Thesis Proposal

The work done in the Fall semester is ultimately used to identify a problem which can be addressed during the Spring semester redesign. This proposal is the formal presentation of that Spring redesign.

To view each proposal and the revisions made, click the images to the right.








Depth: Progressive Collapse

A scenario has been created where the occupant has been changed to the Department of Defense, who requires structures to be directly analyzed to resist progressive collapse. The overall goal for this study is to provide the typical structural engineer a reference for major decisions that must be made in the schematic design phase. The first decisions studied in this investigation will be the economic benefit of increasing the complexity of the progressive collapse analysis method. The second decision studied will be the viability of a concrete system versus a steel system.

The Unified Facilities Criteria design code, written by the Department of Defense, will be used to analyze all progressive collapse criteria. All designs will also be checked against the standard ASCE 7 strength and serviceability requirements. The existing two-way concrete slab system will be analyzed using Tie-Force, Enhanced Local Resistance and Linear Alternative Path analysis. An alternative steel structural system will be design using the aforementioned methods, along with the non-linear method.






MAE Incorperation

Much of the structural calculations will rely upon material learned in master-level courses. Multiple ETABS computer models will be created to analyze the structures. Material and techniques learned in AE 597A, Computer Modeling of Building Structures, will be used to create the models. Several concepts, such as rigid diaphragm constraints, insertion points and panel zone modeling, will be used to create the computer models.

The steel system analysis will rely on several undergraduate and graduate courses. When using the Alternative path method of progressive collapse analysis, steel member strengths are largely determined by the connection strength. Due to this limitation, all moment connections types will have to be selected and analyzed. Knowledge from AE 534, Steel Connections, will largely be used for this connection analysis.





Breadth 1: Architecture

Landscape and site elements, like walls and bollards, will be used to create this standoff distance around the office building. A blast resistant metal panel and glazing system will be selected from manufacture’s literature. The manufacturer will also be contacted for cost estimation purposes. To create a more optimized structural steel layout alternations will be made to the architectural layout. Maintaining the same building height in a steel redesign will adversely affect its economy, and thereby skew the structural system cost comparison. To address this height factor, the 90’ building height limitation will be eliminated from the building constraints.




Breadth 2: Construction Management

The goal of this breadth is to compare the two material’s costs and the advantages of the more complex analysis, a detailed cost comparison will be conducted on each of the designs. 2011 RS Means Detailed Cost Estimate data will be used to assemble all estimates. As part of the estimation process a construction schedule will be created. To allow the results of this study to be easily implemented by other engineers, both the national average and city cost index for the greater Washington D.C. area will be used and compared. Throughout the design process constructability will be addressed and noted. Constructability issues may include: requiring girders to be deeper than infill beams, using the same reinforcing and connection details throughout the building or many other issues.