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staad modeling

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>In my earlier version of STAAD, it says that TRUSS can be used 
>for either a plane or space analysis. If all of your members 
>are only to be designed to carry axial loads the TRUSS command 
>seems best to avoid the extra work of entering releases. But if 
>you want to model the chords as continuous members, the SPACE 
>command would be better - but can't you do a "list" of members to 
>be defined as "truss" members, rather than entering end releases? 
>As others have noted, you make encounter member instability errors 
>when entering end releases, which require one end to have rotational 

the "member truss" command would be correct if the member was pinned at both ends, such as in horizontal members of a communication tower.  

however, for the diagonals, in which the the two members are in an "X" configuration, usually in actual construction, one of the diagonal is one continuous member, but in staad model, this would still have to be two members because there would have to a joint at the intersection of the two members.  the continuous member cannot be defined as a truss because there should not be a release at the center.  thus we release only the ends that connect to the posts for moments.  for the other diagonals, it is ok to define them as member truss because they are in actuallity, one member that extends from the posts to the other diagonal.

however, sometimes, some contractors, provide plates at the intersections, to which they bolt the four members of the diagonals.  in this case, the four members would be defined as truss members.  but most do not like this method as this is more tedious and expensive.  so they opt for the first method.  in which case, we must also ensure that our assumptions in creating the staad model is correct.

so far, in my experience (and very little at that), the method of releasing the joints have not caused any instability errors.  what i am concerned about is if the principle and the way i use that principle in creating the staad model are correct.  to be honest, the engineers at my firm do not receive any formal training in staad (or on any other softwares we use, for that matter).  

>> Given the allowable soil bearing capacity, how is the modulus of 
>> subgrade reaction computed?
>Generally there is not direct correlation, although Bowles does give 
>an equation for estimating purposes. In a previous thread on modeling 
>the modulus of subgrade reaction, it was suggested to "bracket" the 
>design by making runs with both a high and a low estimate of subgrade 
>reaction, such as 50 pci and 300 pci. Most decently compacted soils should 
>have a modulus in the range of 100 to 200 pci, so this seems reasonable. 

i have read that the value of (120 * allowable soil bearing pressure) is a good estimate of the modulus of sugrade reactiom, as recommended by bowles.  now the value of 120*qa would have a unit of pressure, such as kilopascal (kpa).  is the value of the modulus of subrade reactions (kfy) that staad expects from the user, should this also be in kpa?