2 Flat slabs
3.2.1 Introduction
Slabs which are not supported by beams or walls along the edges but are supported directly
by columns are known as flat slabs (Fig. 3.2.1). The required slab depth for such a system is
generally less than for a oneway spanning slab system but greater than for a twoway
spanning slab system. However, the use of flat slabs results in a reduced depth of structure
overall as beams, when they are present, govern the structural depth. Another great advantage
of this system is that it only requires simple shuttering there are no beams for which
formwork must be prepared. One disadvantage of flat slab construction is that the
arrangement of reinforcement can be very complex, particularly adjacent to columns where
punching shear reinforcement is often required if the slab depth is kept to a minimum.
Flat slabs are often provided with drops or enlarged column heads, as illustrated in Fig.
3.2.2, to increase the shear strength of the slab around the column supports. However, this
substantially increases the complexity of the shuttering, countering one of the principal
advantages of the system.
Figure 3.2.2 Flat slab construction details: (a) no column head; (b) flared column head;
(c) slab with drop panel; (d) flared column head and drop panel.
g qd L2 L
d
2h
M0
1 c
8
3
The effective dimensions of a column head for use in calculation of hc are limited
according to the depth of the head. In any direction, the effective dimension of a head
Lh shall be taken as
The lesser of the actual dimension Lh o , or Lh,max, where Lh,max is given by:
Lh,max = Lc + 2dh
For a flared head, the actual dimension Lho is that measured to the center of the
reinforcing steel (see Fig. 3.2.4).
A drop may only be considered to influence the distribution of moments within the
slab where the smaller dimension of the drop is at least one third of the smaller
dimension of the surrounding panels. Smaller drops may, however, still be taken into
account when assessing the resistance to punching shear.
In the case of vertical loading, the full width of the panel, and
For lateral loading, half the width of the panel may be used to calculate the
stiffness of the slab.
The moment of inertia of any section of slab or column used in calculating the relative
stiffness of members may be assumed to be that of the cross section of the concrete
alone.
Moments and forces within a system of flat slab panels may be obtained from analysis
of the structure under the single load case of maximum design load on all spans or
panels simultaneously, provided:
The ratio of the characteristic imposed load to the characteristic dead load
does not exceed 1.25.
The characteristic imposed load does not exceed 5.0 kN/m2 excluding
partitions.
Where it is not appropriate to analyze for the single load case of maximum design
load on all spans, it will be sufficient to consider the following arrangements of
vertical loads:
All spans loaded with the maximum design ultimate load, and
Alternative spans with the maximum design ultimate load, and all other spans
loaded with the minimum design ultimate load (1.0Gk)
Each frame may be analyzed in its entirety by any elastic method. Alternatively, for
vertical loads only, each strip of floor and roof may be analyzed as a separate frame
with the columns above and below fixed in position and direction at their extremities,
In either case, the analysis shall be carried out for the appropriate design ultimate
loads on each span calculated for a strip of slab of width equal to the distance between
center lines of the panels on each side of the columns.
Simplified Method
Moments and shear forces in nonsway flat slab structures may be determined using
Table 3.2.1, subject to the conditions described below.
The following limitations shall be observed when using the simplified method:
Design is based on the single load case of all spans loaded with the maximum
design ultimate load.
There are at least three rows of panels of approximately equal span in the direction
being considered.
Successive span length in each direction shall not differ by more than onethird of
the longer span.
Maximum offsets of columns from either axis between center lines of successive
columns shall not exceed 10% of the span (in the direction of the offset).
Table 3.2.1 Bending Moment and Shear Force Coefficients for Flat Slabs of Three or
More Equal Spans
Outer support
Column
Moment
Shear
Total column
moments
Near
First
Center of Interior
first span
support
Center of Interior
interior
support
span
Wall
0.040FL
0.45F
0.020FL
0.40F
0.083FL

0.063FL
0.60F
0.071FL

0.055FL
0.50F
0.040FL
0.022FL
0.022FL
NOTE 1. F is the total design ultimate load on the strip of slab between adjacent columns considered.
2. L is the effective span = L1 2hc/3.
3. The limitations in section 3.2.2 need not be checked.
4. The moments shall not be redistributed.
75
55
25
45
Negative
Positive
NOTE: For the case where the width of the column strip is taken as equal to that of the drop,
and the middle strip is thereby increased in width, the design moments to be resisted by the
middle strip shall be increased in proportion to its increased width. The design moments to be
resisted by the column strip may be decreased by an amount such that the total positive and
the total negative design moments resisted by the column strip and middle strip together are
unchanged.
Figure 3.2.6 Minimum Bend Point Location and Extension for Reinforcement in Flat
Slabs
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Internal panels
The column and middle strips shall be designed to withstand the design moments
obtained from section 3.2.2.
Twothirds of the amount of reinforcement required to resist the negative design moment
in the column strip shall be placed in a width equal to half that of the column strip and
central with the column. This concentration of reinforcement over the column will
increase the capacity of the slab for transfer of moment to the column by flexure (see
Section 3.2.4)
Edge panels
The design moments shall be apportioned and designed exactly as for an internal panel,
using the same column and middle strips as for an internal panel.
1 b1 b2
shall be considered transferred by flexure over an effective slab width between lines
that are one and one half slab or drop panel thickness (1.5h) outside opposite faces of
the column or capital.
(c) Concentration of reinforcement over the column by closer spacing as specified in
Section 3.2.2, or additional reinforcement must be used to resist the unbalanced
moment on the effective slab width defined in (b).
(d) The design for transfer of load from slab to supporting columns or walls through shear
and torsion shall be in accordance with Section 3.2.4.
(e) As an alternative to (b) above, the slab may be designed for the minimum bending
moments per unit width, msdx and msdy in the x and y direction, respectively, given by
Equation below (see Fig. 3.2.7).
Position of
column
Internal column
Edge columns
Edge of slab
Parallel, to xaxis
Edge columns
Edge of slab
Parallel to yaxis
Corner column
n for msdy
Effective
width
n for msdy
top
bottom
Effective
width
top
0.125
bottom
0
0.3Ly
0.125
0.3Lx
0.25
0.15Ly
0.125
0.125
(per m)
0.125
0.5
0.125
0.5
(per m)
(per m)
0.25
0.5
0
0.5
0.15.Lx
(per m)
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Figure 3.2.7 Bending Moments mSdx and mSdy in SlabColumn Joints subjected to
Eccentric Loading, and Effective Width for resisting these Moments.
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12
Where:
k1 1 50 e 2.0
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Where:
1eud Z
e = eccentricity of the load or reaction with respect to the centroid of the
critical section, always positive.
Z = section modulus of the critical section, corresponding to the direction of
the eccentricity.
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