If you have a sizeable building construction project ahead, you need to take into account all the latest engineering research so that the structure is not only well built but can stand up to the vagaries of mother nature and the stress of occupation. This is a subset of building engineering that's known as structural dynamics and it analyses how individual structures react to a variety of different loads through time. Why is it important for you to bring this level of analysis into the frame?
Seismic Activity and More
At one time, structural dynamics was only considered by building developers if the particular structure was built in an area of seismic activity. However, other considerations have now come into the picture, especially due to the types of material used in the industry and the ever-more ambitious dreams of the architect.
Today, it's important to consider structural dynamics in relation to how people will interact with it and how the various floors will be subject to different walking loads. Taller buildings are particularly vulnerable to the effects of wind, especially as they are becoming taller and slimmer by design.
Engineers and Architects
Analysts will first need to look at the projections for the building, so that they can create different loading models according to various scenarios. This will allow them to mathematically represent how parts of the building will react under load and allow them to produce designs that will take this into account.
Often, the structural engineer will clash with the architect, but this phase is designed to smooth everything out in the early phases. In the final analysis, the structural engineer will be the one to determine how a project structure would perform under load and how it will respond in various situations.
In order to complete these exercises, engineers and analysts take data provided to them from existing structures that are similar and apply this information as accurately as possible in the current case. Sophisticated computer programs are able to process huge amounts of data very quickly for this purpose.
Fundamentally, building designers and engineers are now able to create designs that not only resist loads placed on them, but may be able to react to them as well. This is sometimes known as performance-based design, which involves dynamic control of the structures, through various devices added during the creation phase.
Active and Passive Devices
Some devices are meant to be passive and will simply absorb threats such as seismic energy, to prevent damage to the structure. Active devices would behave like shock absorbers on a family car, damping the effect of certain loads.
If you're planning a complicated building, it's worth your while investing in a structural dynamics analysis to see how it could impact the practicality of your project. Contact companies like Jeffrey Hills and Associates for more information.