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Fastrak Composite Beam

Precast Concrete Slabs to SCI P287

FASTRAK COMPOSITE BEAM DESIGN PRECAST CONCRETE SLABS TO SCI P287

1. Introduction

The SCI Publication, Design of Composite Beams Using Precast Concrete slabs (SCI P287) was published in mid-2003. That document encapsulates the latest research and design guidance on the subject that is applicable to precast concrete (pc) solid and hollow slabs from those manufacturers who are members of the Precast Flooring Federation (PFF).

This document identifies areas where Fastrak departs from the guidance given in SCI P287 and what effect that may have on design.

The information relates to Fastrak Building Designer Version 5.1 and later.

2. Effects on input

Slab depths –

Although the range of slab depths has been changed to an upper limit of 260 mm, the common range appears to be consistent with the 150, 200,and 250 depths provided in Fastrak. Hence there has been no change to the allowable depth range although you can include additional manufacturers in the Decking.mdb file to be found (usually) in the Program files\Common files\CSC shared\Dlists folder.

Minimum flange width –

The requirements for minimum width of flange are quite comprehensive in SCI P287. It is suggested that you read and take note of these in deciding the beam section sizes for use with pc slabs acting compositely. The absolute minimum flange width imposed by Fastrak is 130 mm. This is applied during input when the section size is known and during the section size selection process during automatic design. This limit is the summation of the minimum bearing width and the minimum gap allowed in SCI P287.

Stud size and strength –

Permitted stud sizes are 19φ and 22φ by 125 and 155 high – the latter for use with solid units of 100 mm depth – although “other heights may be used”. In calculating the stud design strength, an additional reduction factor is used dependent upon the gap between units over the flange, the bar size of the transverse reinforcement and the width of an individual unit. You can now select from this range of studs and the information is included in a new database file, Connectors.mdb. The stud strength incorporates an estimate of the typical stud strength reduction factor that is given in

Fastrak Composite Beam

Precast Concrete Slabs to SCI P287

SCI P287. This will not always be correct and so you are requested to confirm that, in the particular case under consideration, the value is acceptable.

Concrete strength –

In the original requirements based on research prior to the publication of SCI P287, the strength of the infill concrete was limited to C30. A wider range of strengths is permitted in SCI P287. You can now enter values other than C30 in the appropriate input dialogue although C30 is still the default value.

Transverse reinforcement –

Transverse reinforcement requirements are more detailed in SCI P287 and are generally more onerous. A fixed size and spacing appropriate to a particular unit was previously used. However, you now have full flexibility on these values so that you can specify size and spacing to suit the requirements of SCI P287 and the practical configuration of the particular manufacturer’s pc unit. The default is T16φ at 300 c/c.

Effective width of concrete flange –

In the original requirements based on research prior to the publication of SCI P287, the effective width was limited to 1.0 m and 0.5 m for internal and edge beams respectively. In SCI P287 the effective width is limited to span over a value with an upper limit of the width of infill concrete plus the gap.

For internal beams the effective width is generally limited to, for hollow core slabs - span/16 each side for solid pc slabs - span/8 each side

For edge beams the effective width is generally limited to, for hollow core slabs - span/16 plus a maximum 300 mm overhang for solid pc slabs - span/8 plus a maximum 300 mm overhang

In Fastrak Building Designer, an upper limit is placed on these values depending upon the proximity of adjacent beams.

You should consider whether the type of unit and the width of infill (depending upon the reinforcement detailing and the length of core ‘knocked out’) govern the upper limit on the concrete flange width. In all cases you should satisfy yourself that the effective width adopted by Fastrak is acceptable.

3. Effects on design

Construction stage, strength –

The major difference at the Construction Stage between Fastrak and SCI P287 is the requirement to check out-of-balance loading due to all units being placed from one side at a time. This is not currently incorporated in the software and so you are advised to carry out additional checks by hand.

Fastrak Composite Beam

Precast Concrete Slabs to SCI P287

Construction stage, deflections –

There is a requirement in SCI P287 to check ‘twist’ at the Construction Stage as well as deflection. This is not currently incorporated in the software and so you are advised to carry out additional checks by hand.

Composite stage, solid units –

In accordance with SCI P287, the composite moment capacity for beams using solid pc units should be based on a reduced depth of concrete. This is the overall depth including any topping less 25 mm when the unit has a nib. Otherwise the depth is limited to the depth of the topping only. In Fastrak the full depth of the solid unit plus topping is used making the moment capacity calculations inaccurate. You are advised to carry out additional checks by hand.

Composite stage, hollow core units –

For hollow core units, SCI P287 does not allow the plastic neutral axis to be within the concrete when full shear connection is achieved. You are advised to check the position of the plastic neutral axis from the results given in Fastrak and to take appropriate action.

Composite stage, longitudinal shear check –

Longitudinal shear is checked over two configurations of shear plane in SCI P287 – one vertically through the slab and one ‘up and over’ the studs. Only the former is checked in Fastrak. It is likely that the unchecked shear plane will be always more critical. You are advised to carry out additional checks by hand.

Alan J Rathbone CSC (UK) Ltd.

October 2004