FAQs/Frequently Asked Questions

        A beam is a horizontal structural member that is subjected to transverse loads.

      A column is a vertical structural member that is subjected to axial loads.

      The purpose of a footing is to transmit the load from the entire structure to the foundation.

      A load path is the transmission of loads from one member (Ex: Beam) to the other (Ex: Girder), where the load is transferred downward, from the roof of the structure, all the way down to the foundation.
      From Topics --> Steel Design page


      • Can be used to design high-rise buildings (skyscrapers)
      • Has a good tensile and compressive strength (equally)
      • Is a ductile material, and is, therefore, strong enough to withstand external pressures (earthquake, wind, etc.)
      • Is a recyclable material and the recycled material can be used for the construction of a new structure (has good scrap value)
      • Is a lightweight material, therefore, it can span long distance
      • Does not require formwork, unlike concrete which makes it cheaper than reinforced concrete
      • Is easily erectable which speeds up the construction process and it is easy to assemble/disassemble the structure
      • Has less repair and maintenance costs compared to concrete
      • There is a variety of connections types (welds, bolts, rivets)


      • Has less fire resistance compared to concrete, therefore, it needs fireproofing to resist fire damage; can melt at very high temperatures
      • Has buckling problems
      • Exact measurements have to be known before the transport and delivery of steel because the steel fabrication company does the manufacturing off-site (prefabrication)
      • Corrosion/Rusting issues therefore needs anti-rust paint
      • Requires skilled labor

      From Topics --> Steel Design page

      Because you are designing based on the LOAD PATH which starts from the roof and ends at the foundation.

      Mechanics is a branch of physics that deals with motion and the behavior of bodies under the effect of forces.

      First law: "A body at rest will remain at rest, and a body in motion will remain in motion unless it is acted upon by an external force."(Equilibrium/Inertia)

      Second law: "The force acting on an object is equal to the mass of that object times its acceleration." (Accelerated motion, F = ma)

      Third law: "For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction." (Action-reaction)
      From Topics--> Physics(Classical Mechanics) page

      Structural Analysis is the forecast of the performance of a structure under prescribed loading conditions. The results that are of interest are: the deflections, reactions and stresses.
      From Topics --> Structural Analysis page

      Engineering Statics is one of the branches of rigid-body mechanics that focuses on the study of bodies in equilibrium/at rest (acceleration = zero) or with a constant velocity.
      From Topics --> Engineering Statics page

      Solid mechanics/mechanics of materials/strength of mechanics/mechanics of deformable mechanics is one of the branches of deformable-body mechanics that focuses on the study of solid objects that can change shape or size as a result of loading or thermal effects.
      From Topics --> Mechanics of Materials page

      As you go from Loading diagram [w(x)] --> Shear diagram [V(x)] --> Moment diagram [M(x)], you have to integrate. But if you follow the opposite route from Moment diagram[M(x)] --> Shear diagram [V(x)] --> Load diagram [w(x)], you have to take the derivative. In other words, in terms of derivatives, you have the following relationships:
      V(x) = dM/dx,
      w(x) = dV/dx

      Refer to image shown below.

      Relationships between Loading, Shear and Moment diagram

      Relationships between Loading, Shear and Moment diagram
      Figure : Relationships between Loading, Shear and Moment diagram

      From Topics --> Engineering Statics page

      Concrete is a mixture of fine and coarse aggregates that are held together by a cement paste (cement mixed with water) that hardens over time.
      From Topics --> Reinforced concrete page

      Reinforced concrete is a composite material that combines the usage of both concrete and steel where the steel reinforcement is used to counteract the lack of tensile strength in concrete.
      From Topics --> Reinforced concrete page


      • Has good tensile strength compared to plain concrete
      • Is shapeless like water, it can be made into any kind of shape
      • Strength increases with age
      • Is fire resistant
      • Is a better material for a strong foundation because of its heaviness in weight, which is the reason why most building have a reinforced concrete foundation
      • Needs less skilled labor compared to steel


      • Is more expensive than structural steel
      • Is a heavy material, therefore, it cannot span long distance like steel
      • Takes more time in construction compared to steel
      • Is not recyclable for the construction of a new structure (has nil scrap value)
      • Not a good material for seismic prone areas

      From Topics --> Reinforced concrete page





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