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Civil Engineering/assigning of loads


QUESTION: hii sir,

i have few doubts regarding assigning loads

1. assigning loads to columns,
many case studies for seismic evaluation in etabs do not assign any type of loads to the columns, whether i should assign loads to columns?
if yes,
which type of loads i should assign and how i should assign
whether as a point load or distributed load along the length.

2. is their any possibility of modelling masonry walls in etabs.
if not i can assign self weight of them to corresponding beams or not?

3. is it necessary to assign floor loads to surrounding beams. if yes all loads like live, dead, Floor finish are to be considered or not.

ANSWER: Dear Kolluru

1- Seismic loadings are not directly loaded on elements. They are resulted from the combination of inertia (mass) of the structure and motion (acceleration) of the earth. Then usually the seisimc loading are loaded on the most massive parts of the building like stories , which are distributed on elements according to their stiffness. Then for normal situation no need to load seismic forces along the height of the columns.
2- You can model masonnaries in etabs using material properties , but keep in mind that for nonlinear materials like non reinforced concrete and bricks you must be careful not to apply tensions more the resistance of the material, otherwise your model will not match the real state of the material. In addition you can apply self weights to girders and beams when ever and wherever you want.

3- You should consider the path of loading transfer. If so you can transfer the floor loading to surrounding beams. No difference between live and dead loading in this relation.



---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: hii sir
thanks for your valuable response,
most of my doubts are cleared so far, but i had few more doubts.

1, whether we should assign dead load and live load of structure on columns, if so how we should assign them (as point load or distributed load).

2, whether we need to assign self weight of columns, beams, floors or etabs wil take them automatically from the library.

3, and how we should calculate the live load.

thanks in advance

ANSWER: Dear Kolluru

1- not all the time but usually we dont assign loads on columns unless you have some lateral soil pressure loading. In this situation you have to apply loading along the height of the columns. Lateral soil pressure is live in nature but you have to use its own loading factors according to local or global codes of practice.

2- you can assign the self wight automatically where you need to check in the software.

3- Live loads are loadings which are based on occupation system. It differs from resilient building to factories. Then you should consult your local codes of practice.


---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: thank you very much sir,

i am not clear with the second one sir. please can you elaborate the answer.

and why we do such thing only in case of some lateral soil pressure loading in case of 1st answer and why we don't apply load on columns in normal cases.

thanks in advance

Dear Kolluru

There is an option in etabs where you can consider the self weight as any categuory of loading you need ( usually dead load).

You need to apply a distributed loading on the column where it is needed. My question is when you think that you need a distributed loading on the column? the retaining wall on the basement may transfer soil pressure loading od the column. The wind loading may be distributed on side column with similar mechanism and so on. You should think about the mechanisms.


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Babak Esmailzadeh Hakimi


I can answer questions in Structural Engineering, Earthquake Engineering, Project Management and Project Control topics!


I am experienced in the area of earthquake engineering in electrical power industry, i.e. Lifeline Earthquake Engineering. My focus has been on structural seismic design of power installations. Recently I have got involved in project management in the category of constructional engineering.

Sinam Consulting Engineers Co.

Bs degree in Civil Engineering from Ferdowsi University ,1988, Mashhad Iran, Ms degree in Earthquake Engineering, Sharif University of Technology, 1993, Tehran, Iran

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