# Why Structural Calculations are Significant in Design

Feb 3
17:01

2021

Judith Morrison

This article showcase what are structural calculations, how structural calculations fit into the design process and when are they necessary?

Designing a building involves multiple disciplines and each contributes a vital element to the process. Architects create the overall look of buildings by giving shape to your vision through drawings.

Structural engineers design structures to resist wind loads, withstand gravity & continue to stand still even if the ground beneath the building starts to shake. Structural calculations help engineers to design the building structure. If you’re planning a construction project, you would have probably heard of them. Are you wondering about what they are and how to apply them to your project? If yes, then that is what we plan to divulge today through this write-up. The article explains what structural calculations are, their necessity and who can typically help you with them.

What exactly are Structural Calculations?

Structural calculations are the comprehensive planning process. They are detailed calculations report to be performed before the design and build project is carried out. Structural engineers use them to define the loads that a structure must withstand and the properties of members that comprise its system.

It includes information on how foundations will be dug, materials required, details of structural works, reinforcements used, environmental considerations, potential improvements, loading analysis and more. A qualified structural engineer is capable of creating structural calculations report. Quality calculations can help you economize on your construction project.

How Structural Calculations Fits in Design Process?

The first stage of the design process is architectural planning. This phase gives you a chance to share your vision with the architect. The client can communicate their thoughts about the structure’s appearance, function & cost. The architect then incorporates those conceptions into the design and lays them out in a set of drawings.

The next phase is to design a robust structure that supports the building’s architectural features. The structural engineers’ team perform various calculations during this process.

Engineers must predict specified loads they expect to act on the building that includes:

Live loads: Imposed by the occupants, furniture and other equipment

Environmental loads: Caused by natural forces such as wind, rain, snow, earthquake, or extreme temperatures.

After this, structural engineers work on the design loads intended to handle by the structure. Design loads are often higher than specified loads. Buildings are designed to withstand more loads than they are likely to bear. Engineers can design the system with established loads. Building code dimension tables are used to find out appropriate sizes of structural elements.

Next, engineers must work out the design loads - the loads they intend the structure to handle. These are higher than specified loads, as buildings are typically designed to withstand more loads than they are likely to bear. By looking at the established values, such as dead and live loads, these tables allow the user to arrive at unknown variables, such as the depth of a beam or a column’s width.

When Are Structural Calculations Required?

Structural calculations play a vital role when undertaking a new construction project. They are an essential part of the construction project because of two primary reasons:

1. The government requires them. One cannot engage in the construction process without having structural calculations.
2. Structural calculations provide an extensive plan for a construction project. It enables you to visualize potential risks as well as requirements before you build.

If you’re looking for a trusted partner for your next construction project, consider hiring a team of skilled engineers offering structural and stress analysis services.

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