members, such as masonry or steel, can resist large span loads with minimal material. Arches are often used for monuments, aqueducts, and tunnels.

Shell: A shell is a type of structure that is used to enclose space. It is commonly used in domes, vaults, and other structures.

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Frame: A frame is a type of structure that is made up of interconnected members, such as columns and beams. It is commonly used in buildings, bridges, and other structures.

Tensegrity: Tensegrity is a type of structure that uses tension and compression to create a stable structure. It is commonly used in sculptures and other artistic installations.

Structural Engineering design procedure

The procedure for structural design involves several steps, which can vary depending on the type and complexity of the structure being designed. Here is a general outline of the structural design procedure:

  1. Determine the design requirements: The first step is to determine the purpose and function of the structure, as well as any relevant design codes and standards that must be followed.
  2. Analyse the loads: The next step is to determine the loads that the structure will be subjected to, such as gravity, wind, seismic, and snow loads. This requires a thorough understanding of the environmental conditions in the area where the structure will be built.
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  1. Select a structural system: Based on the design requirements and load analysis, a suitable structural system can be selected. This may involve considering various options, such as trusses, beams, arches, cables, shells, frames, and tensegrity.
  2. Determine member sizes and shapes: Once the structural system has been selected, the sizes and shapes of the individual members can be determined based on the loads they will be subjected to. This typically involves performing calculations using appropriate formulas and software.
  1. Check member strength and stability: After sizing the members, their strength and stability can be checked to ensure they meet the design requirements. This involves analysing the loads and stresses in each member, as well as checking for buckling and other modes of failure.
  1. Specify materials and connections: Once the member sizes and shapes have been determined and checked, the materials and connections can be specified. This includes selecting the appropriate types of materials, such as steel, concrete, wood, or composite materials, and specifying the details of the connections between the members.
  1. Prepare construction drawings: Finally, construction drawings can be prepared, which provide detailed plans and specifications for the construction of the structure. These drawings typically include detailed drawings of the members, connections, and other structural components, as well as specifications for materials and construction methods.

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