Author: The Institution of Structural Engineers
3 February 2014
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The Institution of Structural Engineers
While the advancement of computer based analysis continues to grow exponentially within the field of structural engineering, the tools that are used to analyse structures by hand are no less relevant. Many would argue that such tools are even more vital today than they have ever been if we are to fully understand the output of analysis applications. With this in mind, this Technical Guidance Note describes one of the most powerful analysis tools available: moment distribution. Moment distribution is a method by which statically indeterminate structures are analysed elastically. It’s based on the relative stiffness of elements that make up a structure and shifts bending moments from one section of the structure to another until they become balanced. Once this balance has been achieved, the forces and bending moments within the structure are modelled. (This article was updated in October 2016 to reflect errata issued since its original publication.)
This Technical Guidance Note describes the concept of biaxial bending of columns, as well as the effect direct bending has on column design. The guidance given here can be applied to columns made from any material, be it steel, concrete, timber or even glass.
This Technical Guidance Note explains the way in which reinforced concrete drawings should be read. In many cases reinforced concrete drawings are more diagrammatic than their general arrangement counterparts and carry with them their own unique set of rules and nomenclature. Note that the guidance provided here is based on European codes of practice; for all other regions the reader is directed to local guidelines on reinforced concrete detailing methods. This technical guidance note does not cover the rules governing the detailing reinforced concrete. That is a far more complex subject which is dealt with in The Institution of Structural Engineers’ publication Standard Method of Detailing Structural Concrete (3rd edition).