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RAM Concrete Gravity Analysis

V8i (SELECTseries 6)

User Manual
Last Updated: October 09, 2013

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RAM Concrete Gravity Analysis

User Manual

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RAM Concrete Gravity Analysis

User Manual

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Disclaimer

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RAM Concrete Gravity Analysis

User Manual

Table of Contents
Chapter 1: Introduction .......................................................................................................9
Chapter 2: RAM Concrete Gravity Analysis ........................................................................ 11
2.1
2.2
2.3
2.4
2.5

2.6

2.7

2.8
2.9

2.10

Invoking the Concrete Module ............................................................................................................................................11


The RAM Concrete Analysis Status .................................................................................................................................... 11
The Toolbars ................................................................................................................................................................................11
The 3-D Viewer Toolbar .....................................................................................................................................11
2.3.1
The Gravity Analysis Mode Toolbar ..............................................................................................................12
2.3.2
Mode ................................................................................................................................................................................................13
Criteria .......................................................................................................................................................................................... 13
Code ............................................................................................................................................................................ 13
2.5.1
Analysis ..................................................................................................................................................................... 13
2.5.2
Column Forces ........................................................................................................................................................19
2.5.3
Sidesway .................................................................................................................................................................... 20
2.5.4
Effective Length ..................................................................................................................................................... 21
2.5.5
Bracing .......................................................................................................................................................................22
2.5.6
Assign .............................................................................................................................................................................................22
Assign Column ........................................................................................................................................................23
2.6.1
Assign Beam ............................................................................................................................................................ 24
2.6.2
Assign Beam Lines ................................................................................................................................................24
2.6.3
Process ........................................................................................................................................................................................... 26
Analyze ...................................................................................................................................................................... 26
2.7.1
Results - FE Model Information ...................................................................................................................... 27
2.7.2
Results - Vertical Reactions .............................................................................................................................. 30
2.7.3
Results - Member Forces ................................................................................................................................... 31
2.7.4
Results - Displacements ..................................................................................................................................... 33
2.7.5
Reports ...........................................................................................................................................................................................34
Report Destination ............................................................................................................................................... 34
2.8.1
Reports ...................................................................................................................................................................... 34
2.8.2
View .................................................................................................................................................................................................34
Gravity Loads .......................................................................................................................................................... 34
2.9.1
Beam Lines ...............................................................................................................................................................35
2.9.2
Beam Line Numbers (only on the toolbar) ................................................................................................ 35
2.9.3
Model Colors / Design Colors toggle ............................................................................................................ 35
2.9.4
Exiting RAM Concrete Analysis .......................................................................................................................................... 36

Chapter 3: Technical Notes ................................................................................................37


3.1
3.2

Concrete Design Code .............................................................................................................................................................37


Analytical Model ....................................................................................................................................................................... 37
Geometry .................................................................................................................................................................. 38
3.2.1
Model Boundary Conditions .............................................................................................................................38
3.2.2
Member Fixity Conditions ..................................................................................................................................39
3.2.3
Models with Hanging Columns ....................................................................................................................... 40
3.2.4
Models with Offset Beams and Columns .....................................................................................................40
3.2.5
Material Properties .............................................................................................................................................. 41
3.2.6

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3.3

3.4

3.5

3.6
3.7

Section Properties ................................................................................................................................................ 42


3.2.7
Gravity Loads ............................................................................................................................................................................. 45
Load Properties ..................................................................................................................................................... 45
3.3.1
Self-Weight Calculations .................................................................................................................................... 46
3.3.2
Effects of Sloping Framing ................................................................................................................................ 47
3.3.3
Effects of One Way Slab Deck Orientation ................................................................................................. 48
3.3.4
Loads on Two-way Slab Deck .......................................................................................................................... 49
3.3.5
Loads on Slab Edges ..............................................................................................................................................49
3.3.6
Openings and Penetrations .............................................................................................................................. 51
3.3.7
Live Load Reduction ............................................................................................................................................ 53
3.3.8
Live Load Reduction in RAM Concrete ........................................................................................................ 54
3.3.9
Skip Loading .............................................................................................................................................................55
3.3.10
Analysis ..........................................................................................................................................................................................56
Global Coordinate System ................................................................................................................................. 56
3.4.1
Local Coordinate System ................................................................................................................................... 56
3.4.2
Element Formulations ........................................................................................................................................ 57
3.4.3
Wall Openings and Meshing ............................................................................................................................. 58
3.4.4
Two-way Slab Deck .............................................................................................................................................. 59
3.4.5
One-Way Deck ........................................................................................................................................................ 60
3.4.6
Transfer Columns on One-Way and Two-Way Slabs .............................................................................60
3.4.7
Hanging Columns off One-Way and Two-Way Slabs ............................................................................. 60
3.4.8
Transfer Walls on One-Way and Two-Way Slabs ................................................................................... 61
3.4.9
Rigid Floor Diaphragm ........................................................................................................................................ 61
3.4.10
Multiple Diaphragms ...........................................................................................................................................61
3.4.11
P-Delta Effects ........................................................................................................................................................ 62
3.4.12
Rigid End Zones ...................................................................................................................................................... 62
3.4.13
Analysis Error Messages ....................................................................................................................................65
3.4.14
Gravity Design Forces .............................................................................................................................................................66
Column Gravity Forces ....................................................................................................................................... 66
3.5.1
Beam Gravity Forces ............................................................................................................................................68
3.5.2
Wall Gravity Forces ..............................................................................................................................................71
3.5.3
Deflections ...................................................................................................................................................................................73
References ................................................................................................................................................................................... 77

Chapter 4: RAM Concept Column and Wall Force Integration ..............................................79


Chapter 5: RAM Concrete Gravity Analysis Reports ........................................................... 85
5.1
5.2
5.3
5.4
5.5
5.6
5.7
5.8
5.9
5.10
5.11
5.12

General Comments on Reports ...........................................................................................................................................85


Concrete Model Data ...............................................................................................................................................................86
Member Analysis Properties ............................................................................................................................................... 87
Vertical Reactions .....................................................................................................................................................................87
Analysis Criteria ........................................................................................................................................................................87
Beam Load Diagram ................................................................................................................................................................ 88
Beam Line Force Envelope ................................................................................................................................................... 88
Beam Deflection ........................................................................................................................................................................ 88
Column Forces ........................................................................................................................................................................... 89
Concept Column Forces ......................................................................................................................................................... 89
Wall Forces ..................................................................................................................................................................................89
Concept Wall Forces ................................................................................................................................................................90

RAM Concrete Gravity Analysis

User Manual

Introduction

RAM Concrete Gravity Analysis is used to calculate all gravity concrete beam and column forces. The
gravity forces are calculated using finite element analysis of each floor in a structure. The reactions from
each floor's analysis are carried down and automatically applied to the analysis of the floor below. A
quadrilateral finite element mesh is generated for a floor if it contains a two way deck within a slab edge
loop on that floor. The program automatically considers skip loading for live loads on the beam lines
lying under one way decking if desired. A beam line lying under a two way deck can have skip loading
cases only if line and point live loads are applied directly on it. Currently, the surface loading applied to
two way decks does not generate any skip loading cases on beam lines. The live load reduction may also
be applied if desired and can be applied to beams, columns and walls. For concrete columns, the forces
include the effect of skip loading at the top and bottom of the column. For beams, the envelope of all the
skip-loaded live loads is obtained. These column and beam gravity forces can then be combined with
lateral forces from RAM Frame and used for design in the RAM Concrete Column and Beam modes.
Chapter 2 provides an overview of the program and its commands, and gives a brief description of the
output reports available. It explains basic principles of the RAM Concrete Gravity Analysis.
Chapter 3, Technical Notes, provides an explanation of the technical issues, assumptions, and code
interpretations implemented in RAM Concrete Gravity Analysis. It is critical that the engineer studies
and understands this chapter very well to gain insight into how these assumptions affect the analysis.
Chapter 4 discusses the integration of column and wall forces from RAM Concept into the RAM Concrete
Analysis.
Chapter 5 provides a description of the information in the Reports in this mode.

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RAM Concrete Gravity Analysis allows the engineer to obtain concrete beam and column forces from all
gravity loads applied to the structure, using finite element analysis.
This chapter is an overview of the Concrete Gravity Analysis mode (hereafter referred to as the Concrete
Analysis Mode) along with a brief discussion of its use. More specific information on each of the
commands is available in the on-line help.

2.1 Invoking the Concrete Module


Image

Description
The RAM Concrete Analysis mode is accessed through the RAM Manager. This can
be accomplished by clicking the RAM Concrete button on the Module toolbar or
by selecting RAM Concrete from the Design Menu.

2.2 The RAM Concrete Analysis Status


The RAM Concrete Analysis mode makes use of data from the RAM Modeler, RAM Steel and RAM Frame.
For this reason, any changes to the model from either of these modes will affect the RAM Concrete
Analysis status.
Issuing the command File Model Status will bring up a dialog box that explains the current status of
the model. If the model is in a state such that it cannot be analyzed or that the beam and column postprocessors cannot be accessed, then an explanation of the reasons for the current status is provided.
For more information on Model Status, see the RAM Manager manual Model Status chapter.

2.3 The Toolbars


2.3.1 The 3-D Viewer Toolbar
The top toolbar in the RAM Concrete Gravity Analysis mode is common among all the RAM Concrete
modes and the 3D-Viewer. For more information on this toolbar, please see the 3-D Viewer Manual.

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The Toolbars

2.3.2 The Gravity Analysis Mode Toolbar


Image

Menu Item
Concrete Mode
Assign - Column Size

Assign - Beam Size

Assign - Concrete Gravity Beam Fixity

Assign - Beam Line Numbers - Automatic

Assign - Beam Line Numbers - Manual

Assign - Column Sidesway

Assign - Column Effective Length

Analyze

Results - View Finite Element Model

Results - View Vertical Reactions

Results - View Member Forces

Results - Displacements

View - Gravity Loads

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Mode
Image

Menu Item
View - Beam Lines

Display Beam Line Numbers (toolbar only)

2.4 Mode
The Mode menu is used for changing between the Concrete Analysis, Concrete Beam, Concrete Column
and Concrete Shear wall modes. A checkmark appears beside the mode that is currently active. The
drop-down combo box located on the tool bar can be used for this purpose as well.

2.5 Criteria
The criteria set in the criteria dialog boxes are global criteria that affect all structural members unless
they are overwritten using one of the assign commands or the View/Update dialog box.
When any criteria are changed, it invalidates the analysis and any design that was done in Concrete
Column or Concrete Beam. Designs that were "frozen" in Concrete Beam or Concrete Column will be
saved and checked against the new criteria when the next design is performed.

2.5.1 Code
The code selection option is made in the RAM Concrete Analysis mode. To change the design code, select
Code under the Criteria menu.

2.5.2 Analysis
Select Criteria-Analysis to display the analysis criteria dialog box. Analysis criteria allow the user
control over the analytical model that is created, as well as the number of load cases that are generated.
These criteria also control the quantity of forces that are extracted for the design modes as described
below. For detailed technical information refer to the technical chapter of this manual.
Analysis
Stations

An analysis station is a single location along the length of a beam at which forces are
calculated for consideration in the beam design mode (see Section 3.5.2). The user can
control the number of stations along each concrete beam. These stations are also the
locations at which the design checks will be performed. The larger the number of
stations the more forces are saved and checked in design for each beam.

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The number of stations on any span will be based on the controlling of the two criteria
in this frame (see example below). For beams spanning between columns, the stations
are always calculated based on the clear length (face-to-face of columns). For beams
supported on girders the stations are calculated based in the center-to-center span
length.
Minimum number of stations per beam : Specify the minimum number of stations per
span of each physical beam. For a cantilever beam the cantilever and back-span are
considered separate spans for the purposes of these criteria.
Maximum spacing between stations : Specify the maximum spacing the user wants
between any two adjacent stations.
Example
Minimum number of stations per beam = 10
Maximum spacing between adjacent stations = 12" (250mm)

Resulting number of stations on the cantilever


English: maximum( 10, 72"/12" + 1 ) = 10
SI: maximum (10, 1800mm/250mm + 1) = 10
Resulting number of stations on the back-span
English: maximum( 10, 288"/12" + 1 ) = 25
SI: maximum( 10, 9000mm/250mm + 1 ) = 37
For the cantilever span the minimum number of stations controls the number of
stations, for the back-span the maximum spacing criteria controls the number of
stations.
The number of stations will have an effect on the force diagrams produced as
illustrated in figure below.

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Criteria

Rigid End
Zones

Whether or not to consider the effects of rigid end zones is declared in the Rigid End
Zone box. The engineer may choose to ignore these effects by clicking the Ignore Effects
option button. To include the effects, click the Include Effects option and either enter a
percent reduction (between 0 and 100%) in the edit box or accept the default value of
0%. The percentage provided reduces the rigid end zone from the full length (full
length is considered to be half the column dimension in the direction of the beam). See
the Chapter 3 for more information on Rigid End Zones.

Loading

The loading criteria directly relates to the number of load cases that are generated by
the program and applied to the analysis of each story. Note that the larger the number
of load cases the longer the analysis time.
Skip load the live load on beam line beams : Select this option to skip load the live
load on beams that have assigned beam line numbers. (See Section 2.6.3 for a
description of beam lines.) When selected, the program creates one load case per
unique live load type (storage, reducible, un-reducible and partition) per beam span.
Dead load and Roof live load are not skip-loaded. Also, for beam lines in the two way
regions only live loads applied directly to the beams is considered for skip loads.
Skip load the live load on non-beam line beams : Select this option to skip load the
live load on beams that do not have beam line numbers. This option can be selected to
obtain skip loaded concrete column forces where the concrete column supports beams
without beam line numbers. Selecting this option could increase the number of load
cases generated (and hence increase the analysis time).
Consider Live Load Reduction : Select this option to have the live load reduction
applied to the forces calculated from each span. The program calculates a live load
reduction factor for each live load type (roof, reducible and storage) on each member
(beam and column). Refer to the RAM Steel manual for a description of the different
load types (reducible, unreducible, storage, roof and partition).
The analysis is performed for each live load type independently (i.e. different load
cases) if this option is selected. This is to allow the program to reduce the resulting
member forces by its corresponding live load reduction value before combining. Where
no live load reduction is to be considered all live load types on a beam span can be
applied in a single load case for analysis, and no reduction is made to the resulting

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Criteria

forces. Refer to the technical chapter for details on how live load reduction is
calculated.
Consider Load Polygons as Load Cases on Two-way deck (for pattern loading) :
Select this option to skip-load the surface live loads on two-way regions. When
selected, the program creates one load case per unique live load type (storage,
reducible and un-reducible) per surface load polygon. Dead load and Roof live load are
not skip-loaded. Also, if there are any partition surface live loads they are treated
similar to un-reducible live load by the program and they show up in un-reducible live
load component.
Example
All loads are live loads and beam self wt (dead load) is also applied. The table below
shows the number of load cases that will be generated based on the user selected skip
load and live load reduction criteria.

Number of load cases generated (based on the user selected criteria)


Skip
load
beam
Lines

Consider
Live
Load
Reduct.

DLa

LLb roof

LL
reduce.

LL unred.

LL
Storage

Total

Yes

Yes

2c

No

Yes

1d

1d

1d

Yes

No

2e

No

No

1f

a. Never skip load dead load


b. Never skip load roof live loads
c. Both LL reducible loads applied in one load case per span
d. Each live load type is its own load case to allow for live load reduction to be
considered. (see Section 3.5 for more information on Design Forces)
e. All live load types applied in one load case per span as LL reduction is not being
considered
f. All live loads from all spans are in one load case as no skip loading or live load
reduction is being considered.

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Beam
Torsion
Stiffness

There are several references that indicate that concrete members will typically exhibit
significantly less torsional stiffness than might be calculated using the full cross
sectional properties (see Section 3.2.6 For more information on the references). In RAM
Concrete the torsional stiffness J is calculated based on the dimensions of the web of
the beam (not including flange overhangs).
The torsional stiffness of the beam can then be reduced on a beam-by-beam basis based
on the torsion cracked factor assigned to the member in the RAM Modeler OR the
engineer can select to reduce the torsion stiffness for all concrete beams by the
magnitude specified in this dialog. Note if using the value specified in this dialog the
gross member torsion stiffness will be multiplied by (1.0 - Specified reduction %) to
determine the final beam torsion stiffness. Note that for all other stiffness properties
(flexure and axial stiffness) the cracked factor assigned to the both beams and columns
in the Modeler are considered to reduce the associated stiffness value.

Design

Consider slenderness
(Option in ACI Only,
Always applies to
BS8110, CP 65)

Analysis
Constraints

Several options are available to the user to control finite element model that is created
in the RAM Concrete Gravity Analysis.

RAM Concrete Gravity Analysis

Per ACI318-02 ( 10.12, 10.13(.5) ), BS8110 3.8.3 column


forces must be increased where a slender column exists. By
selecting this option column slenderness will be checked
and where necessary column forces will be magnified. The
engineer should ensure that beams on slender columns
have sufficient capacity to resist the required increase in
end moments.

Pin base of
concrete gravity
columns

The analysis of each story (per ACI318-02 8.8.3, BS8110


3.2.1.2.1, AS 3600, EN 1992) fixes the ends of the concrete
columns above and below each story that is analyzed. However,
the user can choose to pin (release) the gravity concrete columns
where they are at the foundation. This option will result in less
rotational stiffness than would otherwise be calculated at the
joints above these columns.

Pin base of
column on
Transfer
Member

The engineer has the option of considering the base of a gravity


column as pinned (released) when it sits on transfer beam or
wall. Selecting this option will consider the gravity concrete
column pinned at its base in this situation.

Pin Top of
Concrete Gravity
Columns

A column that is continuous at its top that has gravity beams that
are pinned and supported on the column will induce bending
moments in the top of the column due to the eccentricity
between the beam end positions and the column centroid (refer
to the Technical Section for more information). To remove any
moment being induced in the top of the column the engineer can
select this option to pin the top of the gravity columns (for
bending). Note that if all the members framing into the column
are also released for flexure a situation of instability could arise.
At least one member must provide stiffness in each of the six
degrees of freedom to prevent an instability.

Remove Rigid
Diaphragm

The rigid diaphragm constraint is applied in a horizontal plane


even for a sloped floor. For members not located in the

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Criteria

Constraint on
Sloped Floors

horizontal plane of a floor the rigid diaphragm constraint may


introduce unrealistic bending moments and torsion forces. Note
that this behavior is not a program error but rather an inherent
finite element limitation of applying a horizontal rigid diaphragm
constraint to nodes not located in the plane of the diaphragm.
This option is provided to remove the horizontal rigid diaphragm
constraint on the floor for sloped diaphragms. When selected if
any node in a diaphragm (single slab edge) is not located at the
elevation of the story then none of the nodes in that diaphragm
will be constrained (slaved to a master node).

Ignore wall
stiffness above
story

This option may be selected to ignore the stiffness of the walls at


the level above. This selection will result in a more flexible
analysis.

Include Out-ofPlane Stiffness


for One-Way
Decks in Hybrid
Slabs

This option may be selected to include the out-of-plane stiffness


for one-way decks in hybrid slabs. The default selection is always
yes.

Speed

Save
Results for
display
purposes

Analytical
Model

Merge Node
Tolerance

This value is used to set a tolerance for merging close nodes after
the mesh is generated. Any two nodes closer than this specified
tolerance is assumed to be the same node and they are merged.

Mesh
Controls

Maximum
Distance
Allowed
between
Nodes

This option allows the user to define the maximum distance


between nodes in slab decks and walls. Note that the program may
generate some nodes closer than user entered value, but it is never
allowed to be larger than that.

Geometric
Tolerance

This value is used to set a tolerance for geometric calculations. This


tolerance is required while performing various geometric
computations prior to meshing i.e. finding if the point is inside a
polygon or point is same as another point etc.

RAM Concrete Gravity Analysis

An option is available in the RAM Concrete Analysis module to allow


the user to speed up the analysis if desired. By selecting Save results
for display purposes (the default) the program will save all display
results and will not experience any difference in speed or functionality
over previous versions. If unselected the program will not save display
results during the analysis. That is, the program will not save member
forces, reactions etc that were used to allow the user to view the
results of the analysis on the screen. The design forces are still saved
and all reports as well as the column and beam design modules will
function as before. However, there will be no on-screen display
available through the Process Results menu command. This option
should significantly increase the time to complete the analysis
particularly for structures with significant number of load cases.

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Criteria

Hard Node
Density Factor

Solver Type

Hanger
Column
Load
Iteration

This factor is used to determine mesh density around hard nodes


which are always located inside slab decks. A hard node is defined
as a node where a column, beam or a wall is attached. For most
cases, a value of 1.0 is a good estimate to obtain relatively good
mesh density around hard nodes.

Several types of solvers are offered in the program. Basically they are categorized in
two flavors: in-core and out-of-core solvers. With in-core solvers, the global building
stiffness matrix is assembled, stored and solved in the physical memory (RAM) of the
computer. As long as there is enough memory available for the solution of the models,
this choice always gives the best performance/solution time. However, for very large
models, the in-core solver might run into out-of-memory errors. If this is the case, it is
suggested to switch to out-of-core direct solver. With the out-of-core solver, the
program assembles stores and solves building stiffness matrix using files that are
stored on the hard-drive of the computer. Thus, it involves repeated access to the hard
drive, which may substantially increase analysis time. It is always recommended that
models should first be run with the in-core solvers and if an out-of-memory error is
detected, then the out-of-core should be used. Also, one should note that the results
remain unchanged whatever solver is used in the analysis.
Use In-Core
Direct Solver

User may select this option for a moderate size problem.

Use Out-of-Core
Direct Solver

While not a common occurrence should a large model experience


an out-out-of-memory error during analysis the engineer can
select this option to activate the use of the out-of-core solver. As
mentioned this solver will utilize the hard drive in its solution
process so while it may be a little slower it will be able to
effectively analyze larger structures.

Use In-Core
Sparse Solver

User may select this option for all types of problems. This is the
fastest solver in the library if the required RAM is available for
usage.

Use Out-of-Core
Sparse Solver

This solver provides another out of core option to be used when


the model runs out of memory. This solver is substantially faster
than the out-of-core direct solver.

Convergence Tolerance (% Change)


This convergence tolerance value is used to determine the termination of hanging
column load iteration. The load iteration is performed to achieve convergence in the
load coming through hanging column from level below to the level above. The smaller
this tolerance gets the program may take more number of iterations to converge. The
default value of this tolerance is set to 5%.

2.5.3 Column Forces


RAM Concept column forces can be integrated into the concrete gravity analysis but only for levels
which are not affected by hangers. The interaction between RAM Structural System and RAM Concrete

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Criteria
occurs through the RAM Model. To track the current state of the forces and the interaction between the
programs select the Criteria-Column Forces command to display the Column Design Forces dialog.
Please note that the levels which are affected by hanger column forces are not shown in the dialog box.
To use RAM Concrete Gravity Analysis column forces (ignore any RAM Concept forces) select the Use
RAM Concrete Analysis Forces at all levels. If RAM Concept forces are available to be used the user can
select the Use RAM Concept Analysis Forces at Selected Levels.
The columns of the table provide the following information:
Use : Select the stories for which Concept forces are to be used. Note that only stories with a green or
yellow status (see description of status below and in technical notes) can be selected.
Story : The RAM Structural System story.
Source Story : This represents the story that was originally read by RAM Concept and whose analysis
results were exported to this story. RAM Concept can export member forces into any story that is of the
same layout type as the story it originally imported. For example if 2nd and 3rd story in the RAM
Structural model use floor type A, then Concept can read the data from story 2nd, analyze the floor and
provide forces back to both stories 2nd and 3rd in the Structural System (even though no data was ever
imported from story 3rd into Concept).
Read : This represents the time that RAM Concept last imported the major information (geometry) from
this story.
Saved : This represents the time that RAM Concept last exported member forces for this story.
Concept File : The name and path of the Concept file that was used to produce the forces sent back to
the RAM Structural System.
Status : Indicates the current state (synchronicity) between the RAM Structural System model and the
RAM Concept model. Only stories whose status is Current (green) or Not Current (yellow) can be
selected to have their forces integrated with RAM Structural System. Stories that have a state of Not
Available (red) cannot be selected. If the use RAM Concept force is selected, clicking on any of the status
dots will report the reason for the current state. Refer to the RAM Concept Column and Wall Force
Integration Chapter for more detailed information.

2.5.4 Sidesway
Selecting the Criteria -Sidesway command will cause the Column Sidesway dialog box to appear. This
dialog box is used to specify globally (for the entire structure) if the columns are braced or unbraced
against sidesway (sway or non-sway columns). The third option, "partially braced", refers to the case
where a structure is braced against sidesway in only one direction e.g., a moment frame in the xdirection and a shear wall in the y-direction. An example of a partially braced setting is provided below.
Note that this criterion is not utilized unless the user has selected to consider column slenderness in the
Criteria-Analysis dialog box (see Section 2.5.2). The side sway affects the column slenderness
calculation determining if the column is a sway (unbraced)) column (ACI 10.13, BS8110 3.8.1.6.1,
EN1992 5.8.3.2 (3)) or a non-sway (braced) column (ACI 10.12, BS8110 3.8.1.6.1, AS3600 10.1.3.1,
EN1992 5.8.3.2 (3)).
Clicking OK will save the Sidesway setting. Modifying the Sidesway criteria after an analysis or code
check has been performed will invalidate the results of that analysis and/or code check.
Clicking Cancel will close the dialog without changing the Sidesway criteria.

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Criteria
The engineer can also assign sidesway on a member-by-member basis, overriding the global criteria,
using the Assign-Column-Sidesway command.
Example Partially Braced Columns
A "partially braced" structure is one that is braced against sidesway in only one direction.
To consider ONLY the columns in the Global X OR Global Y directions as being braced against sidesway:
Select the Partially Braced option button.
Check Global X +/- check box OR the Global Y +/- check box.
Accept "0" as the number of degrees in the Degrees box.
To include frame columns which are rotated off the Global X OR Global Y axes as being braced against
sidesway:
1. Select the Partially Braced option button.
Check Global X +/- check box OR the Global Y +/- check box.
Enter the appropriate angle in the Degrees box. NOTE: The degrees angle refers to the angle between
the global axis indicated and the lateral member's local major-axis.
For example: To consider Column A (see Figure below) to be braced against sidesway in its major axis,
and B in its minor axis:
1. Select Partially Braced
2. Check Global X +/3. Enter 20 in the Degrees box.

B
A

20

Notice that the 20 degrees refers to the angle between the global axis and the local major or minor axes
of the columns. This will result in Column A being braced against sidesway in the major axis and Column
B in the minor axis.

2.5.5 Effective Length


Selecting the Criteria - Effective Length command will cause the Column Effective Length dialog box to
appear. Note that this criterion is not utilized for ACI unless the user has selected to consider column
slenderness in the Criteria-Analysis dialog box (see Section 2.5.2). The Effective Length affects the
column slenderness calculation in accordance with ACI318-02, BS8110 3.8.1.6.1.and AS 3600 10.5.3.

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Per ACI 10.13.1 The Effective Length Factor for sway frames will be limited to a value larger than or
equal to 1.0 when the nomograph is selected in the Effective Length Factor Criteria Dialog Box. Cracked
section properties as defined by the user in the RAM Modeler are considered when calculating member
stiffness for the purpose of calculation of effective length (k) factors using the nomograph approach.
The Effective Length Factor can be indicated in one of two ways: entering specific values for the major
axis and minor axis or allowing the program to choose these values. To enter Major or Minor axis values
for columns, click the Use button and then enter values in the edit boxes. To have the program calculate
the Effective Length Factors based on the Nomograph Values, click the Use Nomograph Values button.
Effective Length Factor can also be set in a column by column basis by selecting Assign-Column
Effective Length Factor command. If Use Nomograph (ACI) or Use Sec 2.5:BS8110:Part2 (BS8110) is
selected, the effective length will be calculated based on the nomographs of 10.12.3 (ACI), the same
formulas are used for the AS3600 design, or equations of BS8110:Part2:1985 Section 2.5 (BS8110)
depending on if the column is sway or non-sway in the axis being calculated.
Clicking OK will save the settings. Modifying this criterion after an analysis or code check has been
performed will invalidate the results of that analysis and/or code check.

2.5.6 Bracing
Selecting the Criteria - Bracing command will cause the Column Bracing Criteria dialog box to appear,
with the current default settings shown.
The bracing of a column in a particular direction affects the analytical model that is created. The dialog
is used to set criteria by which the program will calculate the stories at which the columns are braced in
each axis by beams and/or the slab. An option is provided for the slab to automatically brace the
column. When selected, the column will be considered braced if it falls within the slab at a particular
level.
Additionally, beams framing into columns may cause the columns to be braced. The maximum angle (0 90 degrees) for which a beam braces a column may be specified in the edit box provided. If the angle
between a given column axis and the beam exceeds the value specified, the beam does not provide
bracing to that column in the axis specified.
Refer to Section 3.2.2 of this manual for more information on the affect of column bracing on the
boundary conditions of the finite element model.
This criterion is used to determine the bracing for all concrete columns. Steel and other columns are
braced according to the bracing criteria for steel members specified in the RAM Steel Column Mode.
Refer to the RAM Steel Column Mode for more information.
To change the bracing criteria, click on the desired bracing options and/or enter a new maximum angle
in the edit box. Clicking the Cancel button will cancel any changes made. To accept the changes, click the
OK button.

2.6 Assign
The assign commands are for overriding the global criteria. Most assign commands can be issued in
Single, Fence or All mode.

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When a command is issued in Single mode, the arrow cursor turns into a target cursor for the selection
of the desired member. In Fence mode, the arrow cursor turns into the rectangle cursor that allows the
selection of multiple members at a time. In All mode, the cursor remains the arrow cursor but the
assignment is made to all members.

2.6.1 Assign Column


Column
Size

Using the Assign Column Size, sizes can be assigned to any concrete column. The size
list in the dialog box displays the column sections available for assignment to columns.
Concrete column sections are defined in the RAM Modeler. Clicking on a section in the list
box selects it for assignment. Clicking the Single, Fence or All buttons closes the dialog box
in the selection mode as described above. The status bar displays a prompt that tells the
user what needs to be done to make the size assignment.

Sidesway

Selecting the Assign-Column-Sidesway menu command causes the Sidesway dialog box to
be displayed. From this dialog box the engineer can override on a member-by-member
basis (concrete only) the global sidesway criteria specified under Criteria-Sidesway (see
Section 2.5.4). This criterion is not utilized unless the user has selected to consider
column slenderness in the Criteria-Analysis dialog box (see Section 2.5.2).
The sidesway affects the column slenderness calculation by determining if the column is a
sway (braced) column (ACI 10.13, BS8110:Part2:1985:Sec2.5, AS3600 10.5./10.1.3.1) or a
non-sway (unbraced) column (ACI 10.12, BS8110:Part2:Sec2.5, AS3600 10.5). Select the
appropriate sidesway criteria for each local axis of the member (or specify that the global
criteria are to be used for that axis).
After the appropriate values are specified the engineer can assign the criteria to a single
concrete member (click on Single), to multiple members (click on Fence) or to all concrete
members (click on All). If Single is selected the dialog box will close and a target cursor
will be made available. Click on each member to which the criteria should be applied. If
Fence is selected the dialog box will close and a fence cursor will be made available. Click
and drag a rectangle around all the members to which the criteria should be applied. Note
that the criteria are only assigned to concrete members. To return to the dialog box to
select a different sidesway criteria click the right mouse button.
To view which member axes are using the global criteria and which have been overridden
select the appropriate option from the View-Members Dialog box.

Effective
Length
Factor

Selecting the Assign-Effective Length Factor menu command causes the Assign Effective
Length dialog box to be displayed. From this dialog box the engineer can override, on a
member-by-member basis (concrete only), the global effective length factors specified in
the Criteria- Effective Length dialog box. This criterion is not utilized unless the user has
selected to consider column slenderness in the Criteria-Analysis dialog box.
Select the appropriate values from the dialog box (see Section 2.5.5 for more information
on the various options). The engineer can choose to override the global criteria in one or
both axes of the member. The criteria are applied to the columns local axes.
After the appropriate values are specified the engineer can assign the criteria to a single
member (click on Single), to multiple members (click on Fence) or to all members (click
on All). If Single is selected the dialog box will close and a target cursor will be made
available. Click on each member to which the criteria should be applied. If Fence is

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selected the dialog box will close and a fence cursor will be made available. Click and drag
a rectangle around all the members to which the criteria should be applied. Note that the
criteria are only assigned to concrete columns. To return to the dialog box to select a
different effective length criteria click on the right mouse button.
To view which member axes are using the global criteria and which have been overridden
select the appropriate option from the View-Members Dialog box.

2.6.2 Assign Beam


Beam

Using the Assign Beam Size, sizes can be assigned to any concrete beam. The size list in
the dialog box displays the concrete sections available for assignment to beams. Concrete
beam sections are defined in the RAM Modeler. Clicking on a section in the list box selects it
for assignment. Clicking the Single, Fence or All buttons closes the dialog box in the
selection mode as described above. The status bar displays a prompt that tells the user
what needs to be done to make the size assignment.

Gravity
Beam
Fixity

Gravity concrete and material type Other beams can be manually assigned fixity for
consideration in the finite element analysis in RAM Concrete. In RAM Concrete Analysis
mode the user can assign beam fixity conditions to the gravity concrete beams by selecting
the Assign Beam Fixity menu command. Gravity, concrete beam fixities can also be
assigned along with the beam line number in the Assign Beam Line Manual or
Automatic menu command as previously described in the Assign Beam Lines Section.

Note: Beam end fixity impacts the beam design envelope but does not directly impact the reinforcement
layout. The reinforcement is designed without regard to beam end fixity.

2.6.3 Assign Beam Lines


Automatic Selecting the Assign-Beam Lines-Automatic command causes the Assign Beam Lines
dialog box to display. This dialog box allows the user to establish criteria by which the
program will automatically assign beam lines to all concrete beams on all stories.
Beam lines and beam line numbering are a fundamental concept utilized throughout the
program. Only concrete beams with assigned beam line numbers can be designed in RAM
Concrete Beam. Beam lines can also be assigned and modified manually using the AssignBeam Lines-Manual command.
Note that the gravity beam fixities can be assigned to the gravity concrete beams at the
same time the beam line numbers are assigned or manually at any later time. Select the
appropriate assignment of fixity from the Assign Beam Line Dialog.
Include Beams with Variance Angle Less Than : The angle specified in this edit box
defines the maximum angle, between two contiguous beams, for them both to be assigned
the same beam line number. Any angle larger than this and the beams will be assigned
different beam line numbers.

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Beam offset to accept as continuous : This distance defines the offset that can exist
between two continuous beams for them to be assigned the same beam line number. The
beams in this case need not be truly continuous as some offset exists between the ends of
each, but they will be designed as one continuous beam.
Example
The beam line numbers shown below will be generated for the indicated criteria.
Criteria:
Include Beams with Variance Angle Less Than 40 Degrees
Beam Offset to accept as continuous = 3 inches

Note that the beams offset 3 inches are assigned the same beam line number, but not
those offset 6 inches. Also the beams that are within 40 degrees of each other are assigned
the same beam line number.
Manual

Selecting the Assign-Beam Lines-Manual command causes the Select Plan dialog box to
display. (If the model is already shown in plan view, then the Select Plan dialog will not be
shown.) The selected story will then be displayed and the Assign Beam Lines Manual
dialog will open. This dialog box allows the user to create new beam lines or modify
existing beam lines.
Beam lines and beam line numbering are a fundamental concept utilized throughout the
program. Only concrete beams with assigned beam line numbers can be designed in RAM
Concrete Beam.
There are rules associated with assigning and deleting beam line numbers to and from
beams. If any of these rules are violated the program will issue a detailed description and
prevent the action. For example, only beams that are continuous (or within a small offset)
can be assigned the same beam line number. If the engineer tries to assign or delete a
beam line number that will result in this rule being violated, the program will issue a
warning and not perform the selected action.
When assigning or removing beams from a beam line the program can automatically
assign end releases or fixity to the selected gravity, concrete beams. To have the program
automatically assign beam fixities the 'Automatically Assign Beam Fixities' checkbox must
be selected. Select between 'Fix all beams' and 'Release All Beams' to have the program Fix
or Release, respectively, the ends of the subsequently selected gravity, concrete beams.
Fixed beams will be considered continuous in the analysis. Pinned beams will be
considered released for bending at each end but will remain fixed for torsion.

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Add new beam line : By selecting this option and clicking Single or Fence the dialog box
will close and the cursor will change to the target or fence cursor respectively. Select the
member/s to which a new beam line number will be assigned. Note that the beam line
number that is assigned is automatically determined to be the next available beam line
number for that story. To assign the next higher beam line number, right click the mouse
(to redisplay the Assign Beam Line Number Manual window) and choose the mode (Single
or Fence) in which to assign the next beam line numbers. The beam line number to be
assigned is automatically incremented each time the window is displayed.
Note the order in which members are assigned to a beam line is important. The beams
must be selected in a continuous row so none of the beam line rules are violated.
Add beams to beam line number : To add additional beams to an existing beam line
select this option and choose an existing beam line number from the drop down list. By
clicking Single or Fence the dialog box will close and the cursor will change to the target
or fence cursor respectively. Select the member/s to which a new beam line number will
be assigned. Note that the beams assigned the selected beam line number must be
continuous with an existing beam of the same beam line number.
Remove from beam line : To remove one or more beams from a beam line, select this
option. Click Single or Fence to close the dialog box and be presented with a target or
fence cursor. Select the member/s to be removed from a beam line. Beams can only be
removed from the ends of a beam line to prevent the creation of a discontinuous beam
line. Only beams specifically selected will be removed from beam lines.
Remove all beams in beam line : Select this option to remove the beam line number from
all the beams in any beam line that is selected. Click Single or Fence to close the window
and be presented with a target or fence cursor. Select the beam/s with beam line numbers
to remove from the model. The beam line number will be removed from all beams that
have the same beam line number as the selected beam.

2.7 Process
2.7.1 Analyze
The Process - Analyze command invokes the generation of finite element models for each story, the
calculation of loads, and the analysis and computation of column and beam design forces. For each story
the process is broken into three phases, namely: preprocessing, analysis and post-processing. During
the pre and post-processing of each story, a status log will be displayed. Intermittently another progress
dialog will appear which indicates that the actual finite element analysis is being performed.
Once all stories are analyzed (successfully or unsuccessfully) the user can scroll through the progress
log for a summary of each story's analysis. In case of models which have hanging columns the story
analysis data will be present repeatedly. The repetitions are performed only on the levels which are
affected by hanging column forces. The repetitions are equal to the number of times the iteration is
performed to achieve the convergence in hanging column forces. Select Close to hide the log dialog box.
Following an analysis the menu commands under the Process-Results menu will be available.

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To stop the analysis before it is completed, press the Cancel button on the status log dialog.

2.7.2 Results - FE Model Information


Following an analysis the user can select Process > Results > FE Model Info to display the finite
element model that is created for each story of the analysis. Refer to the Technical Notes Chapter for
information regarding the Finite Element model created for each story.
Each story in the structure is analyzed independently. The user can use this dialog box to view the
model that was analyzed on each story. If the analysis reported an error, it will report a member
number, node number or a coordinate. The user can use this dialog box to view the story that was being
analyzed when the error occurred, so that the location of the error might be observed and action taken
to correct the problem.
Note that the display options selected here are only visible on the screen while this dialog box is
displayed. The dialog box can be moved and the screen printed or manipulated (zoom etc) while this
window is displayed.
Click Apply to have the selected options display on the screen.
Story

Select the Story for which to display the Finite Element Model that was analyzed. When the
Apply button is clicked, only the members that were part of the analysis of this story will be
displayed.

FE
Nodes

The physical model created in the RAM Modeler is automatically converted to create a finite
element model for the analysis. At each location that a member is intersected by any other
members it is given a node. By selecting this option all the nodes for the selected story's FE
Model will be displayed. Note that there may be many nodes displayed interior to slab
decks and walls. These nodes represent the locations at which the slab deck and wall has
been meshed. A size slider is provided to change the size of the nodes during the display of
the finite element model.
Node
Numbers

Select this option to display the node numbers assigned for the analysis.
Many of the error messages that may be issued during the analysis refer
to the nodes by number.

Node
Restraints

After a successful analysis of a story the node restraints can be displayed


by selecting the option to Show Restraints. This will display one of the
following two symbols at the restrained nodes.

When the longitudinal axis is horizontal, this symbol indicates that the
node is restrained against translation in the direction of the longitudinal
axis and restrained for bending in the same direction (about a horizontal

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axis perpendicular to the longitudinal axis). When the axis is vertical, the
symbol indicates restrained against translation in the direction of the
longitudinal axis and restrained for bending in the direction around this
axis (preventing twisting of columns around their own axis).

The longitudinal axis of the restraint illustrated above is always


horizontal and indicates that the node is restrained against translation in
the direction of the longitudinal axis. This restraint is typically applied to
the support nodes of walls at the levels above and below the story being
analyzed.
In general a vertical support is provided to each column and wall directly
under the story being analyzed. This node is also restrained for torsion
around the vertical axis (columns cannot twist). In addition, translational
and rotational restraints are provided to the column stack (above and
below the story) where they are braced. Refer to the Criteria-Bracing
Section 2.5.6 and Model Boundary Conditions in the Technical Notes
Chapter for information on how column bracing is determined.
Mesh

Select this option to display the finite element mesh of the selected story. A quadrilateral
element mesh is automatically generated using the criteria specified in the mesh controls.
The mesh is always generated for the story at which there are any two way slab-decks. The
slab deck mesh is not generated for stories which have only one way slab deck. A slab-deck
may have one or more openings defined in the layout. The meshing procedure considers
columns as point constraints, beams and walls (above and below) as line constraints and
hence always a conformal mesh is generated.

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Beam
Fixity

Select this option to display the fixities that are assigned to each physical member for the
analysis. The fixities assigned may differ from those observed using the View-Members
window as they are modified according to the following:
Gravity beams in general are all considered released (pinned) about the major and minor
axis at each end, but fixed for torsion. Gravity concrete and other beam fixity can be
modified in this module or the RAM Modeler. Frame beams all utilize the fixity they were
assigned by the user in the RAM Modeler or RAM Frame. If instability occurs at nodes of
frame members their fixity may need to be modified in the RAM Modeler or RAM Frame.
The display convention for beam fixity is 0 = released and X = fixed. The order the fixities
are displayed in the following figure:

Column
Fixity

Select this option to display the fixities that are assigned to each physical column for the
analysis. The fixities assigned may differ from those observed using the View-Members
window as they are modified according to the following:
Gravity columns are assumed continuous above and below the story being analyzed.
However, the gravity (non-concrete) columns above the story are assumed pinned
(released) at the level of the story being analyzed. Concrete gravity columns are continuous
through the story being analyzed. The user can choose to release the base of gravity
columns where they frame into the foundation (refer to the Criteria-Analysis Section 2.5.2).
Frame columns all utilize the fixity they were assigned by the user in RAM Modeler or RAM
Frame.

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The display convention for column fixity is 0 = released and X = fixed. The order the fixities
are displayed in the following figure:

2.7.3 Results - Vertical Reactions


Following a successful analysis of one or more stories the user can select Process > Results > Vertical
Reactions to display the Vertical Reactions of each story's analysis. These results can be used to
independently verify the results of the analysis for each story's analysis. Note that reaction forces at
each story are reversed and applied as loads to the supporting story for the next stories. Only significant
reactions (larger than some small magnitude) are shown for each load case. Reactions are scaled
relative to each other but the scaling is not exact.
The display options selected here are only visible on the screen while this dialog box is displayed. The
dialog box can be moved and the screen printed and model manipulated (zoom etc) while this window
is displayed.
Click Apply to have the current selections displayed on the screen
Story

Select the Story for which to display the reactions from the analysis. When a story is selected,
all of the analyzed load cases for that story will be available for selection in the Load Case
drop-down. When the user clicks Apply, only the members that were part of the analysis of
this story will be displayed

Load
Case

Select the load case for which to view reactions. Refer to the Analysis Criteria (see Section
2.5.2) for more information on how load cases are generated. Click Apply to have the load
case reactions displayed on the screen. The beams or surface load polygons (in the two-way
deck region) that are loaded in the selected load case are highlighted. If no beams are
highlighted then the selected load case is one in which the columns are loaded (loads from
story above or user applied column point loads).
Load Cases are labeled according to their type (Dead Load = DL, Live Load Reducible = LLred,
Live Load Unreducible and Partition = LLunred, Live Load Storage = LLstor, and live load roof
= LLroof). Where there are multiple load cases of one type, (LLred1, LLred2 etc) they
represent all the different load cases in which loads of that particular type (live load
reducible) was applied.

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2.7.4 Results - Member Forces


Following a successful analysis of one or more stories the user can select Process > Results > Member
Forces to display the Member Forces and Beam/Column force diagram from each story's analysis.
These results can be used to independently verify the results of the analysis and duplicate the calculated
beam and column design forces. Forces and diagrams are only displayed on members that have
significant forces for the selected load case. Click Apply to have the current selections displayed on the
screen.
The display options selected here are only visible on the screen while this dialog box is displayed. The
dialog box can be moved and the screen printed and model manipulated (zoom etc) while this window
is displayed.
Click Apply to have the current selections displayed on the screen.
Story

Select the Story for which to display member forces from the analysis. When a story is
selected all the analyzed load cases for that story will be available for selection in the
Load Case drop-down. When the user selects Apply, only the members of the structure
that were part of the analysis of this story will be displayed

Load Case

Select the load case for which to display member forces. Refer to the Analysis Criteria
(see Section 2.5.2) for more information on how load cases are generated. Click Apply
to have the member forces displayed on the screen for the current load case. The
beams that are loaded in the selected load case are highlighted. If no beams are
highlighted then the selected load case is one in which only the columns are loaded
(loads from story above or user applied column point loads).
Load Cases are labeled according to their type (Dead Load = DL, Live Load Reducible =
LLred, Live Load Unreducible and Partition = LLunred, Live Load Storage = LLstor, and
live load roof = LLroof). Where there are multiple load cases of one type, (LLred1,
LLred2 etc) they represent all the different load cases in which loads of that particular
type (live load reducible) was applied.

Beam Forces

Select this option to display beam forces on the screen for the currently selected story
and load case. Forces are displayed along the length of the beam according to the Sign
Convention (see Section 3.4.2). Beams will always be oriented from the lower to the
higher numbered node (Node I is the lower node number on the beam span). All
forces are displayed at the face of the beams (i.e. not at center-line) except for beams
continuous over girders in which case a knife-edge support is assumed for the beams.
Select the Show At Quarter Points option to display the forces at beam ends, and three
points along the span. The distance to quarter and mid-span force is calculated based
on the centerline span length. Select the type of force (Moment, Shear, or Torsion) to
display. Click Apply to have the selection displayed on the screen. Note that forces will
only be displayed on beams that have significant force (above some small limit) for the
selected load case and story.
Beam forces for live load cases display the unreduced live load forces. These forces are
reduced according to the members Live Load Reduction Factor (see Section 3.3.9)
when determining a beams design forces. The Beam Line Force Envelope Report (see
Section 5.7) is based on the reduced live load forces.

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A Note on
Beam
Deflections:

The computation of beam gravity deflections is performed during the analysis. Dead
and Live Load deflections are calculated at 20 stations along beams with associated
beam. No deflection data is computed or available for non-beam line beams. The
selection of skip-loading and live load reduction in the Analysis - Criteria menu has a
significant effect on the computed deflections as described in the technical section. No
additional user input is necessary. The deflection values are not available from the
screen only from the Reports Menu.

Column
Forces

Select this option to display column forces on the screen for the currently selected
story and load case. Forces are displayed at each end of the column in accordance with
the Sign Convention (see Section 3.4.2). Columns are oriented from top to bottom
(upper node to the lower node). All forces are displayed at the face of the columns
where they are continuous. Select the type of force (Moment, Shear or Torsion) to
display. Click Apply to have the selection displayed on the screen. Note that forces will
only be displayed on columns that have significant (above some small limit) force for
the selected load case and story.
Column forces for live load cases display the unreduced live load forces. These forces
are reduced according to the member's Live Load Reduction Factor (see Section 3.3.9)
when determining a column's design forces. The Column Forces report (see Section
5.9) is based on the reduced live load forces.

Wall Forces

Select this option to display column forces on the screen for the currently selected
story and load case. From this dialog, select the wall force (Shear, Moment or Axial) to
display for the currently selected story and load case. Walls are meshed prior to
analysis but the wall forces reported are the cumulative resultant of all the finite
elements in the physical wall. This is true even for wall with openings that exist
through the entire height or width of a physical wall, essentially breaking it into two
or more physical walls. All live load forces are unreduced.
Reported forces for wall members include axial force, major axis shear and major axis
bending moment (overturning moment). The figure below shows the positive
direction of wall member forces.

Show Force
Diagram

RAM Concrete Gravity Analysis

Select this option to display force diagram on the screen for the currently selected
story, load case and members. Forces are displayed only for beams and columns along
their length according to the sign convention (see Section 3.4.2).

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Process
Scale Factor

Scale factor value is used to scale the member force diagram on the screen. The scale
factor number is only used for representation. One may also specify a negative value
of scale factor to show the diagram on the tension face of beams and columns.

2.7.5 Results - Displacements


Following a successful analysis of one or more stories, the user can select Process > Results >
Displacements to display the global displaced shape and displacement contours from each story's
analysis. Click Apply to have the current selections displayed on the screen.
The display options selected here are only visible on the screen while this dialog box is displayed. The
dialog box can be moved and the screen printed and model manipulated (zoom etc) while this window
is displayed.
Story

Select the Story for which to display the displaced shape from the analysis. When a
story is selected all the analyzed load cases for that story will be available for
selection in the Load Case drop-down. When the user selects Apply, only the
meshed elements of the structure that were part of the analysis of this story will
be displayed.

Load Case

Select the load case for which to display the nodal displacements. The load case in
the drop down menu are the applied loads in the modeler and does not contain
any skip loading cases. Click Apply to have the nodal displacements displayed on
the screen for the current load case. Load Cases are labeled according to their type
(Dead Load = DL, Live Load Reducible = LLred, Live Load Unreducible and
Partition = LLunred, Live Load Storage = LLstor, and live load roof = LLroof).

Show
Displacement
Contour

Select this option to see the global displacement contours on the meshed elements
(two-way floor slab elements). A color palette shown at the bottom shows
different colors used in the displacement contour display (see description below
for more info).

Show Displaced
Shape

Select this option to view the displaced shape of the story.

Animate

Select this option to animate the displaced shape of the story.

Show Mesh

Select this option to view the finite element mesh.

Scale Factor

This scale factor is provided to scale the displacements in the generated view.

Transparency
Slider

This transparency slider is provided to control the transparency of the


displacement contours.

Color Palette
Legend

A color palette shows the range of colors associated with showing deflection
contours of different magnitudes on the screen (see Show Displacement
Contours above). The palette is centered on zero deflection (dark green) with
negative (downward) displacement values extending to color red and upward,
positive values to dark blue. The maximum displacement value for the selected
story and load type is indicated on the ends of the slider in the unit indicated in
the dialog title (mm or in). The engineer can also adjust the range of colors
associated with the deflection values by clicking and dragging the slider (small
triangle) located at each end of the color palette. As the slider is dragged the

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Reports
displacement value will show on the slider. Using this control an engineer can
establish a displacement limit, drag the triangle slider to that limit, and the
program will color all elements with displacement larger than the limit in the
extreme color (red or blue).

2.8 Reports
2.8.1 Report Destination
The first four options under the Reports menu are used to control the destination of the selected report.
A check mark is placed beside the current selection. This selection is relevant to the current model in
RAM Concrete Analysis only. To change the report destination on a global level, use the Tools Report
Styles command located in RAM Manager.

2.8.2 Reports
Various reports are available in the Gravity Analysis mode. These reports are used to gain information
about the model and its analysis. For more information about the individual reports, see Chapter 5.
Various reports are available in the Gravity Analysis mode. These reports are used to gain information
about the model and its analysis. For more information about the individual reports, see Chapter 5.
Some of the reports can be generated on a member-by-member basis using a single or fence action. To
generate a specific report for a single member select the Specific Report-Single command (where
available on the menu), and click on a member. To generate reports a specific report for multiple
members select the Specific Report-Fence command and fence the members.

2.9 View
2.9.1 Gravity Loads
The View-Gravity Loads command is used to display the member gravity loads that are automatically
calculated by the program. This is only presented for loads applied on one way decks. (Refer to the RAM
Manager for more information about member self weight). Select View-Gravity Loads to display the
View-Gravity loads dialog box.

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View
Select one of the load types shown in the dialog box and click Apply to have the selected gravity loads
displayed on the screen. Note that only those load types defined in the RAM Modeler are displayed in
this list. If a load type is defined in the RAM Modeler but not assigned to the model, selecting that load
type will not display any member loads. It may be preferable to be in low resolution (see ViewResolution menu command in the 3D Viewer manual) or in elevation view when observing applied
loads on large structures.

2.9.2 Beam Lines


The View-Beam Lines command is used to display the beam lines on a selected story. Select the dialog
box displayed below appears when the command is invoked. See Assigning Beam Lines (Section 2.6.3)
for more information on beam line numbers. Select options from the dialog box and click Apply to
display the selected options on the screen. Close will hide the dialog box, select View-Reset Model to
remove the beam line numbers and highlighted members that are displayed on the screen.
Story

From the story list, select the story for which to display beam line numbers. When
selected, the list of beam line numbers will be updated to show all the beam line
numbers currently assigned on the selected story.

Select Beam
Line Numbers

Select one or more beam line numbers from the list of beam line numbers.
Depending on the selection, the beams with the selected beam line numbers will be
highlighted and/or numbered, when Apply is selected. By clicking Select All
(Unselect All), all the beam line numbers in the list will be selected (unselected).

Show Beam
Line Numbers

Select this option to display the beam line number on each beam that is assigned a
beam line number equal to the numbers selected in the list.

Highlight Beam Select this option to highlighted each beam that is assigned a beam line number
Lines
equal to the numbers selected in the list.

2.9.3 Beam Line Numbers (only on the toolbar)


Select this toolbar button to toggle all the beam line numbers, on all beams in the structure, on and off.
Refer to the analysis toolbar description (see Section 2.3.2) for the location of this toolbar button.

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Exiting RAM Concrete Analysis

2.9.4 Model Colors / Design Colors toggle


Image

Description
A 'Model Colors' / 'Design Colors' toggle button and associated menu items have
been added to the RAM Concrete modules. Both the RAM Concrete Column and
RAM Concrete Beam modules change the display colors of the members to reflect
their current design status. Clicking the 'Change to Model Colors' button, or
selecting 'Colors - Model Colors' from the 'View' menu will switch display colors
back to the default colors assigned for each type. This can make it easier to
identify the specific type of member by its color.

While the Model Colors/Design Colors button appears on the toolbar, it will not change the color of
the members. This is because no design results are available in analysis mode.
Image

Description
After clicking the 'Change to Model Colors' button, the button graphic will toggle
to the 'Change to Design Colors' button. Clicking this button or selecting 'Colors Design Colors' from the 'View' menu will toggle the color display back to 'design'
colors.

The graphic displayed on the button reflects the current model display colors, which are the opposite of
the mode that will be toggled to by clicking the button.

2.10 Exiting RAM Concrete Analysis


The Mode menu or drop-down combo box on the toolbar can be used to exit the Concrete Gravity
Analysis mode and navigate to another RAM Concrete mode.
The File Close command is used to exit RAM Concrete. Issuing File Close will return the user to the
RAM Manager.

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Technical Notes

Within the RAM Concrete Gravity Analysis mode the beam and column gravity forces are generated.
There are several steps to the computation of gravity design forces from the original building model.
First the full structural model is broken into multiple finite element models, one for each story in the
structure. Each finite element model is then loaded with the appropriate gravity loads in specific load
cases, and analyzed. Following the analysis, beam and column forces are computed and combined per
the code to produce the most accurate gravity design forces. Also during the analysis the beam local
deflections are calculated along with associated member forces necessary for checking the short and
long-term deflection.
The gravity member forces are used in load combinations in the Concrete Beam and Concrete Column
modes to produce the final design forces. The deflection information is used in the RAM Concrete Beam
program to calculate the appropriate dead, live, long term and net deflection magnitudes and perform
the deflection checks. This technical section describes the details and assumptions made by the program
in generating these beam and column gravity forces and deflections.

3.1 Concrete Design Code


The analysis and computation of design forces in the RAM Concrete Gravity Analysis mode are based on
the requirements of the following concrete codes:
ACI 318 99/02 "Building Code Requirements for Structural Concrete" (ACI 318-99 & ACI 318-02) and
Commentary, 2002, American Concrete Institute, Farmington Hills, MI
This code is hereafter referred to as ACI318-02 or simply ACI.
BS 8110-1:1997 "Structural use of concrete - Part 1: Code of practice for design and construction",
Incorporating Amendments 1, 2 & 3.
This code is hereafter referred to as BS8110.
CP 65-1:1996 "Code of practice for structural use of concrete - Part 1: Design and construction"
This code is hereafter referred to as CP 65. When not explicitly mentioned in a section of this document
a reference to BS8110 will apply to CP 65.
AS 3600-2001 "Concrete Structures". This code is hereafter referred to as AS 3600.
GB 50010 is the concrete design code for China.

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3.2 Analytical Model


The program performs an elastic finite element analysis as stipulated by ACI Section 8.3.1 for a single
story at a time as permitted by ACI Section 8.9.1 and BS8110 3.2.1. This section of the manual describes
the generation and details of the analytical model used in analysis of each story.

3.2.1 Geometry
A finite element model for each story is generated from a subset of the members in the full model. The
finite element model of a single story is thus comprised of:
All the slab decks defined as two way,
Slab decks from one way region but only if they occur with two way slab deck within a slab edge
loop,
All the beams on the story,
All the walls in the model that are located within one story above or below the current story,
All the columns up to the levels at which they are braced above and below the current story.
Note that RAM Concrete Gravity Analysis does not currently consider braces in the gravity finite
element model that is created for any story. The presence of braces is considered in RAM Frame, and
hence their affect is considered when determining forces on concrete members due to lateral loads. The
gravity forces calculated in this mode are combined with the lateral forces in each of the Concrete Beam
and Concrete Column Design Modes.

3.2.2 Model Boundary Conditions


As indicated above, the finite element model for each story extends approximately one story above and
below the current level. For walls this is always true and the program will provide a translational
restraint at the top and bottom of the walls above and below the current story respectively.
For columns, the program provides restraints for each axis where it is braced at the story above or
below the story being analyzed. To determine the levels at which a column is braced above or below a
particular story the program uses the criteria specified by the user in the Criteria-Bracing dialog box
(see Section 2.5.6). A column is also assumed braced at a level if the orientation or the material type
changes from one level to the next.
Where a column is braced it will be assigned a rotational and translational boundary restraint per
ACI318-02 Section 8.8.3, BS8110 3.2.1. That is, where an axis of a column is braced it is assigned a
translational restraint in the direction of the column axis, and a rotational restraint that will prohibit
rotation of the column in the plane of the restraint. Internally the program provides fixity in the
appropriate node local axes and rotates the node to align with the column orientation. The illustration
below indicates the column axis that is restrained at the level above the story being analyzed, where a
beam braces the column in axis 2. As noted a translational restraint will be provided in the direction of
axis 2 and a rotational restraint will prevent rotation about axis 3.

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The program also provides a vertical restraint under all walls and columns at the story below the
current story being analyzed. The hanging columns however are restrained at the story above. The
columns (and walls) are also restrained to prevent rotation about their own vertical axis at these levels.
This restraint is provided irrespective of the story at which the column is braced against laterally.
Following the analysis the user can view the location that the program applied rotational and
translational restraints by viewing the Finite element Model for a particular story (see Section 2.7.2)
For gravity non-concrete columns the program will also assume the columns are restrained against
translation and rotation above and below the story, (the bottom of the column above the story being
analyzed will be pinned against bending). Gravity non-concrete columns extend to the story (above or
below the story being analyzed) at which they are braced in each axis.

3.2.3 Member Fixity Conditions


For lateral members the assigned fixity of beam and columns are used in the analysis. If a structural
instability occurs during the analysis, due to the fixity conditions of one or more lateral members, the
user will need to modify the member's fixity in either RAM Modeler or in RAM Frame.
All non-concrete gravity beams by default are assumed to be pinned (released) for bending about both
axes at each end, and fixed against torsional rotation to avoid instabilities in the finite element model.
Gravity beams of material type Other and type Concrete can be assigned fixities in the RAM Modeler.
Gravity Concrete beams can also be assigned fixity from the Assign-Beams-Fixity command in the
Concrete Analysis Program.
For concrete gravity beams, fixity can be assigned along with the beam line number on the member (as
in gravity concrete beams with an assigned beam line number can be made continuous (fixed at their
ends)). Beam line numbers can be assigned and cleared from members as described in Section 2.6.3.
All non-concrete columns are assumed to be fixed at both ends, except for the column located directly
above the story, whose lower end is pinned. While gravity columns may be thought of as being pinned,

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providing the fixity described should not affect the final results as gravity members framing into the
columns will be pinned and not transfer any moments into the column (note however a beam pinned to
a column is assumed to be supported at the face of a column and will produce a moment in the column
equal to the beam reaction times distance from face of column to the column centroid. Providing the
fixity also avoids instability issues, which currently cannot be corrected directly by the user.
The user can however explicitly designate the top of a concrete gravity column to be pinned for bending
by selecting the Pin top of gravity concrete column option from the Analysis Criteria dialog available
from the Criteria-Analysis command. Similarly the bottom of a gravity concrete column can be pinned
when supported by a transfer member by selecting the Pin bottom of column on transfer member
command in the same Analysis Criteria dialog box. The user also has the option of pinning concrete
gravity columns for bending about both axes at the foundation. See Analysis Criteria in Section 2.5.2 for
how to set these options.

3.2.4 Models with Hanging Columns


The hanging column when present on a story requires restraints to be applied in opposite location
compared to regular columns. Currently, the program always provides a vertical restraint under all
standard columns modeled at the story being analyzed (see section 3.2.2). This is required as these
columns provide a support in the vertical direction. A hanging column modeled at the story also
provides support but extends upwards so a vertical restraint is provided at its physical top which is
above the current story. So this way any standard column reaction gets applied to the level below but a
hanging column reaction gets applied to the level above. As Concrete analysis solves the problem top to
bottom, to apply the reaction to the level above requires analysis of story above again hence resulting in
iteration. The iterations will only stop when the difference in the load in the hanging column is within
the specified tolerance (Criteria-Analysis) of the previous iteration. This condition is checked for all
the load cases. The applications of member fixities follow the same rule as for regular columns. A couple
of things to note when program is performing iteration over hanger stories:
1. It will never skip load the live load on the beam line beams
2. It will never skip load the live load on the non-beam line beams
3. It will never skip load the surface live load polygons on the two-way deck
If any of the skip-loading options (1), (2) and (3) are selected then the program would do an extra
iteration to perform the skip loading in the end. This ensures a lesser solution time. To further expedite
the analysis program also saves finite element model information to temporary files for levels
associated with hanging columns. These temporary files will be deleted at the completion of the
analysis. The results file for each hanger story analysis will be created and saved only once in the final
iteration. The iteration will also be reflected in the analysis log dialog where the hanger story and other
information will keep showing up as usual but repeatedly during iterations. The iterations will only be
performed between the hanger levels. The program automatically groups hanger levels in a building
model. So for example, if a model has 10 stories and first 4 have hanging columns and last 2 have
hanging columns then the program will only perform iteration on top 2 and bottom 4 stories. The rest in
between are solved only once.

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3.2.5 Models with Offset Beams and Columns


Offset beams and columns are modeled in the program with rigid links at their offset ends. This is
depicted in figure below where rigid links are shown in orange color. Beams can be modeled offset to
columns, other beams and walls at the same level. Similarly, columns can be modeled offset to beams,
columns and walls at level below. The offset columns on columns are always treated to be in one single
stack. In the finite element model these links are modeled as rigid beams with a property modifier of
1000 relative to the member it is attached. The link element details are internal to the program and
cannot be controlled from outside. Although, the links are made visible to the user in the plan and 3d
view, they cannot be view-updated for member forces and other results.

3.2.6 Material Properties


Concrete
The user can specify concrete compressive strength (f'c), weight, density and modulus of elasticity when
assigning concrete members (refer to the RAM Modeler manual). The engineer can also select the option
to have RAM Concrete calculate the member's modulus of elasticity. Where this option is selected the
concrete modulus is calculated according to the following equations:

ACI 318-02
Assumes the concrete weight is between 90 pcf and 150 pcf:
Ec = wc1.533 f

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where
=
=

f'c
wc

compressive strength in psi


concrete density in pcf

BS8110
Ec = 20 + 0.2 f cu

BS8110:Part2: 1985:7.2

where
=
=

fcu
concrete
weight

compressive strength in N/mm2


less than 2,146 kg/m3 it is adjusted for light weight concrete
by multiplying by

C
2
2, 400

AS3600

Ec = ( )1.5 0.043 f cm
where
=
=

fcm

AS 3600 6.1.2 (a)

the density of the concrete in kg/m3


the mean value of the compressive strength of the concrete

EN1992

( )

Ecm = 22

(Clause 3.1.3 (2))

f cm 0.3
22

where
fcm

fck + 8 (MPa)

Steel
All steel members, including joists and Smart Beams, are assigned a modulus of elasticity value of
29,000.0 ksi (200,000 N/mm2), a Poisson ratio of 0.3 and a density of 490.0 pcf (7,850 kg/m3).

Other
For members of type Other, the user is responsible for the specification of material properties in the
RAM Modeler. Refer to the RAM Modeler manual for more information on creating members of type
Other and specifying their material properties.

3.2.7 Section Properties


This section describes how the various member section properties are calculated. The actual section
properties used in the analysis can be viewed in the Member Analysis Properties Report as described in
the report section.

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Concrete
Concrete column section properties are calculated from the cross-section dimensions of the member.
The calculated moments of inertia values are multiplied by the user specified cracked section factors to
determine the final inertias used in the program.
Concrete wall section properties will be calculated from the user assigned wall thicknesses. The walls
thickness for in-plane and out-of plane stiffness (but not axial) will be modified by the cracked section
factor assigned to the member.
Beam section properties are also calculated from the cross section dimensions of the section. Some or all
of a beam's cross sectional dimensions are provided by the user. However, the user can select an option
to have the program calculate the flange dimensions for T beam (see RAM Modeler manual). Where this
option is selected the dimensions are calculated as follows:
If the beam is under a two-way slab the effective flange width will not consider the distance to the
adjacent beam but revert to a flange width of span length / 6, otherwise the rules below will apply.

ACI
ACI 8.10.2 Beams
with slab on both
sides:

Flange width < Span Length / 4


(a) Flange Overhang < 8 x Slab Thickness
(b) Flange Overhang < Clear distance to next web / 2.
RAM Concrete currently considers half the distance between beam centerlines
when limiting flange overhang per 8.10.2 (b).

ACI 8.10.3 Beams


with slab on one
side:

(a) Flange overhang < Span Length / 12


(b) Flange Overhang < 6 x Slab Thickness
(c) Flange Overhang < Clear distance to next web / 2.
RAM Concrete currently considers half the distance between beam's centerlines
when limiting flange overhang per 8.10.3 (c).

BS8110
BS8110 3.4.1.5 Effective
Width of T Beam:

Flange Overhang = lz / 5

BS8110 3.4.1.5 Effective


Width of L Beam:

Flange Overhang = lz / 10
Where lz is the clear length of the beam.
For user specified T Beam Sections, RAM Concrete does not check if the
dimensions are within the code specified limits of 8.10.1, 8.10.3 or 8.10.4
or BS8110 3.4.1.5.

AS3600
According to
AS 3600
Clause 8.8.2:

RAM Concrete Gravity Analysis

Effective Width of T-Beam, bef = bw + 0.2a


Effective Width of L-Beam, bef = bw + 0.1a where

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bw

the distance between points of zero


moment, which in continuous beams is
taken as 0.7 times the beam length
the web width

EN1992
According to EN 1992 The beam's calculated moment of inertia about its major and minor axes, and
Clause 5.3.2.1
axial stiffness, are both multiplied by the user specified cracked section factor
to determine the properties used in the analysis.
Note: Where a T beam is located within a two-way slab the program does not ignore the beam flange
contribution when calculating the properties of the beam to include in the stiffness contribution to the
meshed floor. In this respect the program is double-counting the slab area of the beam flange in twoway slabs. The major impact of this double area is the unrealistic increase in the axial stiffness of the
floor. As the floors are primarily subject to bending and shear forces this stiffening may not be
significant however if necessary the engineer can provide a rectangular beam reflective of the beam web
when modeling beams in two-way slabs.

Concrete Beam Torsional Stiffness


The torsional stiffness (constant) for concrete beams is based on the members calculated Torsional
Moment Of Inertia, J. For T beam and Pan Joist sections, the flange overhang are not considered in the
calculation of J, as it is assumed they will crack and be ineffective at providing significant additional
torsion capacity to the beam. The torsional moment of inertia is calculated as:

( 13 0.21 bc )

J = cb 3
where
b
c

=
=

Smaller dimension of beam web


Larger dimension of beam web

The calculated concrete torsional moment of inertia (constant) J can be is multiplied by the torsional
constant reduction factor (1.0 - Torsional Reduction %) specified in the Analysis Criteria dialog, or by
the member specific torsional cracked section factor (see Section 2.5.2).
Several of the references presented below indicate that the torsional stiffness of concrete members is
significantly less than that calculated using the full gross section properties. The references also indicate
that the concrete structure will behave based on the reinforcing provided, and if torsion stiffness is
assumed to be small the analysis will redistribute the forces and the engineer will design for these
redistributed forces. In essence the structure will behave the way it was assumed in the analysis.
For cases where torsion ensures equilibrium (i.e. no redistribution is possible) then forces cannot be
redistributed and the beam section will need to be reinforced to ensure that the calculated torsion force
can be resisted without excessive deformation.
The following references provide some insight into an appropriate concrete torsional stiffness reduction
value.
In reference 4, the authors indicate for most situations the assumption of zero torsional stiffness can
be made. They do indicate that it is still important to provide, at minimum, torsion reinforcing to
prevent excessive service load cracking.

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In reference 5, the author indicates that while flexural stiffness decreases maybe 50 percent from
cracking, torsional stiffness drops down to 5 or 10 percent its uncracked value. The author also
mentions that the consideration of the torque to be used in the design is very complex due to the
cracking effect. Thus it is always better to neglect the rigidity of the members for torsion and to
consider them fully cracked.
In reference 6 the authors mention that the structure will behave exactly in the same way as it was
idealized in the analysis (cracked or uncracked). They suggest modeling the reinforced concrete
structures with a very low torsional rigidity i.e. assume it is significantly cracked.

Steel
For steel beam and column sections the actual cross sectional properties will be used in the analysis. As
RAM Concrete is performing an elastic finite element analysis of the entire structure (in order to
determine the concrete member forces), the user is required to provide section sizes for any steel
members in the model.

Other
For members of type Other the user specified section properties are used directly in the analysis.
Joists and Smart Beam members will be assigned nominal cross sectional properties irrespective of their
assigned size. As these two member types are always pinned at their ends in the analysis the assigned
section properties will have minimal impact on the final concrete design forces elsewhere in the
structure.

3.3 Gravity Loads


The RAM Concrete program automatically calculates the gravity loads that are to be applied to the
structure from the user applied surface, line and point loads, as well as from self-weight if desired. Each
story is analyzed independently for the gravity loads and the reactions from each stories analysis are
applied as loads for the analysis of the story below. This section describes details of how the gravity
loads are calculated and applied in the analysis.

3.3.1 Load Properties


One of the key features of the RAM Structural System is the ability to automatically determine the loads
to each individual member based on user defined surface, line, and point loads. In the RAM Modeler,
loads are defined by first creating a list of load properties and then assigning these load properties to
the layout with the use of polygons, lines, and points as appropriate. A load property consists of a Label,
a Dead Load, a Construction Dead Load, a Live Load with its associated Live Load Reduction flag, a
Construction Live Load, and a Mass Dead Load.
A note regarding terminology: Repeated reference is made throughout the program and the
documentation to "Live Loads". In some codes these loads are referred to as "Imposed Loads".

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The Dead Load is the total dead load such as lab, deck, partitions, miscellaneous, etc. Member and slab
self-weights can be included in this value automatically. See Section 3.3.2 for more information on SelfWeight Calculations.
The Construction Dead Load, or Precomposite Dead Load, is particular to composite steel members and
is not considered in RAM Concrete.
The Live Load is the total live load appropriate for the particular building based on the applicable
Building Code and use of the building. Live Loads may be defined as Reducible, Storage, Unreducible,
Roof or Partition. Roof loads may be treated as Reducible or Unreducible. Partition loads are always
treated as unreducible and combined with them. Live Load Reduction is discussed in Section 3.3.8.
The Construction Live Load is particular to composite steel members and is not considered in RAM
Concrete.
The Mass Dead Load is the load that will be used in calculating the diaphragm mass properties in RAM
Frame and is not considered in the RAM Concrete Gravity Analysis Mode.
Snow loads, including varying drifting snow loads can also be applied. A current limitation in the
program is that Roof Live Loads and Snow Loads cannot be considered simultaneously. Both types of
loads can exist simultaneously in the model, but only one or the other will be considered. In the Criteria
Live Load Reduction command in the RAM Manager there are two options: Consider Snow Loads,
Ignore Roof Live Loads and Consider Roof Live Loads, Ignore Snow Loads. This is used to specify
which set of loads is to be considered. If both types of load need to be considered, it may be necessary to
design the members twice, once with each option selected. Note that this limitation is only between
Snow and Roof Live loads; Snow and Reducible, Storage, Unreducible or Partition Live loads can be
considered simultaneously by the program.
Surface load properties are assigned to the model by defining the boundaries of the load polygon.
Virtually any number of load polygons may be assigned to a given layout. Additionally, overlapping
polygons are permitted. The last polygon assignment will override all previous assignments rather than
be additive.
Polygon boundaries need not coincide with beam locations; boundaries can fall within a bay. Such
changes in loads will result in multiple uniform or trapezoidal loads generated on the beam as can be
verified on screen using the View-Gravity Loads command (see Section 2.9.1) or in the Beam Gravity
Loads Report. Care should be taken in the RAM Modeler when laying down load polygons, especially
those whose sides should coincide with a beam line, so that extraneous minuscule loads are not
generated on the beam.

3.3.2 Self-Weight Calculations


Self-weight of columns, beams, walls and slabs/decks can be automatically included in the loads by
selecting the Criteria Self-Weight command in the RAM Manager. If the options are not selected, the
self-weights are not included, even if values are specified in the Modeler.
Self-weight of Steel Joists is not automatically included. In order for the design to consider the selfweight for these members, it must be applied by the user as part of the surface load or as a series of
separate line loads. This is necessary because only the self-weight of Standard steel joists is known
(although even that can vary with the actual span). The actual self-weight of Girders and Special joists is
not known. So for consistency, no self-weight is automatically considered for any Steel Joists.
Self-weight of Braces is not automatically included.

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For walls with openings, the wall self-weight and wall mass are not reduced to account for the opening.
The openings are not considered when calculating wall self-weight and wall mass.
When the top of a wall slopes, the wall self-weight is applied as a trapezoidal load rather than a uniform
load, based on the wall thickness, unit weight and height of the wall at each end.
For columns, the calculated self-weight is applied as a point load at the top of the column.
The self-weight of Concrete columns and beams is calculated using the value of Unit Weight for SelfWeight, specified by the user in the Modeler. This value of Unit Weight is separate from the value
specified for Unit Weight used in the calculation of material properties (e.g., modulus of elasticity).
Note that self-weights are based on the center-to-center of supports and floor-to-floor heights of beams
and columns respectively. This means that there is a duplication of self-weight at the joints. The
program does not make any attempt to reduce this.

3.3.3 Effects of Sloping Framing


Beams
In the Modeler, Live Load Surface and Line loads that are applied to sloping framing areas should be
assigned magnitudes equivalent to their projected area loads (for Surface loads) and projected length
loads (for Line loads); Live Loads specified in most building codes are already specified as projected
area loads, so no modification is necessary. Dead Loads should be input as the actual loads, based on the
actual weights; the program will account for the effects of sloping. The figure below shows how beam
Live Loads are dealt with in the RAM Structural System. Figure (A) shows the load as applied by the
user. The load is then transformed to calculate the load per unit length along the member, as shown in
Figure (C). The load is transformed again to calculate both the perpendicular and axial components
along the member, as shown in Figure (C). In RAM Concrete both the perpendicular and axial
components are considered in the analysis.

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(A)
w cos

(B)
w cos2
w cos sin

(C)
Columns

Columns too can be sloped in the Modeler. For a sloped column, the column self weight for the column
length will be applied as a unit point load to the top of the column, and no externally applied loads are
considered acting along the length of the column. Note that only moments at the ends of the column are
considered in the design module and columns with large(r) moment that occur along the length of a
member should be designed outside of this application.
Important: If a multi-story column is kinked (bent) along its unbraced length this member will not be
able to be designed in RAM Concrete column. The analysis is performed on a story-by-story basis with
vertical support provided at the story below the one being analyzed. As such only vertical loads
(reactions), and not moments, are transferred level to level through the columns. Also as columns are
designed based on end moments of the unbraced length any mid-span moments were they to exist
would not be considered.

3.3.4 Effects of One Way Slab Deck Orientation


Floor loads in the one way slab deck regions are distributed based on the orientation of the deck. Loads
within a bay will be distributed in the direction of the slab to the several members surrounding the bay.
For example, no surface load would be applied to a beam that is parallel to the slab span (except as a
point load from a beam framing into it). In calculating the distribution of the loads, it is assumed that the
slab-deck performs as a single simple span between beams within the bay; no continuity of the slab over
multiple spans is considered.

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Typically a one-way deck is not considered in the analysis in RAM Concrete other than to determine
what nodes are to be slaved to what diaphragm. However, if there is a combination of one-way and twoway slabs on the same floor then the entire floor will be meshed. The loads that are applied to the oneway deck will be distributed in RAM Gravity and be applied as line and point loads on the supporting
members in RAM Concrete Analysis. This is unlike in the two-way areas described below, where the
load is actually applied to the floor slab mesh itself. As no load is applied to the one-way mesh and as the
loads on the one-way deck are already distributed to supporting members the one-way deck itself is
given nominal (small) out of plane bending properties.

3.3.5 Loads on Two-way Slab Deck


The applied gravity loads in the two-way slab deck region are distributed on a quadrilateral floor mesh.
The surface, line or point load applied on each quadrilateral mesh is then resolved to obtain the
equivalent nodal loads on the nodes of meshed floor. The analysis considers the stiffness of slab-deck,
beams, columns and walls on that floor as calculated by the program using the properties specified in
the modeler.

3.3.6 Loads on Slab Edges


The slab edge loads are only calculated for the beams/walls which do not have any two-way deck on the
slab edge side. The beams/walls which have two-way deck on their slab edge side get the slab edge
loads based on two-way load distribution on that side. For slab edges which do not contain any two-way
deck (i.e., the area of slab between beam centerline and edge of overhanging slab), loads are carried
back to the beam as if the deck is perpendicular to the beam, regardless of the actual deck orientation.
When laying down polygons to define surface loads it is important to lay them down such that they
include the slab edge rather than end at beam centerline. If the area between the beam and the edge
does not fall inside of a load polygon, no load will be applied. It is permissible to assign a different load
to the slab edge than to the opposite bay.
Slab edge lines can be laid out either parallel to neighboring beams, or they can be defined in a freeform. The program carries out a few automated steps to figure out slab edge load polygons, and then
computes projected loads within slab-edge load polygons. The projected loads are applied on beams. It
should be mentioned that the current implementation works on purely geometric properties of slab
edges and neighboring beams even though projecting loads onto beams should involve a more
elaborated stiffness based analysis approach. Instead, a simplified approach is applied, which leads to
acceptable results for most typical configurations. In the following subsections, the current
implementation is briefly described and some limitations identified.

Procedure Detail
A minimum of two closed polygons are first calculated by the program: a beam-loop polygon and slabedge polygon (these are indicated in the following figure (A) with red and green lines, respectively).
Note that the beam-loop polygon might be composed of beams, joists, or walls. Then the area between
the slap-edge and beam-loop polygons is partitioned into load polygons, which are used to distribute
loads on slab edges (in the following figure (B) ). These load polygons are generated in such a way that
any angle between two beams (or walls) is bisected outward. Finally, any loads (point, line or surface
loads) detected on load polygons are projected back onto beams.

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(A)

(B)

Figure 1: (A) Slab-edge and beam-loop polygons are shown in green and red colors, respectively; (B)
Generated slab edge load polygons
It is important to know that there must be at least one closed loop with beams (including joist and
walls), and one closed loop with slab edges. Otherwise, the program cannot construct load polygons and
cannot process loads on slab edges. For some ambiguous configurations, generated load polygons may
not be acceptable (to verify loads on edge beams it is recommended that the user check the distributed
loads found on beams in the RAM Steel Beam module). An example of such a configuration is given in
the following figure; the beams form a concave loop but the slab edge doesn't extend into that area.
Thus it is ambiguous as to how the slab edge load and the load within the concave area should be
distributed back to the beams. In cases like this it is suggested that the slab edge be placed to more
explicitly to identify the intent, or that surface loads be removed from these areas and line loads
manually applied to the neighboring members.

Figure 2: Improper load polygon example


Loads (point, line or surface loads) found inside or on these generated slab edge load polygons are
projected back to beams (or walls). One-way distribution of loads is assumed, with the slab edge loads
carried back to the beam at right angles to the beam. Therefore, loads in the exterior corner of a slab will
be ignored since there is no beam to distribute the load back to at a right angle to the beam. For
example, the highlighted portion of the surface load in the following figure is ignored:

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Figure 3: Loads located within shaded area are ignored.

3.3.7 Openings and Penetrations


If the opening edges are created as the slab overhang then the loads on slab edges around openings
(created in the RAM Modeler with the Layout-Slab-Openings command) are treated as described in
Section 3.3.6. No load is applied to the area within the opening, even if it falls within a load polygon.
User may also create a free form opening in a one way deck inside a beam loop. A free form opening is
the one which may take any shape inside a beam loop as shown in the Figure below. Multiple openings
inside a beam loop and the openings with their edges crossing the beams are considered invalid
configuration for calculation of opening slab edge loads. Ram Gravity throws an error in the end for any
such configuration it runs into while framing. The beams in the beam loop associated with the opening
causing an error will not have correct loads applied on them.

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Figure 4: Free Form Openings


The calculation of opening slab edge load for each beam in the loop is not trivial due to the fact that an
opening can have practically any shape. The calculation of opening slab edge load for each beam
requires identifying the polygons, the loads on which are carried back to the beam. An opening slab edge
load polygon for any beam is obtained by finding the nearest point on the opening from the beam nodes
(beam nodes lying on the beam loop). These nearest points on the opening and the beam nodes are then
used to form one or more closed polygons. More than one load polygons are formed for a beam if the
opening edge or corner sits on the beam itself. If there are multiple points found on the openings which
are equidistant from the beam nodes then the mid-point of the extreme points found on the opening is
considered as the nearest point. This mid-point considered also lies on the opening.
Once the slab edge polygons are obtained for each beam in the beam loop, the loads on each polygon is
carried back to the associated beam as if the polygon deck is laid perpendicular to beam. Thus, the deck
orientation within these polygons has no influence on the load distribution. However, there may be
some portion in the opening slab edge polygon the load on which doesn't get carried back to the beam.
The Figure below shows opening slab edge load polygon for a few selected beams from beam loops
shown in the Figure above.

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Figure 5: Opening Slab Edge Load Polygons


Penetrations (openings created in the RAM Modeler with the Layout-Slab-Penetrations command)
have no effect on loads. The program ignores their presence when calculating member loads. Their
purpose is to limit the effective flange width of concrete T Beam and Pan Joist Sections for analysis and
design purposes.

3.3.8 Live Load Reduction


Each of the Building Codes has provisions for reducing the live loads under certain conditions. When
appropriate, the program automatically calculates these reduction factors and reduces the loads
accordingly. On the output, these reduction factors are listed as a percent of allowable reduction. For
example, if the output lists a reduction of 60%, the unreduced load is multiplied by 0.40 to obtain the
reduced load. The program recognizes four types of live loads: Reducible, Storage, Unreducible, and
Roof. The Roof load may be treated as either Reducible or Snow, as specified by the user in the RAM
Manager criteria.

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Live load reduction factors are a function of the area associated with the loads acting on a member. In
calculating the reduction for a given load, the program only uses the area on the member associated
with that live load type. For example, if part of the load on a member is Reducible and part is Storage,
only the area associated with the Reducible loads will be included in the calculation of the reduction
factor on the Reducible loads, and only the area associated with the Storage loads will be included in the
calculation of the reduction factor, if permitted, on the Storage loads.
In some Building Codes, the Live Load Reduction is a function of the number of stories carried by a
member or is dependent on whether the load is coming from a single level or from more than one level.
The user can specify which load types are to be considered in this determination, for the purpose of
calculating Live Load Reduction. For example the user can specify that a level carrying Roof Live Load
not be included when determining the number of levels that a member supports (this does not mean
that the Roof loads are not applied). These options appear in the Determining Number of Stories
group box in the Criteria > Live Load Reduction command in the RAM Manager.
Roof Live Loads specified in the International Building Code (IBC), Uniform building Code (UBC),
Standard Building Code (SBC), and the BOCA National Building Code (BOCA) are reducible in some cases
based on the tributary area and the slope of the roof. The RAM Structural System automatically
considers both parameters when calculating the Roof Live Load Reduction. When the Roof loads are
specified by the user, the magnitude of the load should be that given as the basic Roof Live Load value,
not the reduced value to account for slope or area. For example, in the UBC, SBC and BOCA the Roof Live
Load charts list 20 psf as the basic roof load for tributary areas less than 200 square feet and slopes less
than 1:3. This is the value that should be specified by the user even if the roof is sloped. The program
will calculate the slope and the tributary area and use the corresponding table value. If a value other
than 20 psf is specified by the user, the program will use the same Live Load Reduction percentage as
calculated for a 20 psf load, but will apply it to the specified value. Columns and girders may be
supporting members that support various areas of differing roof slope. In that case the program uses a
weighted average slope in the calculation of the Roof Live Load Reduction factor.
The user may limit the live load reduction on beams by specifying a Use Calculated Value, limited to a
Maximum ofwith the Layout > Beams > LL Reduction command in the RAM Modeler. The limit is
assigned on a beam-by-beam basis. For example, the user can specify that for purlins the live loads not
be reduced, but for girders the live loads get the full allowable reduction. If a limitation is assigned using
this command, the program will use the more stringent of the code required value and the user specified
value. With this same command the user may also assign an explicit value to use, which will override the
calculated value. These assignments have no impact on the design of the beams.
The user may limit the live load reduction on columns by specifying a Use Calculated Value, limited to
a Maximum of with the Layout > Columns > LL Reduction command in the RAM Modeler. The limit is
assigned on a column-by-column basis. If a limitation is assigned using this command, the program will
use the more stringent of the code required value and the user specified value. With this same command
the user may also assign an explicit value to use, which will override the calculated value. These
assignments have no impact on the design of the beams.
The requirements for live load reduction are different for each Building Code. Particulars on the various
live load reduction code implementations can be found in the RAM Steel Beam, RAM Steel Column, or
RAM Frame manuals (or in the manuals available from the Help menu in each module).

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3.3.9 Live Load Reduction in RAM Concrete


In RAM Concrete, the Live Loads are applied to the entire structure, and then the resulting member
forces are reduced based on the Live Load Reduction factor for each individual member. The resulting
reducible, storage, unreducible and partition load case results are combined into a single Live Load case.
For SBC and UBC this requires calculating an equivalent Live Load Reduction factor for each member
using a weighted average, since the Live Load Reduction factor can vary from load to load under those
Codes.
For beams with cantilevers, the Live Load Reduction factor calculated for the span is also assigned to the
cantilevers.
The portion of the live load acting on a member that is delivered from two-way slabs is not included in
the reducible area for the live load reduction calculation. However, the user may directly assign a live
load reduction factor to a member in RAM Modeler, which will then override the value automatically
calculated by Concrete Analysis.

3.3.10 Skip Loading

Slap Span

The commentary to ACI Section 8.9 stipulates The engineer is expected to establish the most
demanding set of design forces by investigating the effects of live load placed in various critical
patterns. RAM Concrete has implemented the most comprehensive skip loading scheme to ensure that
the critical skip loading condition is considered so as to produce the most demanding beam and column
design forces. The engineer has the option in the Analysis Criteria Dialog Box (see Section 2.5.2) to
consider skip loading for live loads. Where specified the program will automatically create individual
live load cases for each span and surface load polygons in the two-way slab regions that is loaded by a
live load (as illustrated in the Figure below).

Load Case 1

Load Case 2

Load Case 3

Load Case 4

Load Case 5

Load Case 6

(A)

(B)

Figure 6: A) Model with uniform live load and B) Generated Load Cases by skip loading
A beam with a cantilever at its end will be considered as a two span beam for the determination of live
load cases. Loads from levels above the current story, which are applied to the columns of the structure,

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are all applied in a single load case. That is, axial loads applied directly onto columns are not skiploaded. An example of the number of live load cases generated for two spans with and without live load
reduction is given in Section 2.5.2. As described in the design force Section 3.5.2, the affect of each
individual live load case is then considered when determining the worst beam force at each station on
each beam, and for each column axis.

3.4 Analysis
The finite element analysis in RAM Concrete utilizes an advanced finite element analysis component.
This component includes many of the features found in RAM Frame in addition to many unique features
required for the concrete analysis. This section explains the capabilities and conventions of the analysis.
Important analytical assumptions and pertinent details are explained. The user is referred to the RAM
Frame Analysis Technical manual for the topics that are not covered in this section.

3.4.1 Global Coordinate System


The global system is the same as that defined in RAM Frame. Global X and Y-axis are defined in the plane
of floors and Z-axis is perpendicular to this plane (vertical axis).

3.4.2 Local Coordinate System


The sign convention used in RAM Concrete is identical to that used in RAM Frame. The Figure below
shows the local coordinate system and sign convention of beam and columns. It should be noted that
beams are defined from the left to right and bottom to top (when viewing the floor in plan), and
columns are oriented from top to bottom.

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Figure 7: Element local coordinate system and sign convention

3.4.3 Element Formulations


Column and Beam Frame Element Formulation
A frame element is a typical 1D finite element with six degrees of freedom (DOF) at each end: three
translational and three rotational degrees of freedom. As in RAM Frame, shear deformations are
incorporated into element stiffness matrix. The element formulation is based on linear theory where
only axial forces, moments and torsions are considered and second order effects and coupling between
these element forces are not accounted for. Refer to the RAM Frame manual for specifics on the matrix
formulation that is implemented.
For unsymmetrical cross sections, it is assumed that loads are applied through shear center of the crosssection. For unsymmetrical T -sections and L sections, it is further assumed that the members are
continuously supported along their lengths so as to prevent twist. For beams cast monolithically with
the slab this is a justified assumption.

Wall Element Formulation


A four-node finite element for modeling walls is used in RAM Concrete. The element consists of six
degrees of freedom at each of the four nodes: three translational and three rotational.
The wall stiffness matrix includes out-of-plane bending stiffness, which is not considered in RAM Frame.
Previously, a finite number (in the order of 10-6) is introduced into the formulation to prevent any
numerical singularity for out-of-plane bending. However, in this current formulation, a robust
calculation for out-of-plane bending is considered.
The membrane stiffness for in-plane bending is calculated in a similar way to RAM Frame. However, it is
augmented with drilling degrees of freedom. (The current formulation is similar to the developments
given in References 1-3 in Section 3.7). This new approach differs from previous wall formulation used

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in RAM Frame in which internally a rigid beam is introduced into the formulation to provide moment
continuity in the major direction (see the RAM Frame manual).
Loads are applied along the edges of walls, which are handled in a similar way in frame elements: they
are resolved into their perpendicular and axial components.

Slab Deck Element Formulation


Two-way slab decks are meshed and represented using shell finite element for analysis. The
implemented element is a quadrilateral shell element and it has a total of six degrees of freedom at its
each node: three translational, two bending and one drilling. The formulation for element stiffness
matrix includes membrane stiffness and plate bending stiffness. These stiffness matrices are calculated
separately and then combined to form element stiffness matrix for the shell element (see the RAM
Frame manual for further details).
The membrane stiffness accommodates three degrees of freedom at each node, namely two in-plane
translational and one drilling degrees of freedom. The formulation utilizes Allman type shape functions
within Hughes-Brezzi variational formulation framework. It includes correction matrix to remove any
existing membrane locking from element behavior. Also, another correction matrix is applied to
calculated stiffness matrix in case of warped planes of shell (Ibrahimbegovic, at. al., 1990; Taylor, 1987;
and Long at. al., 2004).
The plate bending stiffness is derived based on thin plate assumption and it is a typical Discrete Kirchoff
Element (shear deformations over the thickness of the element ignored). The formulation includes three
degrees of freedom at each node: remaining two rotational degrees of freedom and one translational
degrees of freedom, perpendicular to the plane of the shell.
Unlike beam, brace and column elements whose stiffness coefficients are integrated exactly, the shell
finite element gives results that are "exact" or close to the theoretical solution only if a finer mesh is
used and convergence achieved. For most practical purposes, the use of only a few slab deck element in
a floor may significantly underestimate deflections. In some cases, it could also give wrong results. RAM
Concrete automatically meshes two-way slab deck and one-way slab decks if included in a slab edge
loop with two-way slab deck.

3.4.4 Wall Openings and Meshing


With the introduction of wall openings the RAM Concrete analysis now performs a meshing of all walls
(with or without openings). The mesh is automatically generated without user interaction and the
nodes of the meshed wall are visible in the Finite Element Model when displayed on the screen (refer to
Process Results FE Model command). Refer to the RAM Frame manual for specifics on the mesh
component and technical information.
For walls with openings that extend to one of the edges the following ramifications will be observed.

Columns at edge of walls with Openings at edge


At locations where a wall opening intersects a column at the edge of a wall the column will be broken
into two finite elements at each point of opening intersection or wall mesh (see illustration below where
nodes 112 and 113 break the column into three finite elements.

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Figure 8:
Where this occurs the axial and torsion force used in the columns design will be based on the lowest
finite element in the physical column (between nodes 111 and 112).

Openings through the top of walls


In the case where an opening extends through the top of a wall, the user should be aware that any load
that would normally be applied to the top of the wall will be ignored through the area of the opening.
Note that in the RAM Structural system self weight is applied as a line load to the top of the wall so in
that case the self weight over the width of the opening will be ignored. Following such an analysis, a
warning is displayed:
Warning! Some load was not successfully applied to a member.
Load is ignored in openings at the top of walls if they exist
The levels and walls at which load has been ignored will be listed in the log/progress dialog which is
displayed during and following an analysis.

Openings through the bottom of walls


Nodes located each side of an opening will be assigned boundary conditions similar to those assigned to
the ends of the wall. In the figure , node 103 is displayed with vertical and translational fixity as it is
located adjacent to an opening. The reaction from these restrained nodes is then applied to the model
for the analysis of the story below, and the reactions at these nodes can be displayed from the Process Results - Reactions command following a successful analysis.

3.4.5 Two-way Slab Deck


RAM Concrete always meshes a slab when it is designated two-way, whether it is the only type on the
floor or if other one-way decks also exist on the floor. In RAM Concrete the mesh generation of a slab

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deck includes all the gravity and lateral members sitting on, or supported by, the slab and hence mesh
generated is always conformal with the attached elements.
Openings are also considered during the mesh generation if any exist. The mesh is generated for every
deck laid on the floor type and hence there is no mesh element sharing between two different deck
types. The mesh is considered continuous between any two decks. The thickness and elasticity
properties used for various elements in the different slab-decks are set by the user in the modeler.
There are no constraints applied to the slab deck mesh for the two-way analysis and hence an almost
exact analysis is performed using the assigned properties and within the assumptions/limitations of
various finite elements used. It is recommended that user analyze the model with few decreasing
maximum mesh sizes in order to ensure the convergence behavior of the model (i.e. results shouldn't
change significantly between different mesh sizes).

3.4.6 One-Way Deck


Typically a one-way deck is not considered in the analysis in RAM Concrete other then to determine
what nodes are to be slaved to what diaphragm. However, if there is a combination of one-way and twoway slabs on the same floor then the entire floor will be meshed. The loads that are applied to the oneway deck will be distributed in RAM Gravity and be applied as line and point loads on the supporting
members in RAM Concrete Analysis. This is unlike in the two-way areas where the load is actually
applied to the floor slab mesh itself. As no load is applied to the one-way mesh and as the loads on the
one-way deck are already distributed to supporting members the one-way deck itself is given nominal
(small) out of plane bending properties.

3.4.7 Transfer Columns on One-Way and Two-Way Slabs


A column can terminate and be supported by a two-way or one way slab. In the case of a two-way slab
the slab will be meshed and the bottom of the column will be considered integral with the slab. The
loads transferred down the column will be distributed through the floor finite elements to the
supporting members (columns and walls).
A Column supported on a one-way deck will be considered supported as the one-way slab itself is not a
part of the finite element model. However, the reaction of that column as calculated in RAM Gravity
(under the analysis assumptions of simply supported determinate beams and columns) and distributed
in one-way manner through the deck, will be applied to the beams or walls that support the deck (and
hence the transfer column). It is important to note then that the load in the column at the transfer level,
as calculated in the concrete analysis, is not considered, but the distributed transfer column force from
RAM Gravity is.
It is strongly recommended that a simply supported beam be added to span in the direction of the deck and
support the transfer column when it exists on a one-way deck.

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3.4.8 Hanging Columns off One-Way and Two-Way Slabs


A column can hang off by a two-way or one way slab. In the case of a two-way slab the slab will be
meshed and the top of the column will be considered integral with the slab. The loads transferred up the
column will be distributed through the floor finite elements to the supporting members (columns and
walls).
A Column hanging off a one-way deck will be considered supported as the one-way slab itself is not a
part of the finite element model. However, the reaction of that column as calculated in RAM Gravity
(under the analysis assumptions of simply supported determinate beams and columns) and distributed
in one-way manner through the deck, will be applied to the beams or walls that support the deck (and
hence the transfer hanging column). It is important to note then that the load in the hanging column at
the transfer level, as calculated in the concrete analysis, is not considered, but the distributed transfer
column force from RAM Gravity is.
Note: It is strongly recommended that a simply supported beam be added to span in the direction of the
deck and support the transfer hanging column when it exists on a one-way deck.

3.4.9 Transfer Walls on One-Way and Two-Way Slabs


Walls sitting on two-way slabs will be meshed integral with the slab and the load in the wall called down
and applied to the floor mesh through all the supported bottom nodes of the wall.
Walls sitting on one-way slab must be supported by a beam to have their load adequately considered in the
analysis.

3.4.10 Rigid Floor Diaphragm


RAM Concrete enforces the same rigid diaphragm approach as used in RAM Frame (see RAM Frame
Manual). All columns and beams within slab edges are attached to the diaphragm and those outside, or
in openings, are disconnected from the diaphragm. It is important to realize that unless specified
otherwise in the Criteria-Analysis dialog box for sloped framing at a story the diaphragm is always
assumed to be rigid on a horizontal plane. For sloped framing constrained in the horizontal plane only
this may result in unrealistic bending and torsion forces. Note that this behavior is a product of the finite
element constraints and analysis and is not a program error. To remove the diaphragm constraint from
a sloped diaphragm select the appropriate option in the Criteria-Analysis dialog box. There is currently
no additional control over specifying which nodes are to be considered attached or released from the
diaphragm.

3.4.11 Multiple Diaphragms


Where multiple slab edges are provided in a single story RAM Concrete will apply the rigid diaphragm
constraint to each one independently. That is two independent diaphragms on a single level will not be

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constrained to each other. Also the option to remove the rigid diaphragm constraint on a horizontal
diaphragm applies to each diaphragm independently. That is if members are sloped inside of one slab
edge but not another the 'Remove Rigid Diaphragm Constraint on Sloped Floor' option will only apply to
those nodes inside the slab edge that has sloped members.

3.4.12 P-Delta Effects


As the analysis performed in RAM Concrete is for a single story, with no lateral loading, second order
effects due to the models lateral translation are not considered to be significant. Therefore, P-Delta
effects are not considered in RAM Concrete.

3.4.13 Rigid End Zones


The joint face distance is the distance from centerline of joint to the face of the support of a beam or a
column element. Since there may be negligible deformation in this zone, analysis based on centerline-tocenterline dimensions of such members may overestimate the actual deflections of the structure.
Criteria - Analysis provides a feature to account for the effect of this area of little or no deformation by
allowing the user to specify that the joint face distance or a portion of it be considered a rigid end
zone. The rigid end zone is then assumed to be infinitely rigid. Member forces are always output at the
face of the joint whether or not rigid end zones are considered.
Since rigid end offsets reduce the effective length of a member, only the length of the flexible part of the
member is taken for stiffness calculations. The stiffness matrix is then transformed to a coordinate
system at the joints (see Reference 7, in Section 3.7).

Figure 9: Joint Face Distance

Joint Face Distance for Beams


The joint face distance at each end of a beam is given as:
cos2 + ColumnWidth sin2 )
( ColumnDepth
cos ( + )

JointFaceDist = 0.5
where

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ColumnDepth
and
ColumnWidth

the angle between the beam and the major direction of


the column that frames to it
the angle the beam's major axis makes with the horizontal
as shown in figure above
the angle the column makes with the vertical as shown in
figure above
the depth and width, respectively, of a column extending
down from the story level from the end of the beam under
consideration

When the plane of the beams web does not align with the plane of the column web, and are both
measured in the plane defined by the major axes of the column and beam.
The column below is used to calculate the joint face distance. The joint face distance will be zero at the
end of the beam if the beam or column is pinned in a given axis.

Joint Face Distance for Columns


Columns have joint face distances at the top and the bottom ends in both the major and minor
directions. The column joint face distances are determined from the depth of the beams that frame to
the column under consideration.
At each end of a column the joint face distance is calculated by:
Major Axis Rigid End Dist = 0.5 * Depth * Cos2
Minor Axis Rigid End Dist = 0.5 * Depth * Sin2
Depth =

BeamDepth
cos ( + )

ColumnDepth tan +

where
BeamDepth

the depth of the beam that frames into the columns

Major Axis Rigid Dist and Minor Axis Rigid Dist are calculated for each beam that frames to the
column, and the largest value is used. For pinned columns, the rigid end zone distance that corresponds
to the direction of moment release will be zero. Pinned beams produce no rigid end zone.

Figure 10: Joint Face Distance for Columns

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Effective Lengths and Reduction Factors


RAM Concrete uses the effective lengths of beams and columns to calculate the stiffness of these
members in the coordinate system at the end of the rigid end zone. These are then transformed to a
coordinate system at the joint centerline.
A reduction factor can be used to scale down the effect of the full rigid end offsets. The Rigid End Zone is
then given by:
REZ = R * Joint Face Distance
where
R

the reduction factor.

For beams the effective length is calculated as:


Leff = L - REZi - REZj
where
L
REZi
REZj

=
=
=

length of member, centerline to centerline


the Rigid End Zone at end i
the Rigid End Zone at end j

For columns, the major axis effective length is calculated as:


Leff = L - REZXTop - REZXBot
and the minor axis effective length is calculated as:
Leff = L - REZYTop - REZYBot
where
L
REZXTop
REZXBot
REZYTop
REZYBot

=
=
=
=
=

length of member, centerline to centerline


the Major Axis Rigid End Zone at Top
the Major Axis Rigid End Zone at Bottom
the Minor Axis Rigid End Zone at Top
the Minor Axis Rigid End Zone at Bottom

Rigid End Zones for Pinned Concrete Beams


RAM Concrete has implemented a special method to more accurately analyze the scenario of a pinned
concrete beam supported on the face of a column. For this situation RAM Concrete introduces an
additional finite element (stub) for the distance between column centerline and column face (full rigid
end zone length). This element is assigned section properties 1,000 times that of the beam itself to
ensure rigid behavior and avoid numerical inaccuracy. By implementing the pinned end in this manner
we assume that there is very little panel zone deformations considered in analysis. The original pinned
beam is assumed to span into the end of this internal stub rigid element. When this occurs at both ends
of the beam, the beam length is redefined in such a way that it extends for the clear length between
columns (as illustrated below).

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Figure 11:
This approach enables the columns to experience more accurate moments when subject to only gravity
loading. Note that all forces are presented in terms of the physical member, and this internal
manipulation should be transparent to the user.
For each load case where a beam is loaded, the joint will be subject to a moment equal to the reaction of
the gravity member times the rigid end zone distance (face to centerline). A good application for this
may be where a column supports precast concrete beams and the user would like to consider the effect
of beam skip loading on the design of the column.

Fixed End Forces


When calculating fixed-end forces of gravity loads on beams, all loads on the effective length are
considered. Gravity loads within the rigid end zones are converted into an equivalent point load that is
applied to the end of the rigid end zone (this could result in conservative moments at the joint
centerline).

Rigid End Zones in Short Finite Elements


In some cases, due to members that frame into rigid end zones, a finite elements length is shorter than
its rigid end zone length. In all cases where a member's rigid end zone length exceeds three-quarters of
the elements length, RAM Concrete ignores the rigid end zone, and uses the center-to-center dimension
as the effective lengths.
Similarly, columns in very short dummy stories could have rigid end zones larger than their own
heights. Again, in such cases RAM Concrete uses the clear heights of the columns as their effective
lengths without carrying out rigid end zone corrections.

3.4.14 Analysis Error Messages


Before solving the global stiffness matrix, a data check process is carried out to catch any invalid data.
This includes a check of invalid material or section properties. If this kind of error is detected, the
analysis is terminated and a message indicating the source of error is given. The user may need to
return to the RAM Modeler to modify the member's material or section properties if this occurs.
During the solution process the analysis may be interrupted if a negative diagonal number (negative
stiffness) is detected. This indicates an important stability problem that should be resolved. The
program will provide an error message that should be helpful in identifying the source of the problem.
This may include cases where all the members at a node are pinned for a specific degree of freedom. The

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user will likely need to return to the RAM Modeler to modify the model to enable it to be properly
analyzed.
During the meshing, if the mesher fails to mesh the slab deck then the program gives the location at
which the mesher encountered the error. It will also provide some directions on how to proceed to fix
the problem. The user will likely need to return to the RAM Modeler to modify the model to enable it to
be meshed successfully.
During the analysis, warning messages for local instabilities may be encountered. The local instability
warning message indicates that a very small stiffness value is found (which usually results from
incorrect section or material assignments, or improper release definitions at member ends located at a
node). These stability problems are suppressed by providing a very small finite number at these
locations in the global system stiffness matrix. However, it is strongly advised that the user check these
warning messages and verify the validity of analysis results.
It is important to note that often the error messages provided will reference a node number or member
number. The user should always be able to view the finite element model following an unsuccessful
analysis to view the node numbers for the story where the analysis was terminated. Refer to Section
2.7.2 for information on viewing the finite element model following an analysis.

3.5 Gravity Design Forces


The objective of the entire concrete gravity analysis mode is the generation of beam and column gravity
forces. It is important to note that these forces are not the final concrete design forces but rather they
are used in load combinations in the Concrete Beam and Concrete Column modes to calculate the final
design forces. Refer to the manuals for these two modes to find out how the Gravity Analysis mode
forces are utilized. This section describes how RAM Concrete computes the gravity forces in accordance
with the ACI code specification and also used for the BS8110 design.

3.5.1 Column Gravity Forces


ACI 8.8.1 stipulates, Columns shall be designed to resist the axial forces from factored loads on all floors
or roof and the maximum moment from factored loads on a single adjacent span of the floor or roof
under consideration. Loading condition giving the maximum ratio of moment to axial load shall also be
considered.
To implement the second requirement of ACI 8.8.1 Loading condition giving the maximum ratio of
moment to axial load shall also be considered, RAM Concrete considers the effect of each individual live
load case (see Section 3.3.10 for how load cases are computed) on each axis of the column. Note that if
the user selects not to skip load live loads (see Section 2.5.2) then this code provision will not be
implemented and the column force from all live loads applied at the same time will be computed for use
in the column mode design.
When considering skip loading the program computes the column moments for each column for each
live load case. It accumulates forces into four groups based on the sign and axis of the moments. In other
words, there are four groups of design forces, one for positive major axis moment, one for negative
major axis moment, one for positive minor axis moment and one for negative minor axis moment. For a
particular live load case, the program determines which two (one for each axis) of these groups the

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forces fall in. It then adds all the moments and the axial load, reduced by the appropriate live load
reduction factor (see Section 3.3.9) to that group. In this way the program calculates the absolutely
largest moment about each axis of the column and accumulates the associated other axis moment and
axial forces (irrespective of direction). As this process is performed for both top and bottom of the
column the program effectively calculates eight gravity live load force points for each column. Figure
3-15 shows a simple example for calculating forces at the top of a column, which is subject to three live
load cases.

Figure 12:
The program also tracks one additional axial load that is the column axial load due to all live load cases,
irrespective of column moment direction. This axial load is used in determining the design column
forces in the Concrete Column mode to meet the first requirement of ACI 8.8.1. Important, in the event
that a single stories column is broken into multiple finite elements (can only be due to openings that
intersect the column) the axial force from the lowest finite element in the column will be utilized in the
design. Refer to the Wall Openings and Meshing section in the technical notes for more information in
the Finite Element Mesh.

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As the program analyzes the structure one story at a time the program cannot calculate the column top
and bottom forces from the same analysis. As illustrated below for column 1, the column top forces are
calculated from the analysis at which the column top is at the story level being analyzed. For the column
bottom the forces are taken from the story analysis where the column bottom is at the story being
analyzed.

For Dead and Roof Live Load cases there is no skip loading and all the loads of these load types are
considered to occur simultaneously on a story and the single set of computed column forces is utilized
in the Column Design mode.
As column forces are calculated from top and bottom of the column in separate analyses, the associated
gravity shear force depends on which load pair (top and bottom) is assumed to occur at the same time.
The grouping of load pairs to obtain the largest shear force is described in more detail in the RAM
Concrete Column manual. Note that column forces are always recorded at the depth of the deepest beam
framing into the column (see Rigid End Zone Section 3.4.13). This is true for all cases except for lateral
columns, which are pinned by the user at the level of the story.
All the computed column forces for each column can be viewed in the Column Forces Report (see
Section 5.9).

Column Slenderness
Much of the information required to perform slenderness calculations is obtained in the Analysis Mode.
However, the actual application of the slenderness calculations is performed in the Concrete Column
Design mode. As such the description of the effect of slenderness, including Sidesway and Effective
Lengths, on the design column forces (data points) is described in detail in the Concrete Column Manual.

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3.5.2 Beam Gravity Forces


Each concrete beam, with an assigned beam line number, is divided into multiple stations. The program
will also automatically add stations at each point load, at the face of columns, at any location where any
other member frames into the physical beam. A station refers to a single point along the length of a
beam where beam forces will be computed and considered in the design. Note that beam forces are
always given up to the face of supports (where beams span into columns) or up to the end where they
span into other beams or walls. The user can control the quantity of stations by selecting the
appropriate option in the Analysis Criteria dialog box (see Section 2.5.2). RAM Concrete calculates beam
design forces for dead load, live load and roof live load independently.
For live load, ACI R8.9 reads as follows, The engineer is expected to establish the most demanding set
of design forces by investigating the effects of live load placed in various critical patterns. RAM
Concrete allows the engineer to implement this requirement by providing the option to skip load the
live load (see Section 2.5.2). This is similar to the intent of BS8110 3.2.1.2.2.
Where skip loading is selected for beam line or non-beam line beams, the following procedure for
calculating live load beam forces is implemented. For each live load case (see Section 3.3.10) of type
reducible, unreducible (includes partition) or storage (see Sections 3.3.1) the program will compute the
shear, moment and torsion at each station along the length of the beam. The program will then multiply
each of these forces by the appropriate member live load reduction factor (see Section 3.3.9) and sum
same-sign forces for each station. In other words, the program adds positive values to each other at each
station and negative values to each other at each station. Thus, only when a specific load case increases
the force at a station will it be considered. When completed the program has two curves for each beam
for the floor live load case, a positive and a negative curve. These curves represent the largest force
(positive and negative); from the worst skip loaded condition that can exist at any station along the
beam length. This process is illustrated graphically below.

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Forces from floor live load cases are added at each station where their effect increases the positive or
negative force at the station. For roof live load the forces are added together irrespective of sign to
produce a single curve.

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For dead load and roof live load no skip loading is performed and the forces produced are due to all
dead or roof live load applied simultaneously. There is only a single curve of forces for these load cases.
There is no moment redistribution implemented in RAM Concrete. Note that the user will find that in
most cases the reduction in the required moment capacity is not significant enough to justify the effort
of moment redistribution.
All the computed beam live load envelope and dead and roof load force diagrams can be viewed in the
Beam Line Force Envelope report (see Section 5.7)

3.5.3 Wall Gravity Forces


The following figure shows a configuration of a wall member comprised of a single finite element that
has a sloped edge at top and bottom of the wall. Member resisting forces calculated at the corner of the
walls are used to calculate wall member forces. Therefore,
Wall Shear Force = F1 + F2

Equation 3 - 4

Wall Axial Force = F3 + F2

Equation 3 - 5

Wall Moment = F 1d L + F 2d R + M 1 + M 2 + F 3 F 4

wL

Equation 3 - 6

Note: The wall overturning moment is taken around point O which is at the average height of nodes K
and L.

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Figure 13: Wall Forces with Sloping Edges


Due to modeling and analysis accuracy considerations, walls may be meshed by the program. In this
case, axial force, major axes shear and overturning moment of the meshed wall system is reported
instead of reporting individual wall member forces. This is explained in the Figure below where a wall
system is meshed with 3 sub-wall elements (Figure (a)) and the program reports combined effects as
shown in Figure (b). Note that all reported values are calculated at the centroid of the wall system,
which is automatically calculated by the program.

Figure 14: Combined Wall Forces

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Wall Sign Convention


Reported forces for wall members include axial force, major axis shear and major axis bending moment
(overturning moment). Figure below shows the positive direction of wall member forces. It should be
noted that the axial and shear forces are constant through the height of the walls.

Figure 15: Wall Forces Positive Sign Convention

3.6 Deflections
Within the RAM Concrete Gravity Analysis mode the beam deflections are generated. There are several
steps to the computation of gravity deflections from the original building model. First the full structural
model is broken into multiple finite element models, one for each story in the structure. Each finite
element model is then loaded with the appropriate gravity loads in specific load cases, and analyzed.
Following the analysis, local beam deflections are computed and combined per the code to produce the
most accurate gravity deflections. These gravity deflections are then used in the Concrete Beam mode to
calculate the final Dead, Live, Long Term and Net Deflections. This technical section describes the details
and assumptions made by the program in generating these beam deflections.

3.6.1 Deflection Measurement


Deflections are calculated at 20 evenly spaced stations along the center half of the clear span of each
beam. The program assumes that the maximum beam deflection will occur within this length. The
displacement at each end of a beam cantilever, where it exists, is also computed.
All deflections calculated in RAM Concrete are based on member local displacement. As illustrated
below the affect of beam support displacement (column shortening) does not impact the local member
displacement computed for a beam.

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3.6.2 Sign Convention


Negative deflection is considered to be an upward acting deflection, while positive deflection is a
downward acting deflection.

3.6.3 Skip Loading


Where specified by the engineer the beams on the structure will be skip-loaded with live load. Similarly
to how the program considers beam forces, the live load member deflections from each live (skip) load
case are combined so as to produce a maximum upwards and maximum downwards deflection
envelope for each beam. This is illustrated in the figure above.

3.6.4 Live Load Reduction


Each of the Building Codes has provisions for reducing the live loads under certain conditions. When
appropriate, the program automatically calculates these reduction factors and reduces the loads
accordingly. The program recognizes five types of live loads: Reducible, Storage, Unreducible, Roof and
Partition. The Roof load may be treated as either Reducible or Snow, as specified by the user in the RAM
Manager criteria. The partition live loads are always combined with Unreducible live loads.
Live load reduction factors are a function of the area associated with the loads acting on a member. In
calculating the reduction for a given load, the program only uses the area on the member associated
with that live load type. For example, if part of the load on a member is Reducible and part is Storage,
only the area associated with the Reducible loads will be included in the calculation of the reduction
factor on the Reducible loads, and only the area associated with the Storage loads will be included in the
calculation of the reduction factor, if permitted, on the Storage loads.

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Deflections

For each (skip) load condition the program will calculate the deflection for each member. Similar to
forces these deflections are then reduced by the appropriate live load reduction factor on each span as
illustrated above for several skip load cases.

3.6.5 Design Deflection Curves


The individual member live load deflection curves from each load case are combined by summing likesign deflections on each beam. That is, the analysis of each load case results in either positive (down) or
negative (up) deflection at each station along the beam. From each load case the positive deflections are
summed and the negative deflections summed (for all live load cases). The result of this process is a live

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load deflection 'envelope' containing the maximum upward and downward deflection at each station
from all skip load cases. Note that unlike for the beam forces, the roof live load deflection is not kept
independent of the floor live load deflections. As illustrated below the analysis will produce a single
curve for dead load deflections and an envelope of live load deflections for each beam. The live load
envelope illustrated below was computed from the skip live load cases illustrated above.

For the case where no skip loading is applied, a single deflection curve (similar to dead load) will be
obtained for Live Loads.

3.6.6 Special Conditions


There are a couple of special conditions that need to be considered with respect to the calculation of
deflections.
Pinned
Members

As described previously when a concrete beam member is pinned RAM Concrete


internally introduces a rigid element between column face and column centerline. When
member deflections are calculated they are based on the member local displacements
measured from a line between the supports of the physical beam. As illustrated below
the deflection value that is calculated incorporates any rotation that may occur within
the support (column), even when the member is pinned.

Cantilevers Deflections are measured at one station located at the end of the cantilever. The
cantilever deflection is measured perpendicular to the vector that would extend through
the two support nodes of the physical beam as illustrated in the previous section on
deflection measurement .

3.6.7 Shear Deformation


Following the analysis the nodal displacements at finite element nodes are calculated and stored. These
displacements are calculated considering the shear deformation of the members in the formulation of
the stiffness matrix. Using these calculated the displacements the final member local displacements
along its length are calculated in two steps as follows:

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References
1. The member deformation based purely on the end displacements of the finite element are calculated
( in Fig 1b),
2. The deformed shape due to any applied point or distributed loads on the member are then
calculated. During this second step the end displacements and rotations are considered fixed ( in Fig
1c).
The final element displacement along the member is obtained by combining these two calculated
displacements (v = v1 + v2).

Figure 16:
In lieu of dividing the member into smaller elements and calculating displacements at required stations,
RAM Concrete calculates the displacements 1 and 2 by solving corresponding differential equations,
considering any end releases, defined rigid ends and any loads on the members. This substantially saves
computational time if many member deflection values are required.
Note: Shear deformation is not considered in the calculating of the member local deformed shape (i.e.
when calculating 1 and 2). In some cases where shear deformation is significant (this is a function of
member length and cross-section dimensions) the current methodology may be slightly unconservative.

3.7 References
1. MacNeal, R.H., and Harder, R.L., (1988), A Refined Four-noded Membrane Element with Rotational
Degrees of Freedom, Computers & Structures, Vol. 28, No.1, pp. 75-84

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References
2. Ibrahimbegovic, A., Taylor, R. L., and Wilson, E. L., (1990), A Robust Quadrilateral membrane Finite
Element with Drilling Degrees of Freedom, International Journal for Numerical Methods in
Engineering, Vol. 30, 445-457
3. Ibrahimbegovic, A. and Wilson, E. L., (1991), "A Unified Formulation for Triangular and Quadrilateral
Flat Shell Finite Elements with Six Nodal Degrees of Freedom", Communications in Applied
Numerical Methods, Vol. 7, 1-9
4. Park and Paulay, John Wiley, (1975) Reinforced Concrete Structures
5. Ferguson, John Wiley, (1979) "Reinforced Concrete Fundamentals, 4th ed."
6. Motoya, Meseguer and Moran, 12th Edition, Ed. Gili, Madrid-Spain, (1988) Hormign Armado
(Spanish)
7. Ghali, A. and Neville, A.M., (1989) Structural Analysis: A Unified Classical and Matrix Approach,
Chapman and Hall, London.
Long, C.S, and Groenwold, A. A., (2004), Reduced Modified Quadratures for Quadratic Membrane
Finite Elements, International Journal of Numerical Methods in Engineering, 31:837-855
Taylor, R.L, (1987), Finite Element Analysis of Linear Shell Problems, Proceedings The Mathematics
of Finite Elements and Applications, Academic Press, New York, pp.211-22

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RAM Concept Column and Wall Force Integration

The RAM Structural System can use the column and wall forces that are exported from RAM Concept in
the RAM Concrete Analysis and Concrete Design Modules. This feature is only available with RAM
Concept v1.4 or later, and applies to RAM Concept models that are created in the RAM Structural System
and then imported into RAM Concept. Also, the import into RSS feature does not work for levels which
are influenced by hanger column forces.
RAM Concept can import loads and geometry from any story of a RAM Structural System model.
Following an analysis in RAM Concept the column and wall forces can be exported back into the RAM
Structural System for consideration in the concrete analysis and design modules. Within the RAM
Structural System the RAM Concept column and wall forces are integrated into the analysis results in
the RAM Concrete Analysis module. When forces have been exported from RAM Concept they can then
be selected to be included in the RAM Concrete Gravity Analysis. Following a successful analysis in RAM
Concrete the column design module will consider the RAM Concept column forces in the design.
The schematic below illustrates a possible workflow between RAM Structural System and RAM Concept
and is described as follows:
Start with a model created in RAM Structural System.
Import a story (Roof and 2nd) into RAM Concept, analyze and export the column forces back to the
RAM Structural System Model.
Import another story (2nd) into RAM Concept, analyze and export the column forces back to the RAM
Structural System model.
Invoke the RAM Structural System Concrete Analysis module and perform the analysis (selecting to
use the Concept Column Forces).
Switch to the RAM Concrete Column Design module and design the columns.
Import the final loads into RAM Concept for Mat Foundation design.
Note that in all cases the commands to both import and export occur from within RAM Concept. The
forces are not imported into the RAM Structural System from RAM Concept, but are exported from RAM
Concept into the RAM Structural System.

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RAM Modeler

RAM SS

RAM Model
Save()
RAM Concept

Import Roof()

TIME

Export Roof Forces()

Import 2nd()

Conc. Analysis

Export 2nd Forces()


Read Forces()

Save Results()

Conc. Design

Read Forces()

Save Designs()

Import Fnd Forces

= Time period that specific Module is active


Action()

= Interaction between modules, arrow shows direction of data flow

Figure 17: Workflow Between RAM Modules


As a result of the integration a new hyperstatic load case may be introduced into RAM Concrete. Please
refer to the RAM Concept documentation for more information on the origin of this force. Where they
exist in the Concept analysis the hyperstatic column forces are provided to the RAM Structural System
and considered in the analysis and design in the RAM Structural System.
Introduction
Concept member forces exported into the RAM Structural System are included in the analysis that is
performed in RAM Concrete. As described previously RAM Concrete analyzes each story
independently and carries the vertical reactions for each load case down to the story below for the
subsequent analysis. During this process, if any story is selected to use RAM Concept column forces,
the program will sum the Concept member force at that story with the force that is passed down

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from the levels above, to modify the column reactions (to be carried to the level below) and column
design forces at that level. Beam forces will continue to use the RAM Structural System concrete
analysis results, they are not exported back from RAM Concept. Note that the column forces from
RAM Concept could produce forces in the beams in the analysis performed at the story/s below the
columns. Also, the floor analysis of each story is still performed in RAM Concrete Analysis, even if it
is also performed in RAM Concept and forces are passed back. This is to allow RAM Structural
System to determine beam forces (which are not passed back from Concept), to distribute transfer
loads and to accumulate the forces from levels above the one being analyzed.
Important: Wall openings will be ignored in the concrete analysis for stories whose forces are
obtained from RAM Concept. This is to facilitate the integration of wall forces from RAM Concept
where wall openings are not currently available.
Results
As described previously the various beam, column and wall forces from each load case are available
for display on the screen following an analysis by selecting Process-Results. These forces are not
affected by the RAM Concept Forces except as indicated next.
The member forces shown on the screen are all taken from the RAM Concrete analysis (RAM Concept
member forces are not displayed on screen). However, when a story is selected to use RAM Concept
forces two things happen. First the design forces calculated for the columns at that story add the
Concept Force to the force that exists in the member due to the load on the levels above the one
being analyzed. And second, the reactions that are applied to the level below are modified to include
the RAM Concept column force. These are not visible on the screen except that the effect of the
reactions can be observed in the analysis results (on screen) of the story below.
Criteria Column Forces
Refer to the Criteria Section for more information on tracking the status of the RAM Concept Force
information and the RAM Structural System Model.
Reports
Refer to the Reports Section for more information on Concept Column Forces and Concept Wall
Forces Report.
Technical Notes
RAM Concept Wall and Column Forces
RAM Concept exports column moments at the base of the columns at the level above the story being
analyzed, and column top moments and axial forces for the columns below the story being analyzed.
The wall forces for walls located below the story are also exported back into the RAM Structural
System. No beam forces are exported from RAM Concept. There is no change in the sign convention
used in RAM Concrete. Refer to previous section in this manual for a description of the RAM Concrete
Sign Convention and how RAM Concrete determines the design column forces for columns that span
multiple levels.
Concept Story Status (State)
To coordinate the RAM Structural System model and the various RAM Concept models, the program
attempts to track how Concept as interacted with each story, and what the status of the shared data
is. This is so as to provide feedback to the user as to whether a particular set of column and wall
results for a story are one of the following:
Result/Color

Description

Current (Green) -

The RAM Structural and Concept Models are identical and in synch.

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Result/Color

Description

Not Current
(Yellow) -

There is some potential minor difference between the RAM Concept model and
the RAM Structural model. This is typically caused by a reframe of a story in the
RAM Structural System model at a point in time after Concept has imported the
loads and geometry for the story. It could however also refer to a change in
member size in RAM Structural System, which again has not been recognized in
the data that RAM Concept already has for this story.

Not Available
(Red) -

Typically indicates either RAM Concept has not imported any data for this story,
has not exported forces for this story, or that a significant (major) change has
occurred to this story in the Structural System model since either the import or
export occurred. A significant major change could be any of: Addition or deletion
of columns or walls, or the deletion of stories or changing the floor type on a
story.

The status of a particular story is determined using the following rules and definitions:
Status

Definition

Source Story:

Story whose model geometry and loads are imported into RAM Concept from.

Target Story:

Story that RAM Concept has exported forces to.

Floor type:

The floor that is assigned to a story in RAM Structural System. One or more
stories can be assigned the same floor type in the RAM Modeler.

Major Change
Time:

The most recent time that a significant change occurred to the story in the RAM
Structural System model. This change could be as a result of the addition or
deletion of columns or walls at a story, the addition or deletion of stories or the
changing of a story's floor type.

Minor Change
Time:

The most recent time that a minor change occurred to the story in the RAM
Structural System model. This change could be as a result of any reframe of a
story (moved framing, other model changes such as slab edge, load changes etc).

Major Read Time:

The most recent time at which RAM Concept imported the geometry and member
properties from the RAM Structural System for the particular story.

Minor Read Time:

The most recent time at which RAM Concept imported the story loads.

RAM Concept will export results back into the RAM Structural System providing the RAM Structural
System with the Target Story, the Source Story and a set of flags (values) related to actions made in
RAM Concept. These flags, which represent any difference between the RAM Concept and RAM
Structural System model, are used as the last criteria on which the story status is determined. Given
this information RAM Structural System determines the story status as follows.

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Transfer loads
All transfer loads are distributed during the RAM Concrete analysis. That is, if a transfer situation
exists the forces exported by RAM Concept for the transfer story, do not include the contribution of
the transfer load. The forces are transferred in RAM Concrete based on the support framing as
modeled in the Structural System model.
Self weight
The self-weight of slabs and beams is typically considered in the RAM Concept analysis. The column/
wall forces provided by RAM Concept account for the effects of self-weight as specified in RAM
Concept. It is the engineer's responsibility to ensure the self-weight settings of the RAM Structural
System and RAM Concept are in synch. The self-weight (when indicated to be included) of walls and
columns below a story being analyzed are calculated with RAM Concrete analysis and not provided
by RAM Concept.
Missing Member Forces
In some circumstances RAM Concept may only import a subset of the columns/walls at a story. This
typically occurs at partial levels where some of the columns/walls may not be enclosed in the slab
and hence are not considered in the Concept Analysis. Forces can then only be exported back to the
RAM Structural System for those walls and columns that were imported. In these cases the program

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will report the columns and walls for which no Concept forces are provided during the analysis in
RAM Concrete. In the case of the situation described this should not be a concern as the forces in
these members are still carried down from the levels above where they were actively supporting
slab or beam.
Column Design Forces
Column design forces are calculated as previously described in this manual. Skip loading forces
provided by RAM Concept are utilized when the skip load condition is specified in RAM Concrete
Analysis Criteria. Concept provides column forces for any/all of the following: Dead Load,
Hyperstatic Load, Roof Live, Storage Live, Floor Live and unreducible (includes partition) Live loads.
The live loads (excluding the roof) can be skip loaded and are shown as cumulative values in the
design report (considering the appropriate live load reduction factors).

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RAM Concrete Gravity Analysis Reports

RAM Concrete Gravity output is designed to provide the engineer with all necessary data for the review
of calculations for the generation of the column and beam gravity forces. The reports also provide some
information that can be used to independently verify the results obtained in the analysis. The engineer
is encouraged to print out sample reports to refer to when reading this section of the manual.
Below is a summary of the reports available in the RAM Concrete Gravity Analysis mode. A more
complete explanation of RAM Concrete Gravity Analysis output follows.
Model Data

Generates a list of all concrete lateral and gravity members and story data.

Member Analysis
Properties

Generates a report of cross-sectional dimensions of all concrete beams and


columns and calculated values for all members regarding their section
properties such as area, major and minor axis moment of inertia, and torsional
stiffness constant.

Vertical Reactions

Generates a report for sum of vertical reactions for each story. The vertical
reactions are calculated for all the applied load cases.

Analysis Criteria

Generates a report showing parameters defined in the Analysis Criteria Dialog


and parameters assigned to individual members.

Beam Load
Diagram

Generates a report of applied and distributed loads on concrete beams.

Beam Line Force


Envelope

Generates a report of dead load and live load envelope forces at quarter points
for all beams that have the same beam line number.

Beam Deflections

Deflection values for all beam line beams for Dead and Live load (upward and
downward maximum per skip loading).

Column Forces

Generates a report of dead load and skip loaded concrete column forces.

Concept Column
Forces

If RAM Concept Column Forces are integrated into the Concrete Analysis a
report of the Concept produced column forces is available. The report is not
cumulative and only contains the column forces exactly as they were exported
from RAM Concept.

Wall Forces

Generates a report of wall dead and live forces as calculated in RAM Concrete

Concept Wall
Forces

If RAM Concept Wall Forces are integrated into the Concrete Analysis a report of
the Concept exported wall forces is available. The report is not cumulative and
only contains the wall forces exactly as they were exported from RAM Concept.

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Concrete Model Data

5.1 General Comments on Reports


The heading contains information about RAM Concrete Analysis and the model that the output
represents. The Date field is the time and date the database was last updated, not the time the report
was printed.
All values that have unit dimensions have the units reported in brackets after the value description. The
report descriptions below are only provided where reports may require further description.
Descriptions are not provided for items that are self-explanatory.

5.2 Concrete Model Data


The model data report includes all information on the model related to geometry and user assigned
section and fixity properties for concrete members. The report includes the following:
Story Data

Each story's floor type and floor-to-floor heights as specified in the RAM Modeler.

Column
Section
Properties

User defined concrete section properties as specified in the RAM Modeler.

Beam Section User defined beam section properties as specified in the RAM Modeler. Includes the
Properties
following:
# - Member identifier (next section of report refers to the section by identifier).
Label User assigned section label for T and Rectangular beams. For pan joists the
name is assigned by the RAM Modeler and represents the pan-joist size each side of
the pan joist (or a dimension for an odd spaced pan if required). Refer to the RAM
Modeler manual for more information on pan joist labeling.
Depth For T and Rectangular sections this represents the full depth of the section
(Top of concrete slab to bottom of web). For pan joists this represents the distance
below the slab (pan depth).
Width The total flange width of the section (if user specified flange overhangs are
provided, this value will then equal the sum of the web thickness and the flanges
overhangs). If the field is calc then the properties are calculated and can be
obtained from the Member Analysis Properties Report.
Flange Overhang Dimensions of the flange width each side of the web. This
dimension is measured from the outer edge of the web to the edge of the flange. If
the field is calc then the properties are calculated and can be obtained from the
Member Analysis Properties Report.
Flange Thickness Dimensions of the flange thickness each side of the web. If the
field is calc then the properties are calculated based on the assigned slab, and can
be obtained from the Member Analysis Properties Report.
Web Thickness The section web width. If the field is var then the properties are
variable and can be obtained from the Member Analysis Properties Report.
Crack Factor The user assigned factor that is used to modify the analysis section
properties as described in Section 3.2.6.

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Member Analysis Properties
Members

Concrete member specific calculated or assigned properties, including the following:


X, Y - Member X and Y coordinates in plan.
ZOffset Distance of column top above or below the story elevation. For beam
sections there are two rows of information representing the I and J end of the
beam.
RigMaj, RigMin Rigid end zone distances for major and minor axis.
FrameTy Member frame type (lateral or gravity)
Fixity Member assigned fixity conditions. Note that these may not be the same as
the fixity seen when using the Process-Results-FE Model Info command as
explained in Section 3.2.3.
Section The member identifier for the section described in the Column Section
Properties and Beam Section Properties at the top of the report.

5.3 Member Analysis Properties


The member analysis properties report includes all information on the members related to the cross
section dimensions and section properties used in the analysis. The report is divided into two segments,
the section dimensions segment followed by the section properties segment.
Section
Dimensions

The actual calculated or assigned segment dimensions to be used to calculate the


section properties for analysis. Column titles have the same meaning as the titles
in the Concrete Model Data report.

Calculated Section This section reports the calculated section properties that are used in the
Properties
analysis. Refer to Section 3.2.6 for an explanation of how the section properties
are calculated.

5.4 Vertical Reactions


The vertical reactions report presents a summary of the total vertical reactions for each story. The
vertical reactions are shown in sequence starting from top level and ending at bottom level. These
reactions are shown separately for all the applied load cases.

5.5 Analysis Criteria


This report contains the global and individual member analysis criteria.
The global information reported includes the analysis criteria (see Section 2.5.2), the Sidesway criteria
(see Section 2.5.4) the Effective Length criteria (see Section 2.5.5) and the column Bracing information
(see Section 2.5.6).

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Beam Load Diagram
The user can override Effective Length and Sidesway on an individual column basis as described in
Section 2.6. The report shows these criteria settings for each concrete column.
The Criteria Report also incorporates the RAM Concept Column Forces information if it exists.

5.6 Beam Load Diagram


This report displays the user applied line and point loads, and the tributary surface loads to a beam. The
report also indicates the location of members that are supported on the selected beam. This report can
be generated for a single, fence or all beams.

5.7 Beam Line Force Envelope


This report provides the Dead Load, Live Load and Roof Live Load beam forces at five stations for the
selected beam line beams. When live load is skipped a maximum and minimum force value is given at
each of the output stations for live load. Refer to Section 3.5.2 for an explanation of how the beam forces
are calculated. These forces are combined with lateral forces in RAM Concrete Beam mode to produce
the final design envelopes.
The output is provided at the quarter point and midpoint of the beam, measured from the full
centerline-to-centerline distances. The first and last (0% and 100%) stations are at the face of the
column where a beam is supported by a column and otherwise at the centerline. Note that within each
beam line the beams (output) are sorted in the order they occur in the beam line. If the orientation of
any beam is opposite to the direction of the beam line, the forces will still be output in the direction of
the beam line.
All live load values have already been reduced by the applicable live load reduction factors. Even though
the envelope values are calculated for cantilever beams the forces are only provided for the back-span
and not the cantilever span.
In the case of a hyperstatic column load being introduced by RAM Concept report may show an
additional hyperstatic set of forces. It is important to note that these hyperstatic forces on the beams are
NOT the hyperstatic beam forces that exist in the beams in RAM Concept due to the Concept Analysis.
Rather, they are the forces that exist in the beams as a result of the RAM Concrete analysis due to the
Hyperstatic forces in the columns that were exported from Concept into the RAM Structural System.

5.8 Beam Deflection


Following a successful analysis the user can obtain a printout of the calculated Dead and Live load
deflections at a number of stations along the member length. Select the Reports Beam Deflection
command to obtain the desired beam deflection report. All beam deflections are based on beam section
properties and assigned cracked section properties.

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Column Forces
To generate a report for a single beam select the Beam Deflection-Single command and click on a
concrete beam. To generate a deflection report for multiple members select the Beam Deflection Fence command and fence the beams.
This report displays the Dead Load and Roof Live Load deflections as the ends of cantilevers and at
several stations along the length of the beam. For live load the maximum positive and negative
deflection values are reported at each station. Refer to the technical section for more information on
how these values are calculated and the effect of skip loading on these values.

5.9 Column Forces


This report provides the Dead Load, Live Load and Roof Live Load column forces at top and bottom of
each column. When live load is skipped four separate live load cases are reported, namely:
Maximum Mmajor+, Maximum Mmajor-, Maximum Mminor+ and Maximum Mminor-. For example, the
Max Mmajor + row represent the sum of all the column forces from all load cases which produced a
positive major axis moment, likewise for the other rows. Refer to Section 3.5.1 for an explanation of how
exactly the column forces are calculated. These forces are then combined with lateral forces in the
column mode to produce the final design forces (see RAM Concrete Column Manual for more
information).
The output is provided at the face of columns where they frame into beams top or bottom, or at
centerlines otherwise. All live load values have already been reduced by the applicable live load
reduction factors.
In the case of a hyperstatic column load being introduced by RAM Concept the reportmay show an
additional hyperstatic set of forces.

5.10 Concept Column Forces


To display the column forces exported from RAM Concept into RAM Structural System select the
Reports Concept Column report. This report shows the exact forces exported by RAM Concept. These
forces are only from the single floor analysis performed in RAM Concept and do not include any loads
from the level above. The forces are only available if the state of the Concept forces is such that they are
available (whether status Current or Not Current) as described in the technical notes below. Again these
forces are added to the forces that are passed down from the levels above during the analysis.
In the case of a hyperstatic column load being introduced by RAM Concept the Reports - Column
Design Forces and Reports- Beam Line Force Envelope reports may show an additional hyperstatic
set of forces.

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Concept Wall Forces

5.11 Wall Forces


A Wall Force Report option is available in RAM Concrete Module. This report provides the Dead Load,
Live Load and Roof Live Load wall force for the selected wall/s. The output is presented at the origin of
the wall as described in the technical section below.
Note that as the walls are restrained against translation at the levels above and below the story being
analyzed, the shear and moment that would occur where the walls are free to displace horizontally are
not observed. As such only the axial wall force is considered acceptable for design purposes. If the
gravity wall will displace significantly under gravity loads, and experience significant shear and moment
forces it is recommended to make the wall lateral and use the gravity forces out of RAM Frame.

5.12 Concept Wall Forces


To display the wall forces exported from RAM Concept into RAM Structural System select the Reports
Concept Wall Forces report.
These reports show the exact forces exported by RAM Concept. These forces are only from the single
floor analysis performed in RAM Concept and do not include any loads from the level above. The forces
are only available if the state of the Concept forces is such that they are available (whether status
Current or Not Current) as described in the technical notes below. Again these forces are added to the
forces that are passed down from the levels above during the analysis.

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Index
A

Aanlysis Criteria 87
Analysis
Error Messages 65
Global Coordinate System
56
Analysis Criteria 13
Analysis Stations 13
Analysis Technical 56
analytical model
material properties 41
section properties 42
Analytical Model
Boundary Conditions 38
Fixity Conditions 39
Geometry 38
Analyze 26
Assign
Beam Lines Automatic 24
Beam Lines Manual 24
Beam Size 24
Column Size 23
Effective Length Factor 23
Automatic Beam Lines 24

Beam Deflection 88
Beam Fixity 27
Beam Forces
Stations 68
Beam Gravity Forces 68
Beam Line Force Envelope 88
Beam Line Numbers 35
Beam Lines
Assign 24
View 35
Beam Lines Automatic 24
Beam Lines Manual 24
Beam Load Diagram 88
Beam Size

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Assign 24
Beam Torsion Stiffness 13
Beam Under Two-Way Slab 42
beams
joint face distance for 62
Beams 68
beams under two-way slabs 44
Boundary Conditions 38
Bracing 22
Building Codes 37

Code 13
Colors
Database Status 11
Column
Skip Loading 66, 68
Column Fixity 27
Column Forces 19, 89
Column Size
Assign 23
Column Slenderness 13, 66, 68
columns
joint face distances for 63
Concept Column Forces 89
Concrete Module
Starting 11
Criteria
Analysis 13
Bracing 22
Code 13
Column forces 19
Effective Length 21
Sidesway 20

Database Status 11
Dead 45
Dead Load 45
Deflections 7376

91

Diaphragm 60
Displacements 33

Effective Length 21
Effective Length Factor 21, 23,
66, 68
effective lengths 64
Element Formulation 57, 58
Envelope
Beam Forces 68
Error Messages 65

FE Nodes 27
File
Model Status 11
Finite Element Model 27
Fixity 39
Fixity Conditions 39

Geometry
Analytical Model 38
Global Coordinate System 56
Gravity Design Forces
Beams 68
Column 66, 68
Walls 71, 73
Gravity Loads 34, 42, 45

Index Term 11, 35, 36, 40, 60,


61, 8587

joint face distance


for beams 62

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joint face distances


columns 63
technical notes 62

Live 45
Live Load
Partition 7376
Reducible 7376
Roff Reducible 7376
Storage 7376
Unreducible 7376
live load reduction 53
Live Load Reduction
Criteria 13
RAM Concrete 54
Load properties 45
Loading 13
Loads
Dead 45
Live 45
Live Load Reduction 54
Mass Dead Load 45
Slope 47, 48
Surface Loads 45
Two-Way Deck 49
loads on slab edges 49
Local Coordinate System 56

Manual Beam Lines 24


Mass Dead Load 45
material properties
concrete 41, 42
other 42
steel 42
Member Analysis Properties 85,
87
Member Fixity Condtions
Analytical Model 39
Member Forces 31
Mesh 27
Mesh Controls 13
Mode 13
Model Boundary Conditions
Analytical Model 38

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Model Data
Report 85
Model Status 11
Moment Redistribution 71, 73
Multiple Diaphragms 61

One-Way Deck 48

P-Delta Effects 62
Partition 7376
Penetrations 51
Performance 13
Process
Results
Displacements 33
Member Forces 31
Vertical Reactions
30
Properties
Loads 45

RAM Concept Integration 79


RAM Concrete 54
Reducible 7376
reduction factors 64
References 77
Report Destination 34
Reports
Analysis Criteria 87
Beam Deflection 88
Beam Line Force Envelope
88
Beam Load Diagram 88
Column Forces 89
Concept Column Forces 89
Member Analysis Properties
85, 87
Model Data 85
Wall Forces 89, 90
Results
Displacements 33
Finite Element Model 27

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Member Forces 31
Vertical Reactions 30
rigid end zone
joint face distance at
columns 63
rigid end zones
effective lengths 64
fixed end forces 65
joint face distance for beams
62
pinned concrete beams 64
reduction factors 64
short finite elements 65
technical notes 62
Rigid End Zones 13
Rigid Floor Diaphragm 61
Roff Reducible 7376

section properties
concrete 43, 44
concrete beams 44
other 45
steel 45
Self-Weight Calculations 46
Sidesway
Partial Bracing 20
Sign Convention 56, 71, 73
Skip Loading
Beam Forces 68
Column 66, 68
Technical 55
Slab Deck Element 57, 58
slab edges
loads 49
Slab Openings 51
Slenderness
Effective Length 66, 68
Sidesway 66, 68
Slope 47, 48
Sloping Framing 47, 48
Solver Type 13
Speed 13
Starting 11
Stations 13, 68
Status

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Colors 11
Storage 7376
Surface Loads 45

Torsional Stiffness 42
Two-Way Deck 49
Two-Way Slab 59

Technical 55
technical notes
joint face distances 62
rigid end zones 62
Technical Notes 37
Toolbar 11, 12
torsional stiffness 44

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Unreducible 7376

Vertical Reactions 30
View
Beam Line Numbers 35
Beam Lines 35

93

Gravity Loads 34

Wall Element Formulation 57,


58
Wall Forces 89, 90
Wall Gravity Forces 71, 73
Wall Openings 58, 59
Walls 71, 73

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