Data Modelling for Steel Frame Structures

by Ajay P. Lavakare, Stanford Univ, Stanford, United States,
D. H. Douglas Phan, Stanford Univ, Stanford, United States,
H. Craig Howard, Stanford Univ, Stanford, United States,

Abstract: The first step to automate any facet of structural engineering is developing a suitable data representation upon which the computer program will operate. However, there is no standard basis for representing structural data. A data model for steel frame structures is described in this paper. This model is an object-oriented representation of the data required to describe steel skeletal frameworks comprehensively. The model was evaluated by applying it to a real steel frame structure. A number of previous attempts at structural data models were also examined. Problems with the data models and the data modelling methodology adopted are explored in this paper. A new object-oriented approach to data modelling applied to steel frame structures is describes. In this approach, the primitive data concepts of a structural engineering domain are defined as separate atomic objects and assembled to form composite abstractions that structural engineers customarily use, thereby avoiding some of the pitfalls of previous models and modelling methodologies.

Subject Headings: Data processing | Steel frames | Steel structures | Structural models | Data analysis | Automation

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