Review Category : Articles

Designing Best Value Solutions

Today’s design, engineering, and construction professionals face a host of complex construction challenges. Industry initiatives focus on building a safer, more sustainable built environment. Owners seek maximum return on investments. Engineers pursue innovative technologies that maximize asset life and minimize life-cycle costs.

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Reinforcing Bar Development Length using the Provisions of ACI 318

A key aspect of reinforced concrete design is the calculation of the required reinforcing area and the required development and splice lengths for proper reinforcement details. In most structures, the reinforcement is cast with the concrete and subsequent concrete pours, i.e. “new” concrete, is placed around the cast-in-place reinforcement protruding from the existing concrete.

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Structural Engineers and Climate Change

Anthropogenic (human-caused) emissions of greenhouse gases (GHG) into the atmosphere, particularly carbon dioxide, are causing dramatic changes to the earth’s climate and oceans. These changes are described in detail in the authoritative and comprehensive reports written by the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.

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Changes to the 2018 International Building Code (IBC) and 2018 International Existing Buildings Code (IEBC) were approved by the International Code Council (ICC) during their 2015/2016 code development cycle. This article outlines changes to the code requirements for wood construction, the majority of which are changes to the IBC. Only a few changes for exterior balconies involve the IEBC.

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Part 1: Three Critical Steps to Finding Your Next Job

Searching for a job can be a long and challenging process. Regardless if you are a recent college graduate or an experienced engineer, read on to learn about the three critical steps that will result in a more productive and helpful job search.

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The extraordinary devastation left by storms, earthquakes, and wildfires in 2017 dominated the news media for months. Many of our colleagues around the globe were directly affected by these events but still rose to the challenge by volunteering as emergency responders or by joining teams to study and report on lessons learned. Whether impacted or not, structural engineers keep the public safe from disasters every day.

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Throughout the ages, humanity has been warned – do not build on weak foundations. Even the “Good Book” uses a parable of a home built on sand to emphasize the importance of a solid foundation in life.

However, the wise sages of the past did not live in today’s fast-paced world. As hard as most members of today’s society try to be good stewards of the land, some things get pushed to the wayside… literally.

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Helical piles are subject to special inspections, similar to deep foundations, but engineers have several choices when looking for the best way to install them. Currently, there are no standards for the installation of helical piles. However, helical piles should be installed and inspected in accordance with all relevant requirements listed in the governing building code.

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Modern engineering tools and techniques enable structural engineers to continually redefine the limits of possibility. Nowhere is this more evident than in supertall buildings, where controlling wind-induced sway has become a critical aspect of project success.

The use of tuned mass damping systems has become a mainstay in attaining this control, in large part because each custom-designed system can be tuned to match the as-built characteristics of the building. They also provide a much more efficient solution than adding more mass or stiffness.

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