Aluminium and Cold Formed Steel

Architectural requirements are continuously evolving: more volume, more natural light etc., but at the same time less weight is desired. To optimize on weight, producers of aluminium or cold formed steel profiles innovate to come up with ideal section shapes and efficient connection methods.The high complexity of the profiles leads to highly complex codes that require a specialist's approach and dedicated software tools.

Standard section types are available in the profile library (e.g. Sigma, C etc.) but almost every new building asks for a specific section. Their properties for aluminium and cold formed steel are a decisive factor when developing a new application.

E.g. for structural analysis, one should only take into account the effective working surface. The section is very often available as a CAD file, and can be imported directly in Scia Engineer for the calculation of its properties. For aluminium, also the stability behavior (e.g. buckling) depends on other factors like HAZ (heath affected zones), transversal welding etc. Specific checks are integrated according to the latest Eurocodes and American standards.

Effective section properties

The calculation of the effective area and inertia of a given profile is often a difficult problem. Scia Engineer includes tools to do this job in a simple and efficient way. Digital section drawings can be imported, properties are calculated and used for further calculations and code checks.

A complete list of material grades is available and can be extended by the user. All specific code prescriptions up to the latest correction sheets are integrated. If available, section properties from the producer can be used in the place of the code-derived properties.

Optimum code design

Checks are performed according these codes (EN1993-1-3 and EN1999 for the Eurocodes and AISI NAS 2007 for the American codes), and a detailed calculation note includes all used formulas, tables and references. The AutoDesign functionality makes it possible to optimize the dimensions of the section in order to obtain the optimal design.

To guarantee a continued high level of code implementation, our R&D engineers are active in several dedicated Eurocode commissions of several countries and have a close collaboration with the engineering workgroup of the “Aluminium Center Belgium”.