Probability Based Load Criteria: Assessment of Current Design Practice

by Theodore V. Galambos, (F.ASCE), Prof. of Civ. Engrg.; Univ. of Minnesota, Minneapolis, Minn.,
Bruce Ellingwood, (A.M.ASCE), Research Struct. Engr.; Center for Building Tech., National Bureau of Standards, Washington, D.C.,
James G. MacGregor, (F.ASCE), Prof. of Civ. Engrg.; Univ. of Alberta, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada,
C. Allin Cornell, (M.ASCE), Prof. of Civ. Engrg.; Stanford Univ., Palo Alto, Calif.,

Serial Information: Journal of the Structural Division, 1982, Vol. 108, Issue 5, Pg. 959-977

Document Type: Journal Paper


This is the first of two papers that describe a study conducted to develop probability-based load factors and load combinations suitable for use with the loads specified in American National Standard A58 on design loads and with all common construction materials and technologies. The first part of the study, described in this paper, involved the selection of a probabilistic methodology for performing the necessary reliability analyses and the collection and examination of statistical data on structural resistance and loads. Levels of reliability implied by the use of current design standards and specifications for common design situations in which performance generally is felt to be satisfactory were then estimated.

Subject Headings: Load factors | Load combinations | Probability | Load and resistance factor design | Standards and codes | Construction materials | Structural analysis | Structural reliability

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