Review Category : Articles

I have exciting news to share with all of you. During the second week of October, from the 11th through the 14th, the structural engineering community will descend upon Washington, D.C., for the 25th annual NCSEA Structural Engineering Summit. This promises to be our best Summit yet, and I hope that you will make time in your busy schedule to join us. Attendees will include the best and brightest our profession has to offer, including our Member Organization Delegates and some of their officers, the NCSEA Board of Directors and staff, an excellent group of presenters, and many of our young members. This is your opportunity to meet and mingle with all of them.

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The option to use structural steel supplied and fabricated in foreign countries for projects constructed in the United States is a realistic one for many projects in today’s market. Typically, the most obvious factor that is considered by the project team is the economic impact of doing so. However, in addition to economics, project teams must also consider factors that may have a significant impact on the project outcome, including project-specific issues, design requirements, material substitutions, procurement, fabrication, and construction concerns.

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Regardless of your familiarity with Quality Based Selection (QBS), there are certain basics of business that all engineers should understand, even if you are not in management. Structural engineering is a professional service business. The overwhelming majority of structural engineers are compensated based on the amount of time spent on a client’s project. If you are a business owner, you know that each and every proposal starts out with the question “How much time will the project take?”

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Part 1

Construction Science and Engineering, Inc., an architectural and engineering firm, has investigated several low slope roof applications with water stains, ponding, framing damage on the lower side of the roof span, and structural collapse. Further examination typically reveals a relatively level surface when compared to other roof locations (Figure 1). A similar occurrence is often found in exterior deck applications.

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Gustav Lindenthal, a leading proponent of continuous bridges, finished his Sciotoville Bridge (STRUCTURE, May 2017) in August 1917. In late 1922, a call went out to the largest and best-known engineers of the country to design three bridges (the Burnside, Ross Island, and Sellwood) across the Willamette River in Portland, Oregon. A group consisting of Ira Hedrick and Robert Kremers (Kremers was the local connection and had previously worked as an Engineer for the City) was awarded the contract to design the three bridges.

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Structural Engineering Engagement and Equity (SE3) Committee Survey Results

In Part 1 of this series (STRUCTURE, April 2017), the results of the 2016 SE3 Study focused on overall career satisfaction, development, and advancement. This article highlights survey findings regarding compensation, overtime, and the gender pay gap. A full report that includes findings on work-life balance, flexibility benefits, and caregiving can be found at SE3project.org/full-report.

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Confirming Your Intentions and the Interpretation by Others

There are three aspects of field Quality Assurance for construction projects: Inspection by the Building Official, Special Inspection by the owner’s special inspection agency, and Structural Observation performed by the Engineer of Record (EOR) or his/her designee. All three of these functions are important and non-redundant. As the scale and complexity of a project increases, the more important it becomes that all three functions are provided.

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The NCSEA Structural Licensure Committee, like many of us, occasionally “takes stock” to reflect and make resolutions for the future. Over the past few years, the Committee has advocated for structural licensure in various ways: articles, newsletters, member surveys, presentations, and communication with other organizations. Though structural licensure has yet to be established in many jurisdictions, NCSEA continues to believe its implementation would offer better protection to the public and ultimately save lives.

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