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A DESIGN TOOL FOR

CIRCULAR HOLLOW SECTION (CHS) JOINTS

BACHELOR OF ENGINEERING

(CIVIL)

CHIONG LEE (4204123)

2011
Swinburne University of Technology (Sarawak Campus)

ABSTRACT

In designing steel structures, a design engineer will first needs to select a type of sections
used either open sections or hollow sections. Use of hollow sections offers wide range of
benefits. Hollow sections are however not very commonly used in this world. One of the
reasons is that the design of joints for hollow sections seems complicated than design of
joints for conventional open sections. Design tools are widely available for open sections
joints but only few simple design tools such as design graphs are available for hollow
sections joints. In order to ease and facilitate the process of designing and checking of hollow
sections joints, design tools must be created in the way that it saves time consumed for both
design and checking. This paper included the project conducted on creating a design tool for
hollow sections joints. The design tool was created using the Microsoft Office Excel
spreadsheet for different geometry of hollow section joints. This design tool can be used for
design in accordance with the Eurocode 3 only.

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ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

The author would like to express her sincere and special appreciation to Dr Ling Tong Wei
who had guided and supervised her throughout this project. This report would not have been
possible without the precious support, guidance and encouragement by him. It was such a
great pleasure and honour to carry out the project under his supervision. His willingness to
spare invaluable time and share his engineering knowledge will always be remembered.

The author also wishes to thank her partner of the project, Evelyn Chai Pei Tze for her
courage, understanding and tolerance throughout the research project.

And the author would like to thank her family and friends who physically and spiritually
support her whole project throughout the project.

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DECLARATION

I hereby declare that:

this thesis entitled A Design Tool for Circular Hollow Sections Joints contains no
materials which has been accepted for the award to the candidate of any other degree
or diploma, except where due reference is made in the text of examinable outcome;

to the best of the candidates knowledge contains no material previously published or


written by another person except where due reference is made in the text of the
examinable outcome; and

This report has not been previously or concurrently submitted for any other degree at
Swinburne University of Technology (Sarawak Campus).

________________

Name: Chiong Lee

Date: 30 May 2011

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TABLE OF CONTENTS

1.0 INTRODUCTION ...................................................................................................... 2

1.1 Background............................................................................................................. 2

1.2 Hypothesis .............................................................................................................. 5

1.3 Aim ........................................................................................................................ 5

1.4 Objectives ............................................................................................................... 5

1.5 Significance of the Research Project ....................................................................... 5

1.6 Scope of Study ........................................................................................................ 6

1.7 Source of Data and Method of Analysis .................................................................. 7

1.8 Ethical Consideration .............................................................................................. 7

2.0 LITERATURE REVIEW ........................................................................................... 1

2.1 Hollow Section Joints ............................................................................................. 1

2.2 Types of Joints ........................................................................................................ 2

2.2.1 Uniplanar Joints ............................................................................................... 2

2.2.2 Multiplanar Joints ............................................................................................ 4

2.3 Hollow Section Connections ................................................................................... 6

2.3.1 Welded Connections ........................................................................................ 6

2.3.2 Reinforced Joints ............................................................................................. 7

2.3.3 Bolted Connections .......................................................................................... 9

2.4 Design Considerations for Hollow Section Joints .................................................. 12

2.4.1 General Joints and Weld Considerations ........................................................ 12

2.4.2 Static Strength of Connections ....................................................................... 12

2.4.3 Design Procedures ......................................................................................... 14

2.4.4 Parameters Affecting Joint Resistance ............................................................ 15

2.4.5 Failure Modes for Hollow Sections Joints ...................................................... 16

2.5 The Existing Design Rules for Circular Hollow Sections Joints............................. 19

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2.5.1 Eurocode 3 ..................................................................................................... 19

2.5.2 CIDECT Design Guide .................................................................................. 20

2.5.3 Others Related Design Guides........................................................................ 20

2.6 Design Tools for Circular Hollow Section Joints ................................................... 22

2.6.1 SPACE GASS................................................................................................ 22

2.6.2 Finite Element Analysis Software .................................................................. 22

2.6.3 Microsoft Excel Spreadsheet .......................................................................... 24

3.0 METHODOLOGY ................................................................................................... 25

3.1 Design Tool: Microsoft Excel Spreadsheet ............................................................ 26

3.2 Section and Joint Properties .................................................................................. 32

3.2.1 Joint Validity Checks ..................................................................................... 33

3.2.2 Design Factors and Parameters....................................................................... 33

3.2.3 Assumptions Made Throughout the Design Process ....................................... 36

3.3 Static Strength of Circular Hollow Section Joint: Eurocode 3 (BSI 2005).............. 37

3.3.1 T And Y Joints ............................................................................................... 37

3.3.2 X Joints.......................................................................................................... 39

3.3.3 K And N Joints .............................................................................................. 40

3.3.4 KT Joints ....................................................................................................... 42

3.3.5 TT Joints........................................................................................................ 44

3.3.6 XX Joints ....................................................................................................... 44

3.3.7 KK Joints ....................................................................................................... 45

3.4 User Interaction of Design Tool ............................................................................ 46

3.4.1 Design Spreadsheets ...................................................................................... 46

3.4.2 Data input on the main page ........................................................................... 46

3.4.3 Result Summary............................................................................................. 47

3.4.4 Detailed Checking Calculations ..................................................................... 47

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3.5 Verification Worked Examples and Case Studies .................................................. 48

3.5.1 SHS Joint Worked Examples by Corus Tubes ................................................ 48

3.5.2 Design Handbook for RautaRuukki Structural Hollow Sections ..................... 49

3.5.3 Worked Examples for the Design of Steel Structures (BRE, SCI, Arup) ......... 49

4.0 Results and Discussions ............................................................................................ 51

4.1 Case 1: T Joint with Axial and Moment Loading................................................... 51

4.1.1 Input Data ...................................................................................................... 51

4.1.2 Results and Discussions ................................................................................. 52

4.2 Case 2: T Joint with Axial Loading ....................................................................... 55

4.2.1 Input Data ...................................................................................................... 55

4.2.2 Results and Discussions ................................................................................. 55

4.3 Case 3: X Joint with Axial Loading ....................................................................... 58

4.3.1 Input Data ...................................................................................................... 58

4.3.2 Results and Discussions ................................................................................. 58

4.4 Case 4: Gapped K Joint with Axial Loading .......................................................... 60

4.4.1 Input Data ...................................................................................................... 60

4.4.2 Results and Discussions ................................................................................. 61

4.5 Case 5: Overlapped K Joint with Axial Loading .................................................... 65

4.5.1 Input Data ...................................................................................................... 65

4.5.2 Results and Discussions ................................................................................. 66

4.6 Case 6: Gapped N Joint with Axial Loading .......................................................... 69

4.6.1 Input Data ...................................................................................................... 69

4.6.2 Results and Discussions ................................................................................. 70

4.7 KT Joint ................................................................................................................ 74

4.8 Multiplanar Joints ................................................................................................. 74

TT Joint....................................................................................................................... 74

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XX Joint ...................................................................................................................... 74

KK Joint ...................................................................................................................... 75

5.0 CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS..................................................... 77

6.0 REFERENCES ......................................................................................................... 79

7.0 APPENDICES........................................................................................................... A

Appendix A: Verification Worked Examples and Case Studies ........................................ A

Appendix A1: Case 1 - T Joint with Axial and Moment Loading ............................. A1-1

Appendix A2: Case 2 - T Joint with Axial Loading ................................................. A2-1

Appendix A3: Case 3 - X Joint with Axial Loading ................................................. A3-1

Appendix A4: Case 4 - Gapped K Joint with Axial Loading .................................... A4-1

Appendix A5: Case 5 - Overlapped K Joint with Axial Loading .............................. A5-1

Appendix A6: Case 6 - Gapped N Joint with Axial Loading .................................... A6-1

Appendix B: Design Spreadsheets .....................................................................................B

Appendix B1: Case 1 - T Joint with Axial and Moment Loading ............................. B1-1

Appendix B2: Case 2 - T Joint with Axial Loading .................................................. B2-1

Appendix B3: Case 3 - X Joint with Axial Loading ................................................. B3-1

Appendix B4: Case 4 - Gapped K Joint with Axial Loading .................................... B4-1

Appendix B5: Case 5 - Overlapped K Joint with Axial Loading .............................. B5-1

Appendix B6: Case 6 - Gapped N Joint with Axial Loading .................................... B6-1

Appendix B7: KT Joint............................................................................................ B7-1

Appendix B8: TT Joint ............................................................................................ B8-1

Appendix B9: XX Joint ........................................................................................... B9-1

Appendix B10: KK Joint ....................................................................................... B10-1

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LIST OF FIGURES

Figure 1-1: RHS .................................................................................................................... 2

Figure 1-2: CHS .................................................................................................................... 3

Figure 1-3: CHS as best shape subjected to wind, water and wave loading (Taken from
Wardenier 2001) ................................................................................................................... 3

Figure 1-4: Spanish Pavilion Shanghai Expo 2010 (Taken from Chantal 2010) ..................... 4

Figure 1-5: The highly curved structural facades support the roofs (Taken from Calzn et al.
2010) .................................................................................................................................... 4

Figure 2-1: T Joint ................................................................................................................ 3

Figure 2-2: X Joint ................................................................................................................ 3

Figure 2-3: Y Joint ................................................................................................................ 3

Figure 2-4: K Joint ................................................................................................................ 3

Figure 2-5: N Joint ................................................................................................................ 3

Figure 2-6: KT Joint .............................................................................................................. 3

Figure 2-7: TT Joint .............................................................................................................. 5

Figure 2-8: XX Joint ............................................................................................................. 5

Figure 2-9: KK Joint ............................................................................................................. 5

Figure 2-10: Butt (Groove) and Fillet Welds (Taken from Blodgett & Miller 1999) .............. 6

Figure 2-11: Weld Terminology (Taken from Blodgett & Miller 1999) ................................. 7

Figure 2-12: Full and partial penetration butt (groove) welds (Taken from Blodgett & Miller
1999) .................................................................................................................................... 7

Figure 2-13: Doubler and collar plate stiffened joints (Taken from Wardenier et al. 2008) .... 8

Figure 2-14: Grouted chords (Taken from Wardenier et al. 2008) .......................................... 8

Figure 2-15: Bolted CHS member (Taken and modified from Wardenier et al. 2008) ............ 9

Figure 2-16: Bolted end joints (Taken from Wardenier et al. 2008) ....................................... 9

Figure 2-17: Flange-plate Joints (Taken from Wardenier et al. 2008) .................................. 10

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Figure 2-18: Nailed joints (Taken from Wardenier et al. 2008) ............................................ 11

Figure 2-19: Load deformation diagram for a hollow section joint (Taken from UNI LJ n.d.)
........................................................................................................................................... 13

Figure 2-20: Main joint dimensional parameter for hollow section chords and brace members
(Taken from Rey 2007) ....................................................................................................... 15

Figure 2-21: Parameters affecting joint resistance (Taken from NUS 2005)......................... 15

Figure 2-22: Sample model of SPACE GASS (Taken from TumCivil 2000) ....................... 22

Figure 2-23: Sample model of Strand7 (Taken from Strand7 2011) ..................................... 23

Figure 2-24: Sample model of SAP2000 (Taken from Graphisoft n.d.) ................................ 23

Figure 2-25: Sample model of LUSAS (Taken from LUSAS 2010)..................................... 23

Figure 3-1: Chart of Methodology ....................................................................................... 25

Figure 3-2: Data Validation ................................................................................................. 28

Figure 3-3: Drop Down List in Spreadsheet......................................................................... 29

Figure 3-4: Conditional Formatting Options ........................................................................ 30

Figure 3-5: Conditional Formating Rules Manager .............................................................. 30

Figure 3-6: Conditional Formatting feature in Microsoft Excel ............................................ 31

Figure 3-7: Code used for macro ......................................................................................... 31

Figure 3-8: T or Y Joint (Taken from BSI 2005) ................................................................. 37

Figure 3-9: Chord face failure for in-plane moment (Taken from BSI 2005)........................ 38

Figure 3-10: Chord face failure for out-of-plane moment (Taken from BSI 2005) ............... 38

Figure 3-11: X joint (Taken from BSI 2005) ....................................................................... 39

Figure 3-12: Gapped K joint (Taken from BSI 2005) .......................................................... 40

Figure 3-13: Overlapped K joint (Taken from BSI 2005) .................................................... 41

Figure 3-14: KT joint (Taken from BSI 2005) ..................................................................... 42

Figure 3-15: TT Joint (Taken from BSI 2005) ..................................................................... 44

Figure 3-16: XX Joint (Taken from BSI 2005) .................................................................... 44

Figure 3-17: KK Joint (Taken from BSI 2005) .................................................................... 45

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Figure 3-18: Typical Data Input Table in Design Spreadsheets ............................................ 47

Figure 4-1: T joint under axial and moment loading - Case 1 (Taken from Oyj & Vainio
2000) .................................................................................................................................. 51

Figure 4-2: T joint under axial loading - Case 2 (Taken from Oyj & Vainio 2000) .............. 55

Figure 4-3: X joint under axial loading - Case 3 (Taken from Oyj & Vainio 2000) .............. 58

Figure 4-4: Gapped K joint under axial loading - Case 4 (Taken from Morris 2006) ............ 60

Figure 4-5: Definition of gap, g (Taken from BSI 2005) ...................................................... 62

Figure 4-6: Chord end load function for CHS joints (Taken from Corus Tubes 2005) .......... 63

Figure 4-7: Gap/lap function for CHS joints (Taken from Corus Tubes 2005) ..................... 64

Figure 4-8: Economics of Welded Joints (adapted from Whitfield & Morris 2009) ............. 64

Figure 4-9: Overlapped K joint under axial loading - Case 5 (Taken from Morris 2006) ...... 65

Figure 4-10: Definition of overlap ratio (Taken from BSI 2005) .......................................... 67

Figure 4-11: N joint under axial loading - Case 6 (Taken from BRE, SCI, Ove Arup &
Partners 1994) ..................................................................................................................... 69

Figure 4-12: Outline of 30m span truss (Taken from BRE, SCI, Ove Arup & Partners 1994)
........................................................................................................................................... 71

Figure 4-13: Influence of gap and overlap on eccentricity (modified from Whitfield & Morris
2009) .................................................................................................................................. 72

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LIST OF TABLES

Table 2-1: Failure modes for CHS joints (Recompiled from Oyj & Vainio 2000) ................ 17

Table 3-1: Excel Functions Used in Spreadsheet ................................................................. 26

Table 3-2: Sections and joint properties (BSI 2005)............................................................. 32

Table 3-3: Range of validity for welded joints between CHS chords and braces members
(T7.1 Eurocode 3-2005) ...................................................................................................... 33

Table 3-4: Design Factors and Parameters (BSI 2005) ......................................................... 34

Table 3-5: Type of joints and verification sources ............................................................... 50

Table 4-1: Data input for Case 1 .......................................................................................... 51

Table 4-2: Validity Check for Case 1 .................................................................................. 52

Table 4-3: Axial and Moment Resistance Check for Case 1................................................. 52

Table 4-4: Data input for Case 2 .......................................................................................... 55

Table 4-5: Axial Resistance Check for Case 2 ..................................................................... 55

Table 4-6: Data input for Case 3 .......................................................................................... 58

Table 4-7: Axial Resistance Check for Case 3 ..................................................................... 59

Table 4-8: Data input for Case 4 .......................................................................................... 60

Table 4-9: Validity Check for Case 4 .................................................................................. 61

Table 4-10: Axial Resistance Check for Case 4 ................................................................... 61

Table 4-11: Data input for Case 5 ........................................................................................ 65

Table 4-12: Validity Check for Case 5 ................................................................................ 66

Table 4-13: Axial Resistance Check for Case 5 ................................................................... 66

Table 4-14: Data input for Case 6 ........................................................................................ 69

Table 4-15: Validity Check for Case 6 ................................................................................ 70

Table 4-16: Axial Resistance Check for Case 6 ................................................................... 70

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LIST OF SYMBOLS AND ABBREVIATIONS

Abbreviations of Organizations

AISC American Institute of Steel Construction

API American Petroleum Institute

AWS American Welding Society

BRE Building Research Establishment

CIDECT Comit International pour le Dveloppement et ltude de la Construction


Tubulaire (International Committee for the Development and Study of Tubular
Structures)

IIW International Institute of Welding

SCI Steel Construction Institute

Other abbreviations

CHS circular hollow section

FEA finite element analysis

RHS rectangular or square hollow section

General Symbols

A cross-sectional area

Ag gross cross-sectional area of CHS

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Ai cross-sectional area of member i

An net cross-sectional area of CHS

Av shear area of the chord

di overall diameter of CHS member i (i = 0, 1, 2 or 3)

e noding eccentricity for a joint positive being towards the outside of the truss

E modulus of elasticity

fyi yield strength of member i (i = 0, 1, 2 or 3);

fy0 yield strength of a chord member;

g gap between the brace members in a K or N joint (negative values of g


represent an overlap q )

k factor defined in the relevant table, with subscript g, m, n or p

lc length of a collar plate

ld length of a doubler plate

M* moment or flexural resistance of a joint, expressed as a moment in the brace

Mip,i,Rd design value of the resistance of the joint, expressed in terms of the in-plane
internal moment in member i (i = 0, 1, 2 or 3);

Mip* design value of the in-plane internal moment in member i (i = 0, 1, 2 or 3);

Mop,i,Rd design value of the resistance of the joint, expressed in terms of the out-of-
plane internal moment in member i (i = 0, 1, 2 or 3);

Mop* design value of the out-of-plane internal moment in member i (i = 0, 1, 2 or 3);

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Mpl,i plastic moment capacity of member i

np ratio (p,Ed / fy0 ) / M5 (used for CHS chords)

N* axial force applied to member i (i = 0, 1, 2)

Ni,Rd design value of the resistance of the joint, expressed in terms of the internal
axial force in member i (i = 0, 1, 2 or 3)

Npl,Rd design plastic resistance to normal forces of the gross cross-section

p length of the projected contact area of the overlapping brace member onto the
face of the chord, in the absence of the overlapped brace member

q length of overlap, measured at the face of the chord, between the brace
members in a K or N joint, see Figure 1.3(b);

V shear force

Vpl,0 shear yield capacity of the chord

Vpl,Rd plastic design shear resistance

ratio of the mean diameter or width of the brace members, to that of the chord

ratio of the chord width or diameter to twice its wall thickness:

M partial safety factor for joint resistance

ov overlap ratio

correction factor accounting for multiplanar effect to be applied to uniplanar


joint strength

joint resistance (or capacity) factor (approximate inverse of M )

angle between the planes in a multiplanar joint.

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0,Ed maximum compressive stress in the chord at a joint;

p,Ed value of 0,Ed excluding the stress due to the components parallel to the chord
axis of the axial forces in the braces at that joint

i included angle between brace member i and the chord (i = 1, 2 or 3);

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INTRODUCTION HES 5108 RESEARCH PROJECT

1.0 INTRODUCTION

1.1 Background

The use of hollow structural sections (HSS) has extensively expanded over the years. HSS
are now broadly used as structural members in buildings, offshore structures, bridges, railway
stations, ports and other structures.

There are 2 types of HSS that are commonly used in structural construction. They are
Circular Hollow Sections (CHS) and Rectangular Hollow Sections (RHS) as shown in Figure
1-1 and Figure 1-2. There are many examples in nature that had proven the outstanding static
properties of the CHS as structural members (Wardenier 2001).

HSS is made from steel which can be fully recycled. This makes HSS sustainable material to
be used in structures. It has high quality surface finish and aesthetically pleasing. Thus, CHS
is always chosen to be used to design an architecturally attractive shape in a structure.

CHS are excellent in resisting compression, tension, bending and torsion. Due to their
properties of less resistance to air and water flow, CHS are proven to be the best shape
especially for structural members subjected to wind, water or wave loading as shown in
Figure 1-3 (Tata Steel 2010). They are less weight and yet stronger than other material such
as concrete. They are also cost effective if compared to other building materials.

Figure 1-1: RHS

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INTRODUCTION HES 5108 RESEARCH PROJECT

Figure 1-2: CHS

Figure 1-3: CHS as best shape subjected to wind, water and wave loading (Taken from Wardenier 2001)

Application of Hollow Sections

The application of hollow sections covers various fields due to its high aesthetic value and
high geometrical properties. Nowadays, architectural appearance becomes more important.
As hollow sections themselves has high aesthetic value, they are widely used in the
construction of building, halls, bridges, barriers, offshore structures as well as towers
(Wardenier 2001).

The hollow section joint designs are commonly applied in columns, uniplanar trusses,
multiplanar trusses, spaces structures and even composite structures (Wardenier 2001).
Hollow sections are mainly used for columns in buildings. As hollow sections are very
efficient in compression, they are suitable to design trusses either in uniplanar or multiplanar.
The members are usually welded directly to each other in hollow sections trusses. Besides,
HSS is widely utilized in space structures nowadays.

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INTRODUCTION HES 5108 RESEARCH PROJECT

A very recent example of superstructure that used CHS as its structural and architectural
elements is the Spanish Pavilion in Shanghai Expo 2010 as shown in Figure 1-4. It used CHS
in the highly curved structural faade supporting the roofs of exhibition rooms without any
inner columns as shown in Figure 1-5 (Calzn et al. 2010).

The hypothesis, aim, objectives and significance of this research project will be discussed
next.

Figure 1-4: Spanish Pavilion Shanghai Expo 2010 (Taken from Chantal 2010)

Figure 1-5: The highly curved structural facades support the roofs (Taken from Calzn et al. 2010)

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INTRODUCTION HES 5108 RESEARCH PROJECT

1.2 Hypothesis

Microsoft Excel Spreadsheet can be used to create a design tool in determining the static
design capacities of uniplanar and multiplanar joints in either hot finished or cold formed
circular hollow sections.

1.3 Aim

The main aim of this research project is to generate a design tool in order to determine the
static design capacities of uniplanar and multiplanar joints in steel CHS. Besides, the design
tool created should be able to design joints in either cold formed or hot finished CHS.

1.4 Objectives

1. To identify the kinds of design tools that can be used in designing and checking CHS
joints design.
2. To ensure that the design tool generated be able to design either cold formed or hot
finished CHS joints.
3. To apply the design rules and main features in Eurocode 3 related to CHS joints in the
design tool created.
4. To identify design checking procedures for static design capacities of uniplanar and
multiplanar joints in CHS in accordance with Eurocode 3- 2005.
5. To verify the design spreadsheets by comparing the result outcomes with case studies.
6. To review on the design assumptions and recommendations made by previous
researchers when designing the hollow section joints.

1.5 Significance of the Research Project

In the engineering design, a member design capacity is higher as compared to the design
capacity of a joint. Hence, a design is always limited by the joint capacity. Therefore,

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INTRODUCTION HES 5108 RESEARCH PROJECT

alternative needs to be developed. Members can be chosen according to its capacity as well as
the joints capacity.

Finite element software can be an alternative for the CHS joint designs. However, pre-study
and training are needed in order for a user to use it. The user needs to understand the theory
behind clearly and he should have own judgement in using the outcomes as the software will
gives outcome with any input. As Microsoft Excel is commonly used among engineers and
designers, it appears as a handy alternative to design hollow section joint. It saves time in all
the design stages including the preliminary and final design. It can also be used to create the
calculation report that suitable for immediate submission.

The design tool created for hollow section joint design will beneficial design engineers. This
will help to reduce the joint design time and ease the design checking, such as the adequacy
of joint capacities (resistances). Any decision made in design stage influences joint capacity,
fabrication and erection of a structure. By using design tool created, capacities of joints are
checked to be adequate. Consequently, design engineer can avoid time consumed for
repetitive works.

1.6 Scope of Study

This project is mainly focus on developing a design tool for both uniplanar and multiplanar
joints in CHS. The design in uniplanar joints includes K joint, KT joint, N joint, T joint, X
joint, and Y joint whereas the design in multiplanar joints includes KK joint, TT joint and XX
joint.

Alternative design tool such as software used for CHS joints will be reviewed. Analysis and
design will be conducted using Microsoft Excel Spreadsheets. Also, the analysis and design
will be conducted solely in accordance with Eurocode 3 - 2005: Design of steel structures.
However, other design guides will be reviewed. Failure modes of joints will be evaluated.
Only static analysis will be considered in this project.

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INTRODUCTION HES 5108 RESEARCH PROJECT

1.7 Source of Data and Method of Analysis

Research Strategy is essential in directing and conducting the process of research


systematically. The topic of study is first identified and developed. The topic chosen is A
Design Tool for Circular Hollow Section Joints. Background information of hollow section
joint is collected and then related sources are gathered. Literature of the hollow section joints
and its alternative design tool are reviewed. Microsoft Excel Spreadsheets are the main
computer application used to create design tool in order to achieve the aims of the study.
Primary data will be obtained from the spreadsheets for further interpretation and discussion.
There will be also researches done based on the work of other authors that source from the
library and online databases. The information obtained from journal papers, articles and
books are all secondary data. Next, the findings are evaluated. Besides, appropriate citation
is used to cite the findings of previous researchers.

1.8 Ethical Consideration

Engineering ethics are always linked to the design practices throughout design processes.
The main ethical issues involved in the context of engineering design are safety and
sustainability. Both safety and sustainability issues play important role in engineering
applications, planning and design. Safety is very crucial in any of the engineering designs. It
is important that a structure designed is safe by adopting safety factors and also complying
with the design rules. Adequacy checks need to be done in any cases to ensure the adequacy
of the design.

Material choosing is a concern in sustainable design. Steel is characteristically recyclable and


reusable. Its durability and quality make it a sustainable material and highly favoured. A
sustainable design is the design that could cater the needs of present as well as future
generation. So, it is essential to adopt suitability concept in any design. Most of the CHS
joints are welded joints. Welded joints will last longer if compared to bolted joints. Other
than that, welded joints will need less maintenance or repairs if they are well coated and
galvanised. Therefore, this will reduce the construction cost and also future maintenance cost.

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LITERATURE REVIEW HES 5108 RESEARCH PROJECT

2.0 LITERATURE REVIEW

2.1 Hollow Section Joints

According to Eurocode 3 - 2005, Joint refers to the region where two or more members are
interconnected. The main or through member of a joint is chord and brace is the member
attached to a chord (BSI 2005).

Unlike joints used in open sections such as I or H sections, joints in hollow sections are less
convenient for fitting plates and bolts. Therefore, welds are widely used for connecting
hollow sections. In other words, Circular Hollow Sections (CHS) joints are constructed by
welding the brace, onto the chord.

Welded joints hold the brace and chord member together as an integral part of the structure.
Therefore, the effectiveness of the joints greatly governs the success and stability of a
structure (Whitfield & Morris 2009). In the initial stage of design, the designer need to
determine the welded joint capacity based on the affecting parameters.

Factors that affect the capacity of the HSS are member sizes, steel grades as well as joint
geometry. Other than joint capacity, the fabrication and erection of the structure are main
concerns in designing a hollow sections joint. Sometimes, it can be too late to change section
size, grades or even the geometry for under-designed joint (Whitfield & Morris 2009). As the
member capacity at most of the time is larger than joint resistance (capacity), it is important
to take care of the joint capacity to avoid the case of under-designed joint which results in
inadequate design.

Therefore, adequate design considerations in any part of design processes will ensure a
technically safe, economically feasible and architecturally attractive structure.

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LITERATURE REVIEW HES 5108 RESEARCH PROJECT

2.2 Types of Joints

CHS joints are generally categorized based on their geometry configuration and loading
condition (NUS 2005). There are two main types of configurations in CHS joints. They are
uniplanar and multiplanar joints.

2.2.1 Uniplanar Joints

In uniplanar joints, the brace members are connected to the chord members on a single plane.
The chord and brace members lie in one plane for all the uniplanar joints. The common types
of uniplanar CHS joints include X joint, T joint, Y joint, N joint, K joint and KT joint. The
brace sections are welded to the surface of chord section. Figure 2-1 to Figure 2-6 show the
types of configuration of uniplanar joints in HSS.

The classification of hollow sections joints is based on the load transfer instead of the
appearance of the joint. T joint is a special case of Y joint. A joint is classified as X joint
when the normal force is transferred through chord members and equilibrated by a brace
member (Wardenier et al. 2008).

When the normal brace member is equilibrated by the chord member perpendicularly, the
joint is classified as T joint. The joint is categorized as Y joint when the brace member is not
connected to the chord member perpendicularly.

A K joint is the joint when normal brace members force is equilibrated by the other two brace
members on the same side. An N joint is considered as unusual type of K joint (Wardenier et
al. 2008). KT joint is combination of a K and a T joint on the same side of chord.

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Figure 2-1: T Joint Figure 2-2: X Joint

Figure 2-3: Y Joint Figure 2-4: K Joint

Figure 2-5: N Joint Figure 2-6: KT Joint

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By referring to EC3, the formula involved in designing both T and Y joints are same. So, the
design spreadsheet created can be combined and made in a flexible way. The design
spreadsheet will then usable for both T and Y joints. This applies to K and N joints as well.
The method of creating the design spreadsheets will be further explained in Section 0. K, N
and KT joints can be either gapped or overlapped. Overlap and gap joints behave in different
ways. Their capacities are affected by parameters respectively. The affecting parameters will
be further discussed in the Section 2.4.4.

2.2.2 Multiplanar Joints

In multiplanar joints, brace sections are connected to the chord sections in multiple planes.
Three large groups of multiplanar joints are XX joint, TT joint and KK joint. The Figure 2-7,
Figure 2-8, and Figure 2-9 show the configuration of the multiplanar joints. The ultimate
behaviours of multiplanar joints are similar to those of the uniplanar joints. A reduction
factor will be multiplied to the uniplanar joint capacity in order to obtain multiplanar joint
capacity (BSI 2005).

The reduction factor used for TT joints is 1.0 (BSI 2005). Mitri et al. (1987) carried out tests
on TT joint with a 90o between both braces that are loaded in compression. The finding
shows that the joint resistance (capacity) did not vary significantly. The multiplanar effects
are most significant for XX joints as shown in Figure 2-8.

CIDECT (2008) stated that the FEA had proven that the multiplanar loading has a significant
effect on the strength or the resistance (capacity) as compared to a uniplanar X joint. In the
case of load acting in one plane with same magnitude as those in other plane in opposite
loading sense (compression and tension), the joint resistance could drop around 1/3 of a
uniplanar X joint. In contrast, when the loading are in the same sense, the joint strength will
increase. This phenomenon was captured and will be further discussed in Section 4.0. These
will be applied into the design spreadsheets when creating design spreadsheets for
multiplanar joints. CIDECT (2008) suggested reduction factor of 1.0 for KK joints instead of
0.9 in EC3 (2005). To be conservative, the reduction factor of 0.9 is adopted for the design
speadsheet for KK joint since the design tool is created solely in accordance with EC3
(2005).

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Figure 2-7: TT Joint

Figure 2-8: XX Joint

Figure 2-9: KK Joint

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2.3 Hollow Section Connections

2.3.1 Welded Connections

Welding is the only joining method that creates a truly one-piece member. All the
components can efficiently and effectively transfer loads from one piece to another in welded
joint (Blodgett & Miller 1999).

2.3.1.1 Welding Types

Corus (2005) suggested that the weld for tubular joints should generally be made around the
whole border or circumference of the brace section using butt (groove) weld, fillet weld or
combination of the two. The Figure 2-10 shows the illustration of butt and fillet welds.

Figure 2-10: Butt (Groove) and Fillet Welds (Taken from Blodgett & Miller 1999)

Fillet welds have a triangular cross section. They are normally applied directly onto the
surface of materials they join as show in Figure 2-10. The leg size as shown in Figure 2-11
indicates the size of a fillet weld.

Another common weld used for tubular joints is butt weld or also called as groove weld.
Figure 2-12 shows the two types of butt weld, full penetration and partial penetration butt
welds. Full penetration butt welds have a throat dimension which is equal to the thickness of
the surface or section they are joined with (Blodgett & Miller 1999). On the other hand,
partial penetration butt weld has a throat dimension which is less than the thickness of the
material they join. Welded connections are used in CHS joints as welding offers many
benefits over bolting. Welded joints directly transfer stress between members. Without gusset
plate or splice in bolted joints, the weight of the joint is minimal. Fillet weld are more
commonly used as it is convenient and requires less erection as well as preparation of edge.

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The design tool created assumed that all the CHS joints are welded joints with sufficient
design resistance (capacity) of welds.

Figure 2-11: Weld Terminology (Taken from Blodgett & Miller 1999)

Figure 2-12: Full and partial penetration butt (groove) welds (Taken from Blodgett & Miller 1999)

2.3.2 Reinforced Joints

In order to improve the joint capacity, different reinforcing methods have been introduced in
engineering practices (Shao et al. 2010). The reinforced joints have higher ultimate capacity
toward resistant and higher stiffness. Besides, reinforcement is also applied for the
enhancement of under-dimensioned joints (Shao et al. 2010).

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Two types of reinforcing methods are inner reinforcement and outer reinforcement.
Stiffeners are placed inside the chord for inner reinforcement. The examples are ring
stiffeners (Lee & Llewelyn-Parry, 2004; Lee & Llewelyn-Parry, 2005) and inner plate
reinforcement (Shao et al., 2009).

On the opposite side, stiffeners are placed outside the chord for outer reinforcement. The
examples are doubler-plate (Hoon et al., 2001; Fung et al., 1999) and collar plate
reinforcement (Choo et al., 2005). Figure 2-13 shows the illustration of doubler and collar
plate stiffened joints.

In addition, grouting (Wardenier et al. 2008) can be another of reinforcement in tubular joints
as shown in Figure 2-14. Grouting of joints is used to improve the static capacity of CHS
joints and increase the joint rigidity. However, the grouted could add weight in the joint.
More future research need to be carried out to determine whether the added static capacity
would overweigh the weight added onto the joint or not. The design spreadsheets created will
not cater for a grouted joint.

Figure 2-13: Doubler and collar plate stiffened joints (Taken from Wardenier et al. 2008)

Figure 2-14: Grouted chords (Taken from Wardenier et al. 2008)

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2.3.3 Bolted Connections

2.3.3.1 Bolted Types

According to CIDECT Design Guide (2008), plates, forks, T sections or cut-outs of I sections
are welded to the CHS member as shown in Figure 2-15 and Figure 2-16. Besides, slotted
gusset plate and flattened bolted end joints are also commonly used for bolted hollow section
joints.

Figure 2-15: Bolted CHS member (Taken and modified from Wardenier et al. 2008)

Figure 2-16: Bolted end joints (Taken from Wardenier et al. 2008)

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Flange-plate Joints

A flange-plate joint as shown in Figure 2-17 is one type of the joints with bolts in tension.
Many researches were conducted based on this kind of bolted joint. Conventionally, limit
states for this joint are yield of end plate, welded strength, as well as tensile strength of bolts.
Prying action is involved in this joint as well.

Figure 2-17: Flange-plate Joints (Taken from Wardenier et al. 2008)

Nailed Joints

Another bolted joint that can be used in CHS is nailed joint where CHS will be nailed
together. The nails are arranged in such a way that they are symmetrically around the
circumference of the section as shown in Figure 2-18. Alternatively, tubular collar can be
used to connect both sections with same outer diameter (Wardenier et al. 2008).

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Figure 2-18: Nailed joints (Taken from Wardenier et al. 2008)

Recommendations for bolted CHS joints are not provided in the codes. However, the design
and checking might still have to comply in the normal method according to the possible
failure modes. Shear, stress and failure net cross sectional area are the important parameters
in the bolted connection design as they affect the bolted joint capacity. However, since
welded connection are more commonly used in CHS joints, bolted connection is not
considered in the design tool created for CHS joints.

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2.4 Design Considerations for Hollow Section Joints

2.4.1 General Joints and Weld Considerations

There were some reviews done on the general joint considerations stated in CIDECT Design
Guide 1. Some of the critical considerations will affect the joint efficiency.

Wardenier et al. (2008) suggested that the chords should normally have a thicker wall. This
is important as a thicker wall has higher stiffness which helps in resisting loads from brace
sections. This is relevant because the formulae for the joint axial resistance are always
multiply by the square for chord thickness. This will results in higher joint resistance as the
diameter to thickness ratios decrease. On the other hand, a large thin section is more suitable
for a compression chord to resist buckling. However, this will always compromise with the
joint strength and as a result stocky sections will need to be chosen.

A thin wall is appropriate for a brace member except for overlap joints. According to
Wardenier et al. (2008), as the ratio of brace wall thickness to chord wall thickness increases,
the joint resistance increases. It is valid because the ratio of chord wall thickness to brace
wall thickness is correlation to the joint resistance (capacity).

In order to provide ease way in welding, it is suggested that CHS brace have smaller width as
compared to the chord members, especially for joint at the saddle of chord member
(Wardenier et al. 2008). Besides, gapped joints are more preferred for K and N joints as this
ease the process of preparation, fit and weld (Wardenier et al. 2008).

The suggestions on joints considerations will be further verified using the design tool created.
The outcomes will be discussed in the Section 4.0.

2.4.2 Static Strength of Connections

Investigation on the loading strengths of welded hollow section joints of different types were
done by previous researchers. The loading types can be axial tension, compression, in-plane
and out-of-plane bending or their combinations.

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Figure 2-19: Load deformation diagram for a hollow section joint (Taken from UNI LJ n.d.)

The Figure 2-19 shows the load deformation diagram of a hollow section joint loading in
tension and compression. The static strength of hollow section joint can be characterized by
few criteria according to its deformation. The criteria are ultimate load-bearing resistance,
deformation limit and crack initiation. The ultimate load capacity is thus the prior criteria to
be met in determining the static strength of a joint.

Previous research had found out that the present ultimate strength equation based on each
connection tests exactly forecast the capacity of connection when trusses are loaded under
static loads (Kurobane 2002). The connections reach their ultimate loads in either wall
plastification failure or brace local buckling (Kurobane 2002).

There are 2 failure modes that are critical in the CHS joints. There are chord face failure and
punching shear failure. Eventually, joint strength is governed by chord face failure
(plastification) as it has lesser resistance as compared to punching shear in CHS joints. This
will be proven in the Section 4.0.

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2.4.3 Design Procedures

The static design procedures can be simplified into 3 general steps. First, the design member
forces in brace and chord need to be determined.

Then, the next step is to determine the design resistance of the joint (Zhao et al. 2010).
Design rules from structural codes can be adopted for the design for joints.

Then the final step is to apply the design criteria to assess whether the joint is sufficient or
not. By comparing the design action and design resistance, the joint is assessed (Zhao et al.
2010). Their failure modes are considered in this stage. Failure modes are to be discussed in
section 2.4.5.

Minimum value fulfilling these criteria will be the design resistance of the joint. For
multiplanar joints, it is essential to consider the correction factors together with the design
criteria in relevant plane of uniplanar joints (Zhao et al. 2010).

These general procedures will be adopted in the process of creating and verifying (the design
spreadsheet for each uniplanar and multiplanar joint in Section 0 and 4.0 respectively. The
design member forces in brace and chord are obtained from the case studies. This design tool
is created in accordance with the Eurocode 3 2005. The geometry validity of the joint is
first checked. The strength of the joint is then determined by getting the least resistance
(capacity) of failure modes involved. A joint is considered sufficient or adequate when the
design action is lesser than that of design resistance. This means the joint is able to resist and
cater the design loading acting on it.

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2.4.4 Parameters Affecting Joint Resistance

Figure 2-20: Main joint dimensional parameter for hollow section chords and brace members
(Taken from Rey 2007)

Figure 2-21: Parameters affecting joint resistance (Taken from NUS 2005)

The non-dimensional parameters affecting the joint capacity and resistance are illustrated in
Figure 2-21. The ratio of the mean diameter or width of the brace members to the chord
(refer Figure 2-20), , can be used to determine the possible load paths under varies loading
circumstances (NUS 2005). When increase, the joint resistance will increase also as
discussed in Section 2.4.1.

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The ratio of the chord diameter to twice its wall thickness, , donates the resistance of chord
wall due to bending, shearing and membrane action. The joint resistance will increase when
this parameter is reduced.

Both of these parameters are involved in calculating the joint resistance (capacity) in the
design spreadsheets. Besides these 2 parameters, the bracing angle, will also influence the
joint capacity in the way that when getting smaller, the capacity of the joint increases
significantly. This will be further discussed in Section 4.0.

The gap, g is the gap between brace members in a K or N joint as shown in Figure 2-20 and
Figure 2-21. Gap will substantially influence a factor in joint resistance, kg. Large gap results
in eccentricity and secondary bending. However, these effects will be eliminated in joint
design if the intersection of the centre lines of the brace members are within the validity
range. Usually, gap connections are more preferable as compared to overlap connections. The
reason is that it is easier to prepare, fit and weld brace members onto a chord member.
Minimal gap of summation of thickness chord and brace members need to be provided. More
information on gap, overlap and eccentricities will be discussed in the Section 4.0 (Case 4, 5
and 6).

2.4.5 Failure Modes for Hollow Sections Joints

As mentioned in the EC3 (2005), there are generally six failure modes that affect the design
of joint resistance between CHS and of connection between CHS. The failure modes due to
axial loading and bending moment are shown in the Table 2-1 with its illustration as
applicable.

When the joint satisfied the validity checks, the critical failure modes are recognized for each
load and type of joint. The non-critical modes are not necessary in order to reduce volume of
work in calculations. On the other hand, the non-critical failure modes might become critical
when the joint parameters do not satisfy the validity checks.

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Table 2-1: Failure modes for CHS joints (Recompiled from Oyj & Vainio 2000)

Failure modes Descriptions

Brace
Plastic failure of the chord
face (plastification).
a) Chord face failure

Chord

Brace
Yielding, crushing or
instability (crippling or
b) Chord side wall failure buckling of the chord side
wall or chord web) due to
compression.

Chord

Brace

c) Chord shear failure


Shearing between chord and
brace member.

Chord

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Brace
Crack initiation and leads to
d) Chord punching shear
rupture of brace members
failure
through the chord member.

Chord

Cracking in the welds or in Brace


the brace members.
e) Brace failure with
reduced effective width Due to insufficient brace
cross sectional area that
leads to overload.
Chord

Brace

Chord
Failure of either brace or
Chord local buckling
f) Chord or brace Local chord member at the joint
buckling failure location. Due to non-uniform Brace
stress distribution.

Chord

Brace local buckling

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2.5 The Existing Design Rules for Circular Hollow Sections Joints

There are various standards and design guides that are available worldwide for the design of
steel structures. However, there are only parts of the standards and design guides contain the
design of hollow section joint under static loading.

2.5.1 Eurocode 3

The European Standard or simply called as Eurocode has now gradually superseding other
design codes in the design and construction sectors of Civil and Structures in many parts of
this world. European Standard, Eurocode 3 is the eurocode used for the design of steel
structures. It covers the design of buildings and most of the civil engineering works in steel.

Hollow Sections Joints

The Chapter 7 of the EC3, hollow section joints was reviewed. This chapter provide design
rule used for both uniplanar and multiplanar CHS joints. Failure modes for CHS joints are
reviewed and discussion Section 2.4.5.

Range Of Validity

Range of validity for welded joints between CHS brace members and CHS chords was
reviewed. For joints within the range of validity provided in Table 7.1 in EC3, only chord
face failure and punching shear need to be taken into consideration. Range of validity will be
further elaborated and discussion in Section 3.2.1 as well as Section 4.0.

Design Resistances

Design rules for uniplanar joints are stated in the EC3. Formulae are provided for design axial
resistances of welded joints between CHS. Other than that, the EC3 also gives details on the
design resistance moment of welded joints between CHS brace members and CHS chords.

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There are also design rules provided on the multiplanar CHS joints. Reduction factors for
multiplanar joints such as TT, XX, and KK joints are listed together with its criteria
respectively. The reduction factors used were briefly discussed in Section 2.2.2.

The minimum value for chord face failure and punching shear should be taken as design
resistance. The design resistance will then be used to compare with the design action forces
or moments in a joint. The joint is considered adequate when the design action is less than
that of its resistance (capacity).

2.5.2 CIDECT Design Guide

Other than the EC3, the design guides published by CIDECT was reviewed. CIDECT,
Comit International pour le Dveloppement et ltude de la Construction Tubulaire stand for
International Committee for the Development and Study of Tubular Structures. It is an
international association of hollow section manufacturers based in Geneva. The committees
do research on the application of hollow section worldwide.

Committees of CIDECT had summarized the current state-of-the-art of this field in their
publication. CIDECT Design Guides 1 and 3 are based on the IIW sub commission XV-E
design recommendation which focus of the static strength of tubular joints (Packer 2000).
CIDECT Design Guide 1 covers the designs for circular hollow section (CHS) joints under
predominantly static loading. This design guide includes the statically loaded, welded and
bolted CHS connection in accordance with the IIW recommendations. Some of the
recommendations were discussed in Section 2.4 and some will be included in Section 4.0 as
well.

2.5.3 Others Related Design Guides

The CISC had also published design guides for onshore tubular structures by expanding the
present information available from CIDECT and IIW and integrating it to the Canadian
standards (Packer 2000). In USA, the designs of hollow sections joints are conformed to the
American Welding Society (AWS). The connection static design rules of CHS are based on
American Petroleum Institute (API) rules for offshore structures. In the later state, the

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American Institute of Steel Construction (AISC) published a specification for the design of
HSS (Packer 2000).

Although the Australia Standards (AS) covers most of the design rules for steel structures, it
is limited to the hollow sections joints design. However, AS4100 does cover the member
design of hollow section. British Standards Institution (BS 6235) Code of practice for fixed
offshore structures covers the design of hollow section joints for offshore structures (Dale
2005).

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2.6 Design Tools for Circular Hollow Section Joints

2.6.1 SPACE GASS

SPACE GASS is a commonly used for structural analysis and design program especially in
2D and 3D frames, trusses, grillages and beams (SPACEGASS 2011). It has the features of
design ranging from small beams, trusses to large high rise buildings as shown in Figure
2-22. However, the hollow section joint design is not included in this program.

Figure 2-22: Sample model of SPACE GASS (Taken from TumCivil 2000)

2.6.2 Finite Element Analysis Software

The use of finite element analysis (FEA) packages is one of the important factors that boost
the development of hollow sections joints studies since the late 1980s (Kurobane 2002). FE
has the advantage of stimulating actual behaviour of connections up to failure based provided
there is a numerical model which is well calibrated against experimental results (Rahman
2005).

The FE analysis has the advantage that it can model complicated geometry especially in
multiplanar joint designs. It can also analyse non-linear behaviour related to high deformation
and nonlinear material (Rahman 2005). Everything has its pros and cons, so as the FE
analysis. A professional is needed in order to model the exact situation into the FE software
(Rahman 2005). FE analysis gives output for any input of or model. So the designer should
have own judgment to interpret the result obtained from FE analysis. The Figure 2-23, Figure
2-24, Figure 2-25 shows examples of FE analysis software. There are STRAND7, SAP2000,
and LUSAS.

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Figure 2-23: Sample model of Strand7 (Taken from Strand7 2011)

Figure 2-24: Sample model of SAP2000 (Taken from Graphisoft n.d.)

Figure 2-25: Sample model of LUSAS (Taken from LUSAS 2010)

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2.6.3 Microsoft Excel Spreadsheet

Microsoft excel is one of the tools can be used for structural design. There are many
examples that excel can be a very useful and unique tool to be used in structural design. The
functions of storing, manipulating and graphing data make it a very useful spreadsheet
application (Lemoine 2011).

Microsoft Excel allows custom macros and Visual Basic add-ons for users with specific
needs and programming experiences (Lemoine 2011). Instead of getting some complicated
and costly software, Microsoft excel can be chosen as a design tool in structural design. It is
cost effective as almost every engineering firm has Microsoft Excel. Most of the engineers
are familiar with the standard interface in Excel. Excel is easy to be used and there are helpful
wizards to guide new users through complex processes.

Lemoine (2011) found that Microsoft excel has extraordinary large amount of data storage.
Users can store up to 1 million rows by 16,000 columns. He also added that PivotTables is
one of the great features in Excel where it assists user in getting the outcome in a fast, easy
and accurate way. The conditional formatting features enable user to create the calculation in
the form of report so that it can be directly printed as calculation reports when the checking is
done. This save time as paperwork is always time consuming.

Also, the user do no need to worried that the receiver cannot open or access the file as
Microsoft Excel is very commonly used in this world. Even different versions of excel files
are compatible with each other. Nowadays, Excel spreadsheets can be inserted or imported
within various popular applications. This makes Excel even more useful and flexible. Hence,
Microsoft Excel is chosen as the design tool for hollow sections joints in this project.

The method of analysis using Microsoft excel spreadsheets is further discussed in Section 0.

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3.0 METHODOLOGY

The methodology used to achieve the objectives of the research study on the design tool of
hollow sections joints is discussed in this chapter. The design tool was designed in
accordance with the Eurocode 3 (BS EN 1993 1-8: 2005). Study was done on the Eurocode 3
for the design rules and the principle used for CHS joints design. Different types of Circular
Hollow Sections (CHS) joints are then analyse and applied in the design tool. The Microsoft
Excel spreadsheet is chosen as the main design tool of the CHS joints. The findings are then
further verified with chosen worked examples and case studies in Section 4.0. Next,
discussions are done by comparing the outcomes of comparison between design spreadsheets
and case studies in Section 4.0 also. The following Figure 3-1 shows the flow of the
methodology of the project.

Research on the structural design standards for circular hollow section joints.

Familiar with the design rules and principle in the Eurocode.

Conduct design analysis for circular hollow section joints of different types.

Create design spreadsheets in Microsoft Excel for design of circular hollow section joints.

Compare the findings from design spreadaheets with case studies chosen.

Discuss the outcomes of comparison between design spreadsheets and case studies.

Conclude the outcome and recommend future works based on the result outcomes.

Figure 3-1: Chart of Methodology

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3.1 Design Tool: Microsoft Excel Spreadsheet

As mentioned earlier, the main design tool used for the design of CHS joints was Microsoft
Excel Spreadsheet. The design was done solely based on the EC3. Different types of
functions and features of Microsoft Excel were used in the creation of the spreadsheet for
CHS joints design. The Table 3-1 shows the function used throughout the design analysis in
the spreadsheet with its descriptions and examples.

Table 3-1: Excel Functions Used in Spreadsheet

Excel Functions Description

Abs Gives the absolute value of a number

E.g. Abs (-150) will give the outcome of 150. This is usually
used to obtain magnitude of force as it can be negative (tension).

And Returns TRUE if all conditions are TRUE. It returns FALSE if


any of the conditions are FALSE.

E.g. And ( Cell A=OK, Cell B=OK) will give the outcome
of TRUE if both cells display OK or FALSE otherwise.

FALSE Returns a logical value FALSE.

If Returns one value if a specified condition evaluates to TRUE, or


another value if it evaluates to FALSE.

E.g. If (RATIO>1, NOT OK, OK) will give the outcome of


NOT OK is the cell RATIO is greater than 1 or OK otherwise.

Match Searches for a value in an array and returns the relative position
of that item.

E.g. Match (Area, B1:P1, 0) will give the relative positive of


Area in the array B1:P1 exactly.

Max Gives the maximum value in a group of argument.

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E.g. Max (1.0, 0.9, 0.8) will give 1.0 as 1.0 is maximum value
among all.

Min Gives the minimum value in a group of argument.

E.g. Max (1.0, 0.9, 0.8) will give 0.8 as 0.8 is maximum value
among all.

Or Returns TRUE if any of the conditions are TRUE. Otherwise, it


returns FALSE.

E.g. Or ( Cell A=INVALID, Cell B=INVALID) will give


the outcome of TRUE if any of Cell A or B display INVALID or
FALSE otherwise.

PI Returns the value of pi ().

Round Provides arithmetic rounding for a value.

E.g. Round (0.1102, 2) will give the outcome of 0.11 by


rounding 0.1102 to 2 decimal places.

SIN Returns the sine of a number (in radians).

E.g. SIN (1.0) will give the outcome of 0.84 which is the sine of
angle 1.0 radians.

TRUE Returns a logical value TRUE.

Vlookup Searches for the value in the left-most column of table_array


and returns the value in the same row based on the
index_number.

E.g. VLookup( Cell A, B1:P100, 2,FALSE ) will pick up the


number in column 2 of the B1:P100 array corresponding to Cell
A exactly.

& Returns the combination of value or text before and after &

E.g. CHS & 219.5x12.5 will give CHS 219.5x12.5.

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The functions mentioned were used in different ways in different combinations to give better
flexibility in the design spreadsheets. Besides, array formula was used in creating the design
spreasheets. Usually, Enter key can be used to get the outcome of formula used in a
particular cell. For array formula, users need to hold down the Ctrl and the Shift keys and
then press Enter to obtain the outcome of a particular cell.

Besides the functions stated in Table 3-1, there were also other features used to enhance the
flexibility of the design tool.

In the Microsoft Excel, variables can be changed in a convenient way using the drop down
list. The user can directly choose the options from the drop down list without the need of
typing in the variables. This will ease the data input as errors might occur while typing in the
exact input manually and this may cause misinterpretations.

The drop down lists was created using the Data Validation under the Data ribbon in the
Microsoft Excel. Under the Validation criteria, List was allowed and the Source is the
content of the Drop down list. User can also insert command in the Source in order to
conditionally choose the content of drop down list based on the commands as shown in
Figure 3-2.

Figure 3-2: Data Validation

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The Figure 3-3 shows the examples of the use of drop down list created for the types of CHS
used for the CHS joints design. Other than section size, the section type and grade also have
drop down list with different section and grade respectively.

Figure 3-3: Drop Down List in Spreadsheet

Other than that, another useful feature used in the spreadsheet was the Conditional
Formatting feature. It enables the authors to easily highlight the important cells and stress on
unusual values using Data Bars, Icon Scale and Icon sets based on criteria set. This feature is
especially important to emphasize the outcome or the findings of the spreadsheet. Under the
Home ribbon, the Conditional Formatting tab consists of some typical options of formatting
as shown in Figure 3-4. Multiple rules can be applied onto a same cell for few possibilities of
outcomes. The Figure 3-5 shows the conditional formatting rules manager where user can
manage the rules created using Conditional Formatting.

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METHODOLOGY HES 5108 RESEARCH PROJECT

Figure 3-4: Conditional Formatting Options

Figure 3-5: Conditional Formating Rules Manager

The Figure 3-6 shows the use of the conditional formatting showing the result summary of
the spreadsheet and emphasize on the interesting cells using different colours.

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METHODOLOGY HES 5108 RESEARCH PROJECT

Figure 3-6: Conditional Formatting feature in Microsoft Excel

Besides that, simple macro had been inserted into to the design spreadsheet. It was used to
automatically clear the content when corresponding cells variable is changed. The example
of the code used is shown in the Figure 3-7.

Figure 3-7: Code used for macro

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3.2 Section and Joint Properties

The properties listed in the Table 3-2 will be used in validity check and also in determining
the joint strength.

Table 3-2: Sections and joint properties (BSI 2005)

Properties Explanations

d0 is the diameter of a chord member

di [i=1,2,3] is the diameter of a brace members

t0 is the thickness of a chord member

ti [i=1,2,3] is the thickness of a brace members

A is the cross sectional area of a section

is the angle between a chord and a brace member

is the angle between planes in multiplanar joint

fy0 is the yield strength of a chord member

fyi [i=1,2,3] is the yield strength of brace members

N* is the design internal axial force in a member

Ni,Rd [i=0,1,2,3] is the design value of the resistance of the joint which is expressed in
terms of the internal axial force in a member

Mip* is the design in-plane moment in a member

Mip* is the design out-of-plane moment in a member

Mip,i,Rd is the design resistance of the resistance of the joint which expressed in
[i=0,1,2,3] internal in-plane moment in a member

Mop,i,Rd is the design resistance of the resistance of the joint which expressed in
[i=0,1,2,3] internal out-of-plane moment in a member

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3.2.1 Joint Validity Checks

The design of the CHS joints is valid provided that the geometry of the joints is within the
range of validity given in the Table 3-3. As long as the joints are within the range of validity,
only chord face failure and punching shear need to be considered in the joint design. As for
the joints outside the range of validity as shown in Table 3-3, all the failure modes for hollow
section joints need to be assessed. Also, the secondary moments in the joints which caused by
their rotational stiffness should be considered as well (BSI 2005). Failure to check validity
limits will often results in section sizes requiring changing at stage of fabrications. Thus, it is
important for simple initial checks to keep all the sections chosen for chord and brace
member within the validity range.

Table 3-3: Range of validity for welded joints between CHS chords and braces members (T7.1 Eurocode
3-2005)

0.2 di/d0 1.0


Class 2 and 10 d0/t0 50 generally
But 10 d0/t0 40 for X joints
Class 2 and 10 di/ti 50
ov 25%
g t1 + t 2
(-0.55)d0 e 0.25d0

3.2.2 Design Factors and Parameters

The factors and parameters used in calculating the design capacities (resistance) of CHS
joints are shown in Table 3-4.

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Table 3-4: Design Factors and Parameters (BSI 2005)

Factors and
Explanations
Parameter

M5 is the partial safety factor for resistance of joints in hollow section lattice
girder. It is taken as 1.0 for the design spreadsheet.

is the ratio of the chord diameter to twice of its wall thickness where the
formula is,

is the ratio of the mean diameter of the brace member to that if the chord

1.0 For T, Y and X joints,

2.0 For K and N joints,

3.0 For K and N joints:

g is the gap between brace members at the face of the chord.

p is the projected contact area length between the overlapping brace and the
chord member without considering the overlapped member.

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q is the overlap length between brace members

ov is the overlap ratio

k Factor of k in the subscript of g and p are used especially in calculating the


design resistance of the chord face failure.

kg is the gap/lap factor.

( )
( *

kp is the CHS end load factor.

For np>0 (compression) : but kp1.0

For np0 (tension):

where np is the stress ratio used for CHS chords,

is the value of (maximum compressive stress in the chord)


excluding the stress due to the members parallel to the chord axis of the
axial forces in the braces at that particular joint. can be found using the
formula below.

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METHODOLOGY HES 5108 RESEARCH PROJECT

where .

( is the maximum compressive force in the chord of a joint)

3.2.3 Assumptions Made Throughout the Design Process

The following assumptions were made throughout the project:

1. The design spreadsheet for CHS joints was created in accordance with EC3.
2. The design tool is valid both for hot finished CHS and cold formed CHS.
3. The internal forces and moments are assumed to be in equilibrium
4. Each member in the joint was capable of resisting the internal forces and moments.

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3.3 Static Strength of Circular Hollow Section Joint: Eurocode 3 (BSI 2005)

3.3.1 T And Y Joints

Figure 3-8: T or Y Joint (Taken from BSI 2005)

3.3.1.1 Design Axial Resistance

Check 1: Chord face failure

( )
Eqn 3-1

Check 2: Punching shear failure [i = 1, 2 or 3]

When di d0 - 2t0:

Eqn 3-2

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3.3.1.2 Design Moment Resistance

Check 3: Chord face failure (In-plane Moment)

Figure 3-9: Chord face failure for in-plane moment (Taken from BSI 2005)

Eqn 3-3

Check 4: Chord face failure (Out-of-plane Moment)

Figure 3-10: Chord face failure for out-of-plane moment (Taken from BSI 2005)

Eqn 3-4

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Check 5: Punching shear failure

When d1 d0 2t0:

Eqn 3-5

Eqn 3-6

3.3.2 X Joints

Figure 3-11: X joint (Taken from BSI 2005)

3.3.2.1 Design Axial Resistance

Check 1: Chord face failure

Eqn 3-7

Check 2: Punching shear failure [i = 1, 2 or 3]

Refer Eqn 3-2.

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3.3.2.2 Design Moment Resistance

Check 3: Chord face failure (In-plane Moment)

Refer Eqn 3-3.

Check 4: Chord face failure (Out-of-plane Moment)

Refer Eqn 3-4.

Check 5: Punching shear failure

Refer Eqn 3-5and Eqn 3-6.

3.3.3 K And N Joints

3.3.3.1 Gap Joints

Design Axial Resistance

Figure 3-12: Gapped K joint (Taken from BSI 2005)

Check 1: Chord face failure

Eqn 3-8

Eqn 3-9

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Check 2: Punching shear failure

Refer Eqn 3-2.

Design Moment Resistance

Check 3: Chord face failure (Out-of-plane Moment)

Refer Eqn 3-4.

Check 4: Punching shear failure

Refer Eqn 3-6.

3.3.3.2 Overlap Joints

Figure 3-13: Overlapped K joint (Taken from BSI 2005)

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Design Axial Resistance

Check 1: Chord face failure

Refer Eqn 3-8 and Eqn 3-9.

Design Moment Resistance

Check 2: Chord face failure (Out-of-plane moment)

Refer Eqn 3-4.

3.3.4 KT Joints

Figure 3-14: KT joint (Taken from BSI 2005)

3.3.4.1 Design Axial Resistance

Check 1: Chord face failure

Refer Eqn 3-8 and Eqn 3-9.

Members 1 and 3 are here in compression and member 2 is here in tension

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where N1,Rd in Eqn 3-8 is the value of N1,Rd for a K joint but with replaced by:

Check 2: Punching shear failure [i = 1, 2 or 3]

Refer Eqn 3-2.

3.3.4.2 Design Moment Resistance

Check 3: Chord face failure (Out-of-plane moment)

Refer Eqn 3-4.

Check 4: Punching shear failure

Refer Eqn 3-6.

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3.3.5 TT Joints

TT joint with 60 90where member 1 may be either tension or compression.

Figure 3-15: TT Joint (Taken from BSI 2005)

Appropriate reduction factor was applied in the design resistance for each relevant plane of
the multiplanar joint. The design resistance for each relevant plane of multiplanar joint should
satisfy the design criteria after using the reduced design resistances. The reduction factor for
TT joints,

Eqn 3-10

3.3.6 XX Joints

Figure 3-16: XX Joint (Taken from BSI 2005)

Brace members 1 and 2 can be either in compression or tension. N2,Ed/N1,Ed shall be negative
if one member is in tension and another in compression.

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The reduction factor for TT joints,

Eqn 3-11

The sign of N1,Ed and N2,Ed need to be considered at all the time and fulfil |N2,Ed| |N1,Ed|.

3.3.7 KK Joints

Figure 3-17: KK Joint (Taken from BSI 2005)

Member 1 in KK joint is always in compression and member 2 is always in tension. For the
KK joint with the angle between relevant planes, 60 90, the reduction factor, shall
be 0.9 with the condition that it fulfils the expression below in a gapped joint.

[ ] [ ] Eqn 3-12

For a joint that subject to combined bending and axial force, the brace member should fulfill
the Eqn 3-13.

[ ] Eqn 3-13

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3.4 User Interaction of Design Tool

3.4.1 Design Spreadsheets

There were 7 design spreadsheets created to design different geometry of CHS joints. Some
of joints that shared the same procedure were combined together. For example, T and Y
joints as well as K and N joints. The 7 spreadsheets created are as follows:

1. T and Y Joints
2. X Joints
3. K and N Joints
4. KT Joints
5. TT Joints
6. XX Joints
7. KK Joints

3.4.2 Data input on the main page

Users need to input the design data in the data input cells provided. Firstly, user needs to
choose the type of steel used for members. The user will then need to choose the grade of the
section used before they can choose the section size for chord and braces members. The angle
between chord and braces members, needs to be inserted for each brace. Axial forces, N*
acting on the joint for each members need to be clearly identified. Positive forces represent
compression and negatives forces represent tension forces. The user will need to identify the
moment (if any) either in-plane moment, Mip*or out-of-plane moment, Mop*. The partial
factor for hollow section is stated as 1.0 in the Eurocode 3, Table 2.1 (BSI 2005). Detailed
joint information such as the brace member gap (g), projected length (p), overlap length (q)
and eccentricity (e) are then inserted if applicable as shown in Figure 3-18.

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Figure 3-18: Typical Data Input Table in Design Spreadsheets

3.4.3 Result Summary

The result summary on the main page will show up the summarized results for the joint. The
summary will either show up VALID, INVALID, OK, NOT OK or N/A for the checks as
shown in Figure 3-6 earlier. The consequence pages show the detailed calculation of the joint
if user wanted to look into it in case of failure (INVALID or NOT OK). In the detailed
calculation part, Section 3 in design spreadsheets shows the section properties based on the
sections chosen earlier. Sample of design spreadsheets can be found in Appendix B.

3.4.4 Detailed Checking Calculations

Section 4 in the design spreadsheets (validity checks) examines on the geometry limits of the
joint in order to comply with the formulae provided in the Eurocode. The checks include
diameters ratio (di/d0), diameter and thickness ratio (d0/t0, di/ti), the angles between chord and
braces (), the overlap ratio, ov, g and eccentricity (e).

Section 5 in design spreadsheets shows the all the parameters and factors involved in the joint
capacity (resistance) checking. When the design passes all the validity checks, the design
check continues with checking on the axial resistance as well as moment resistance (if any) of
the joint in section 6 and 7 respectively in design spreadsheets. Utilization ratio is used to
compare the design capacity and resistance of the joint. The check will only appear as OK

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METHODOLOGY HES 5108 RESEARCH PROJECT

when the utilization ratio is less than 1. The same applies for moment resistance checks.
Chord face failure check is check for both axial and moment resistance. Punching shear
failure check is checked based on its failure criteria. Otherwise, it will appear as N/A which
represents that the punching shear is not critical in that particular joint. Refer Appendix B for
the sample of design spreadsheet created for each CHS joints.

3.5 Verification Worked Examples and Case Studies

3.5.1 SHS Joint Worked Examples by Corus Tubes

Corus is a subsidiary of Tata Steel, one of the world leading steel tube producers that produce
hot finished and cold formed structural hollow sections production for over 25 years (Tata
Steel 2011). Corus supply a range of branded tubes named Celcius 355, Hybox 355 and
Strongbox 235 (Tata Steel 2011). Corus are actively supporting design engineers through this
transition period by publishing steel building guidance documentation. One of the design
guidance provided is worked examples on hollow sections joints.

This design of structural hollow sections joints examples included the examples for both CHS
and RHS joints design and checking. For CHS joints, worked examples on both gap and
overlap K joints can be found. Verification was done based on the scenario provided in the
worked example. Values were inserted into the design tool created to compare the outcome
from the design tool and from the worked examples. The worked examples examined on the
parameter limits and then the failure modes of CHS joints. Chord face deformation and chord
punching shear failure were checked to ensure the adequacy of joint capacity. Compression
and tension member were identified for calculation of joint capacity.

In this worked example, brace 1 usually designated compression and brace 2 was under
tension. Corus used two methods in finding the gap or lap function f (g) or kg in Eurocode
and also the CHS chord end load function f (np) or kp in Eurocode. The two method used
were using formulae and using graph. The formulae used were identical with formulae
provided in Eurocode. The functions and factors were obtained using graphs according to the
related parameters. The least calculated joint capacity for each brace was dictated by failures
respectively.

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3.5.2 Design Handbook for RautaRuukki Structural Hollow Sections

Verification was done based on the worked examples extracted from the Design Handbook
for Rautaruuki Structural Hollow Sections (Oyj & Vainio 2000). The design handbook
provided design guides in accordance with the Eurocode 3. The examples were presented in a
similar way as Corus worked examples. Design examples on CHS T-joints subjected to
bending was shown in the handbook. Besides, there were also examples of the T or Y joints,
and X joints. The gap or lap factor,kg and also the CHS chord end load factor, kp were
calculated using formulae in accordance with Eurocode 3. However, there is a minor
difference where this design handbook adopted partial factor for resistance of cross-sections,
M0 as 1.1. This could be due to the earlier version of Eurocode they were adopting.

3.5.3 Worked Examples for the Design of Steel Structures (BRE, SCI, Arup)

The worked examples included in this publication were design guide of the design of steel
structures based on Eurocode 3. This was a publication done by the Building Research
Establishment, BRE, the Steel Construction Institute, SCI and Ove Arup & Partners. BRE is
the principal organization in the UK which carries out researches on technical aspects of
building and other forms of construction related (BRE, SCI, Ove Arup & Partners 1994). SCI
is an institute that aims to promote the proper and effective use of steel in construction while
Ove Arup & Partners is an international firm that offer broad range of design and specialist
services for the structure construction industry. This publication was first published in year
1994 and it provided a wide range of design worked examples for steel structures.

One of the worked examples that related to CHS joints was the design of 30m span roof truss.
This example covered the design of single-span roof trusses at 9-m centres. This example
showed the design of the truss by angles and tees as well as using hollow sections. The front
part of this example shows the member design of the truss. The steps are then followed by
checking the efficiency of the joint.

Members labelled with 6, 7, 11 and 12 in Figure 4-11 of Case 6 in Section 4.6 formed a
gapped K joint with 12mm gap and other details as shown in the figure. The author first
checked the joint geometry to ensure that the geometry limitations are fulfilled. The author
checked the member capacities before started on checking the joint capacity. In the joint

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METHODOLOGY HES 5108 RESEARCH PROJECT

capacity checking, the author examined the chord plastification and punching shear failure of
the N joint for both compression(member 12) and tension( member 11) members. The author
considered the joint strength as the least value of the chord plastification and the punching
shear values.

Table 3-5 shows the summary of all the verification case studies and their sources.

Table 3-5: Type of joints and verification sources

Type of Type of
Case Joints Loading Verification Source

Axial and Design Handbook for RautaRuukki Structural


1 T joints Moment Hollow Sections (Oyj & Vainio 2000)

Design Handbook for RautaRuukki Structural


2 T joints Axial Hollow Sections (Oyj & Vainio 2000)

Design Handbook for RautaRuukki Structural


3 X joints Axial Hollow Sections (Oyj & Vainio 2000)

Gapped K SHS Joints Worked Example by Corus Tubes


4 Joints Axial (Morris 2006)

Overlapped K SHS Joints Worked Example by Corus Tubes


5 Joints Axial (Morris 2006)

Gapped N Worked Examples for the Design of Steel Structures


6 Joints Axial (BRE, SCI & Arup 1994)

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RESULTS AND DISCUSSIONS HES 5108 RESEARCH PROJECT

4.0 RESULTS AND DISCUSSIONS


The spreadsheets for Circular Hollow Section (CHS) T and Y Joints, X Joints, and K and
N Joints created were verified by comparing the results with the case studies when identical
scenario was applied. There are six cases with different scenarios used for verification of the
spreadsheet in order to ensure the accuracy of the design spreadsheets.

4.1 Case 1: T Joint with Axial and Moment Loading

T Joint with Axial and Moment Loading based on the Design Handbook for RautaRuukki
Structural Hollow Sections (Oyj & Vainio 2000)

Figure 4-1: T joint under axial and moment loading - Case 1 (Taken from Oyj & Vainio 2000)

4.1.1 Input Data

Table 4-1: Data input for Case 1

Chord Brace 1
Data Design Design
RautaRuuki RautaRuuki
Spreadsheet Spreadsheet
Section Size CHS219.1 x5 CHS219.1 x5
Grade S 355 S 355
Chord and brace angle, () - 90
Axial Force, N* (kN) 273 70
In-plane Moment, Mip*
(kNm) - 30

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RESULTS AND DISCUSSIONS HES 5108 RESEARCH PROJECT

4.1.2 Results and Discussions

Validity Check

Table 4-2: Validity Check for Case 1

Check RautaRuuki Design Spreadsheet


di/d0 - VALID
d0/t0 - VALID
di/ti - VALID
- VALID

Axial and Moment Resistance Check

Table 4-3: Axial and Moment Resistance Check for Case 1

Brace 1
RautaRuuki Design Spreadsheet
Axial Resistance Check Capacity Forces Forces
Ratio Ratio
(kN) (kN)
Joint Capacity,
Chord Face Failure Check N1,Rd 230 0.30 (OK) 256 0.28 (OK )
Punching Shear Failure Joint Capacity,
Check N1,Rd N/A N/A N/A N/A
Brace 1
RautaRuuki Design Spreadsheet
Moment Resistance Check Capacity Moment Moment
Ratio Ratio
(kNm) (kNm)
Joint Capacity, 0.80
Chord Face Failure Check Mip,Rd 36 (OK) 40 0.74 (OK )
Punching Shear Failure Joint Capacity,
Check Mop,Rd N/A N/A N/A N/A

Discussion

This worked example adopted the same section for both the chord and brace members as
shown in Table 4-1. It is a pure T joint as the angle between chord and brace is 90. The joint
members are loaded with axial forces and bending as shown in Figure 4-1. Both members are

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RESULTS AND DISCUSSIONS HES 5108 RESEARCH PROJECT

loaded in compressive axial loading. Detailed information on this worked example can be
found in Appendix A1 whereas full design calculation set of spreadsheet can be found in
Appendix B1. Validity check was carried out and the joint reached the ultimate loads either
by chord face failure or punching shear failure as shown in Appendix B1.

Since the diameter of brace member (d1) greater than subtraction of diameter of chord with
two times of chord thickness (d0 2t0), the chord punching shear did not be taken into
consideration for calculating both axial and bending resistance. Hence, N/A was shown for
part involving punching shear calculation.

Design resistance of a joint is the maximum or ultimate design axial or moment resistance for
brace members. In most of the case, a joint is considered sufficient provided that all brace
members have greater design capacity (resistance) if compared to design forces acting onto
the joint. The utilization ratio had been calculated for all the brace members involved.
Utilization ratio is the ratio of design action (loadings act onto the joint) and its joint design
capacity (resistance). This ratio shows the amount of capacity utilized by a joint in this
context. Hence, whenever it is less than 1.0, a joint is not critical and said to be sufficient.
When the ratio exceeds 1.0, the joint is not able to resist and cater the loading acted on the
joint. Thus, the design of the joint is failed.

The result showed that all utilization ratios were less than 1.0 as shown in Table 4-3. Thus,
the design of joint was sufficient. From the comparison, the design spreadsheet gave a higher
value of joint capacity for both axial and moment resistance checks. This is due to the
difference in the partial safety factors used for resistance of joints in hollow section lattices.
The partial safety factor used in the design example is slightly different with the partial safety
factor used in design spreadsheet. The partial safety factor used in design example is

whereas the partial safety factor used in the design spreadsheet is . Both of the partial

safety factors for Class 1, 2 and 3 cross-sections, M0 and partial safety factor for resistance of
joints in hollow section lattices are adopted as 1.1. This could be due to use of earlier version
of EC3. This made the expression of to and hence gives 0.909. On the other hand,

the design spreadsheet adopted the partial safety factors for joints in hollow section lattice
girder M5 as 1.0 (Table 2.1 EC3). Hence, the outcomes of design spreadsheet will always be
slightly greater if compared to values in the worked example provided by Oyj & Vainio

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RESULTS AND DISCUSSIONS HES 5108 RESEARCH PROJECT

(2000). The partial safety factor will affect in finding the CHS chord end load factor, np. The
np obtained will then affect the kp factor and hence lowered the joint capacity (resistance).
This shows that the design code adopted by Oyj & Vainio in this design is more conservative
as compared to the Eurocode 3 2005 adopted by design spreadsheets.

For connection subjected to both axial and bending, the brace member connections subject to
combined bending and axial force should fulfill the Eqn 3-13. From the design spreadsheet,
the value obtained for Eqn 3-13 is 0.82 which was less than 1.0. So, the combined bending
and axial force is not critical in this case.

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RESULTS AND DISCUSSIONS HES 5108 RESEARCH PROJECT

4.2 Case 2: T Joint with Axial Loading

T Joint with Axial Loading based on the Design Handbook for RautaRuukki Structural
Hollow Sections (Oyj & Vainio 2000)

Figure 4-2: T joint under axial loading - Case 2 (Taken from Oyj & Vainio 2000)

4.2.1 Input Data

Table 4-4: Data input for Case 2

Chord Brace 1
Data Design Design
RautaRuuki RautaRuuki
Spreadsheet Spreadsheet
Section Size CHS219.1 x10 CHS168.3 x5
Grade S 355 S 355
Chord and brace angle, () - 90
Axial Force, N* (kN) 1018.2 450

4.2.2 Results and Discussions

Validity Check

The Validity Check is similar to Table 4-2 in Case 1.

Axial Resistance Check

Table 4-5: Axial Resistance Check for Case 2

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RESULTS AND DISCUSSIONS HES 5108 RESEARCH PROJECT

Brace 1
RautaRuuki Design Spreadsheet
Check Capacity Forces Forces
Ratio Ratio
(kN) (kN)
Chord Face Failure Check Joint Capacity, N1,Rd 462 0.97 (OK) 520 0.87 (OK )
Punching Shear Failure Check Joint Capacity, N1,Rd 985 0.46 (OK) 1087 0.42 (OK )

Discussion

A similar way of verification had been done for a T joint which is loaded under axial only.
The section used for chord and brace members are different in this case. The brace member
was smaller than the chord member used as illustrated in Figure 4-2. Both members were
loaded under compressive forces. Detailed information on this worked example can be found
in Appendix A2 whereas full design calculation set of spreadsheet can be found in Appendix
B2.

This joint passes all the range of validity as shown in Table 4-3. Hence, only chord face
failure and punching shear failure needed to be considered. Both chord face failure and
punching shear checks were carried out for this joint. As the diameter of brace member (d1) is
less than subtraction of diameter of chord with two times of chord thickness (d0 2t0), the
chord punching shear need to be taken into consideration in determining axial resistance.
Axial resistance in this case is governed by the chord face failure as it gave lower resistance
as compared to punching shear. The result showed that all utilization ratios were less than
1.0. Thus, the design of joint was sufficient.

From comparisons in Table 4-5, joint capacity (resistance) obtained by Oyj & Vainio was
again lower than the resistance calculated in design spreadsheet. This was due to the same
reasons as explained in Case 1. Since the outcomes agreed well each other, T and Y Joints
spreadsheet was verified.

By comparing Case 1 and Case 2, the results showed that reduce in the chord width to
thickness ratio () gave an increase in the joint capacity. Case 1 with high value (21.9) had
the joint capacity (resistance) of 256kN only. In contrast, Case 2 with low value (11.0) had
the joint capacity (resistance) of 520kN which was almost double of joint capacity in Case 1.

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RESULTS AND DISCUSSIONS HES 5108 RESEARCH PROJECT

Therefore, it is more recommended to adopt a smaller, thicker chord to gives a low value as
mentioned in Section 2.4.4 earlier on.

Testing was done by altering the input for this design spread using a smaller diameter brace
with a larger diameter chord to give a smaller bracing diameter to chord diameter ratio ().
The outcome of the testing showed that larger value (Case 2) resulted in higher joint
capacity. Therefore, it was more recommended to adopt a larger diameter section for brace
and smaller diameter for chord to gives a higher value for a higher joint capacity.

Besides, the bracing angle, also affected capacity of a joint. Case 2 showed a pure T joint
with =90o. As mentioned in Section 2.4.4, smaller bracing angle will results in higher joint
capacity (resistance). By changing the bracing angle into say 30o, the joint became a Y joint
instead of the T joint. The capacity increased dramatically from 520kN to 1150kN. The
capacity was increasing when the bracing angle was decreasing. This could be due to the
reason that the net force acting onto the joint as compared to those acting normal to the chord.

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RESULTS AND DISCUSSIONS HES 5108 RESEARCH PROJECT

4.3 Case 3: X Joint with Axial Loading

X Joint with Axial Loading based on the Design Handbook for RautaRuukki Structural
Hollow Sections (Oyj & Vainio 2000)

Figure 4-3: X joint under axial loading - Case 3 (Taken from Oyj & Vainio 2000)

4.3.1 Input Data

Table 4-6: Data input for Case 3

Chord Brace 1
Data Design Design
RautaRuuki RautaRuuki
Spreadsheet Spreadsheet
Section Size CHS219.1 x10 CHS193.7 x6.3
Grade S 355 S 355
Chord and brace angle, () - 90
Axial Force, N* (kN) 1018.2 450

4.3.2 Results and Discussions

Validity Check

The Validity Check is similar to Table 4-2 in Case 1.

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RESULTS AND DISCUSSIONS HES 5108 RESEARCH PROJECT

Axial Resistance Check

Table 4-7: Axial Resistance Check for Case 3

Brace 1
RautaRuuki Design Spreadsheet
Check Capacity Forces Forces
Ratio Ratio
(kN) (kN)
Joint Capacity, 0.96
467 528 0.85 (OK )
Chord Face Failure Check N1,Rd (OK)
Punching Shear Failure Joint Capacity, 0.40
1134 1247 0.36 (OK )
Check N1,Rd (OK)

Discussion

This example worked on an axial loaded X joint. The angle between its chord and member is
90 and both members are in compression as illustrated in Figure 4-3. The size of the section
used for chord and brace were different. Detailed information on this worked example can be
found in Appendix A3 whereas full design calculation set of spreadsheet can be found in
Appendix B3.

As the joint geometry passed all the relevant validity check (refer Table 4-3), only chord face
and punching shear failure needed to be considered. There was need to check on punching
shear failure for this case as well because the diameter of brace member (d1) is less than
subtraction of diameter of chord with two times of chord thickness (d0 2t0). Chord face
failure again governed the axial resistance as it has lower value as compared to punching
shear.

The result showed that all utilization ratios were less than 1.0 as shown in Table 4-7. Thus,
the design of joint was sufficient. Same reasons apply for this case for getting a different joint
resistance for worked examples and design spreadsheet. Hence, this case had verified the X
Joint spreadsheet.

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RESULTS AND DISCUSSIONS HES 5108 RESEARCH PROJECT

Testing was done by altering the input in this design spreadsheet. Lower value and higher
value both gave high joint capacity (resistance) as discussed in Case 2. A smaller bracing
angle, resulted in a high joint capacity as well.

4.4 Case 4: Gapped K Joint with Axial Loading

Gapped K Joint with Axial Loading based on the SHS Joints Worked Example by Corus
Tubes (Morris 2006)

Figure 4-4: Gapped K joint under axial loading - Case 4 (Taken from Morris 2006)

4.4.1 Input Data

Table 4-8: Data input for Case 4

Chord Brace 1 Brace 2


Data
Design Design Design
Corus Corus Corus
Spreadsheet Spreadsheet Spreadsheet
Section Size CHS219.1 x12.5 CHS139.7 x5 CHS114.3 x3.6
Grade S 355 S 355 S 355
Chord and brace angle,
- 45 45
()
Axial Force, N* (kN) 1636 500 -400
Brace member gap, g
40
(mm)

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RESULTS AND DISCUSSIONS HES 5108 RESEARCH PROJECT

4.4.2 Results and Discussions

Validity Check

Table 4-9: Validity Check for Case 4

Check Corus Design Spreadsheet


di/d0 PASS VALID
d0/t0 PASS VALID
di/ti PASS VALID
PASS VALID
g PASS VALID

Axial Resistance Check

Table 4-10: Axial Resistance Check for Case 4

Brace 1 Brace 2
Design Design
Corus Corus
Spreadsheet Spreadsheet
Check Capacity
Forces Forces Forces Forces
Ratio Ratio Ratio Ratio
(kN) (kN) (kN) (kN)
Joint
0.51 0.51 0.41 0.41
Chord Face Capacity, 986 986 986 986
(OK) (OK ) (OK) (OK )
Failure Check N1,Rd
Joint
0.18 0.18 0.18 0.18
Punching Shear Capacity, 1919 1919 1570 1570
(OK) (OK ) (OK) (OK )
Failure Check N1,Rd

Discussion

In this case, the worked example was done by the Morris, Corus Tubes (2006). This worked
example illustrated an example of gapped K joint under axial loading (Figure 4-4). The
section used for chord and braces were different with each other. The chord and brace 1 was
loaded under compressive loading while brace 2 was under tension. The chord and brace
angle, are 45. No eccentricity found in this example. Detailed information on this worked

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RESULTS AND DISCUSSIONS HES 5108 RESEARCH PROJECT

example can be found in Appendix A4 whereas full design calculation set of spreadsheet can
be found in Appendix B4.

The gap between brace members, g must be greater than the sum of thickness for both chord
and brace member to ease the welding of brace members onto chord members. The gap
between brace members, g was defined as shown in the Figure 4-5.

Figure 4-5: Definition of gap, g (Taken from BSI 2005)

This worked example showed a clear and precise parameter limits check. The parameters all
passed the limit (validity) checks in both worked example by Morris and the design
spreadsheet. The joint reached the ultimate loads either by chord face failure or punching
shear failure as all the parameters were within the validity range.

All utilization ratios obtained were less than 1.0. Thus, the design of joint was adequate.
Comparison was done on the axial resistance calculated for both sides; Morriss worked
example and the design spreadsheet. The axial resistances calculated for chord face failure in
both braces are lesser than punching shear and hence it governs the axial resistance in this
case again. The axial resistance by chord face failure and punching shear for both sides are
totally identical. In this worked example, the author has shown two method of finding the gap
or lap function, kg and the CHS chord end load function, kp. The first method was using the
formulae provided in EC3 -2005. The second method used was using graph as shown in
Figure 4-6 and Figure 4-7. Both methods turned out to have a same value for factor of kg and
kp. Joint capacity dictated by chord face failure for both bracings as the capacity calculated

62
RESULTS AND DISCUSSIONS HES 5108 RESEARCH PROJECT

are both lower than punching shear capacity (resistance). Hence, it can be said that chord
face failure is more critical than punching shear failure at most of the time.

A gap joint are generally preferable to an overlap joint. The reason is that the braces are
easier to prepare, fit, and weld onto its chord. This will result in an economic fabrication as it
is easier and cheaper to assemble the joint as shown in Figure 4-8. Simple fillet weld can be
used around the full circumference of CHS as long as there is sufficient gap or clearance
between brace members. Nevertheless, gapped joint may results in eccentricity. The
eccentricity issue will be further discussed in Case 5 and 6 as this case did not show
eccentricity.

Figure 4-6: Chord end load function for CHS joints (Taken from Corus Tubes 2005)

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RESULTS AND DISCUSSIONS HES 5108 RESEARCH PROJECT

Figure 4-7: Gap/lap function for CHS joints (Taken from Corus Tubes 2005)

Figure 4-8: Economics of Welded Joints (adapted from Whitfield & Morris 2009)

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RESULTS AND DISCUSSIONS HES 5108 RESEARCH PROJECT

4.5 Case 5: Overlapped K Joint with Axial Loading

Overlapped K Joint with Axial Loading based on the SHS Joints Worked Example by Corus
Tubes (Morris 2006)

Figure 4-9: Overlapped K joint under axial loading - Case 5 (Taken from Morris 2006)

4.5.1 Input Data

Table 4-11: Data input for Case 5

Chord Brace 1 Brace 2


Data Design Design Design
Corus Corus Corus
Spreadsheet Spreadsheet Spreadsheet
Section Size CHS219.1 x12.5 CHS139.7 x5 CHS114.3 x3.6
Grade S 355 S 355 S 355
Chord and brace
- 45 45
angle, ()
Axial Force, N* (kN) 1636 500 -400
Projected length, p
161.64
(mm)
Overlap length, q
45
(mm)
Eccentricity, e (mm) -42.2

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RESULTS AND DISCUSSIONS HES 5108 RESEARCH PROJECT

4.5.2 Results and Discussions

Validity Check

Table 4-12: Validity Check for Case 5

Check Corus Design Spreadsheet


di/d0 PASS VALID
d0/t0 PASS VALID
di/ti PASS VALID
PASS VALID
ov PASS VALID
Eccentricity, e PASS VALID

Axial Resistance Check

Table 4-13: Axial Resistance Check for Case 5

Brace 1 Brace 2
Design Design
Corus Corus
Check Capacity Spreadsheet Spreadsheet
Forces Forces Forces Forces
Ratio Ratio Ratio Ratio
(kN) (kN) (kN) (kN)
Joint
Chord Face 0.44 0.44 0.35 0.35
Capacity, 1134 1133 1134 1133
Failure Check (OK) (OK ) (OK) (OK )
N1,Rd
Punching Joint
Shear Failure Capacity, N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A
Check N1,Rd

Discussion

This case showed the scenario of an overlapped K joint under axial loading. The geometry of
the joint was very similar with Case 4 except that it was an overlapped K joint and it was a
gapped K joint in Case 4. Besides this difference, there was negative eccentricity (e) of
42.2mm in this overlapped K joint as illustrated in Figure 4-9 . Negative eccentricity can be
defined as shown in Figure 4-13(c). Detailed information on this worked example can be

66
RESULTS AND DISCUSSIONS HES 5108 RESEARCH PROJECT

found in Appendix A5 whereas full design calculation set of spreadsheet can be found in
Appendix B5.

The eccentricity needed to be checked so that it is within the range of validity. The
eccentricity was within the range of (-0.55) d0 e 0.25d0. Therefore, moment due to joint
eccentricity was not considered in this joint. Detailed information on eccentricity will be
discussed in Case 6. The validity check for all the parameter limits were checked in both
worked example and design spreadsheet. Besides eccentricity, the overlap ratio (ov) for
overlap joint was checked. It was calculated by taking the ratio percentage between overlap
length (q) and projected length (p), . The overlap length, q and projected

length, p can be found by referring the Figure 4-10. The overlap ratio should not greater than
25% in order to avoid other failure mode such as brace local buckling failure modes as the
formulae provided were cater for chord face failure and punching shear failure only.

Figure 4-10: Definition of overlap ratio (Taken from BSI 2005)

The result presented that all utilization ratios were less than 1.0 as shown in Table 4-13.
Consequently, the design of joint was adequate. Chord punching shear check was not
required for overlapped joints and therefore the joint capacity is governed by chord face
failure for both braces.

By comparing Case 4 and 5, the sections size used are identical. However, capacities for both
cases were different. Case 5, overlap K joint had a higher joint capacity although the sections
used are identical with Case 4. Thus, a

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RESULTS AND DISCUSSIONS HES 5108 RESEARCH PROJECT

By altering the input used in the design tool, the strength of the overlap K joint increased as
overlap increased. This was due to the load transfer from overlapping brace to overlapped
brace and hence fewer loads acting onto the joint and hence resulted in increased joint
capacity (resistance). In the case when the overlap ratio is greater than the validity limit, the
local buckling of the compression brace could become more critical. And therefore, the two
failure modes, chord face failure and brace local buckling failure modes will interact with
each other and dictate the joint capacity (resistance).

However, fabrication costs for 100% overlap joints is less than that of the partial overlap
joints as shown in Figure 4-8. This could be due to preparation of edges of welding in partial
overlap joints are complicated than the 100% overlap joints.

Reducing chord diameter to thickness ratio (), increasing brace diameter to chord diameter
ratio (), and reducing bracing angle () were valid in increasing joint capacity for overlap K
joint as well. Besides, there were some other recommendations that could be applied on
overlap joint to increase joint capacity. A smaller, thicker with higher yield strength
overlapped brace could be adopted. Other than that, a thicker with higher yield strength chord
compared to the overlapped bracing could help in increasing joint capacity as well.

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RESULTS AND DISCUSSIONS HES 5108 RESEARCH PROJECT

4.6 Case 6: Gapped N Joint with Axial Loading

Gapped N Joint with Axial Loading based on the Worked Examples for the Design of Steel
Structures (BRE, SCI & Arup 1994)

Figure 4-11: N joint under axial loading - Case 6 (Taken from BRE, SCI, Ove Arup & Partners 1994)

4.6.1 Input Data

Table 4-14: Data input for Case 6

Chord Brace 1 Brace 2


Data Design Design Design
Arup Arup Arup
Spreadsheet Spreadsheet Spreadsheet
Section Size CHS193.7 x8 CHS114.3 x5 CHS88.9 x5
Grade S 275 S 275 S 275
Chord and brace
- 37.8 90
angle, ()
Axial Force, N* (kN) -258 -323 194
Brace member gap, g
12
(mm)
Eccentricity, e (mm) 39

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RESULTS AND DISCUSSIONS HES 5108 RESEARCH PROJECT

4.6.2 Results and Discussions

Validity Check

Table 4-15: Validity Check for Case 6

Check Arup Design Spreadsheet


di/d0 SATISFACTORY VALID
d0/t0 SATISFACTORY VALID
di/ti SATISFACTORY VALID
- VALID
g - VALID
Eccentricity, e - VALID

Axial Resistance Check

Table 4-16: Axial Resistance Check for Case 6

Brace 1 Brace 2
Design Design
Arup Arup
Spreadsheet Spreadsheet
Check Capacity
Forces Forces Forces Forces
Ratio Ratio Ratio Ratio
(kN) (kN) (kN) (kN)
Chord Face Joint
0.63 0.67 0.99 0.66
Failure Capacity, 517 483 197 296
(OK) (OK ) (OK) (OK )
Check N1,Rd
Punching Joint
0.50 0.20 0.52 0.55
Shear Failure Capacity, 641 979 372 355
(OK) (OK ) (OK) (OK )
Check N1,Rd

Discussion

This case study was chosen to verify the N joints design spreadsheet. This design example
was done by the BRE, SCI and Ove Arup & Partners. The joint design example was actually
extracted from part of the roof truss design as shown in Figure 4-12.

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RESULTS AND DISCUSSIONS HES 5108 RESEARCH PROJECT

Figure 4-12: Outline of 30m span truss (Taken from BRE, SCI, Ove Arup & Partners 1994)

The gapped N joint in Figure 4-11 is the connection between member 6, 7, 11 and 12 as
shown in Figure 4-12. The front part of the design included the CHS member design and
continues with joint checking. Both chord (6, 7) and brace 1(11) were under tension and
brace 2 (12) was under compression. Detailed information on this worked example can be
found in Appendix A6 whereas full design calculation set of spreadsheet can be found in
Appendix B6.

Gap joints will usually cause eccentricity and secondary bending. However, the eccentricity
is acceptable in joint design if the intersection of the centre lines of brace members lies within
the valid range measured from the centre line of the chord member. The valid range is in
between 25% of chord diameter towards the outside of joint (positive eccentricity) as shown
in Figure 4-13(b) and 55% of chord diameter towards in inner side of the joint (negative
eccentricity) as shown in Figure 4-13(c). This can be expressed in -0.55d0 e 0.25d0.

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RESULTS AND DISCUSSIONS HES 5108 RESEARCH PROJECT

Figure 4-13: Influence of gap and overlap on eccentricity (modified from Whitfield & Morris 2009)

As long as it passed this valid range and all other geometrical limits, the effects of
eccentricity were taken into account in the joint design formulae. However it is always
recommended to keep eccentricities to minimal. Also, the secondary moments due to joint
stiffness will not affect the resistance (capacity) of the joint for the joint that satisfied all the
geometrical limits provided in Table 3-3 of Section 3.2.1.

In the initial design stage, zero eccentricity was assumed due to the use of wire frame. It will
be ideal to have zero eccentricity as eccentricities results in additional moments. Hence, zero
eccentricity is recommended to be the starting point and only then geometry will control
whether the joint is a gap or overlap joint. In some case when gap or overlap validity checks
are considered, there might be necessary to introduce little joint eccentricity in order to pass
the gap or overlap validity checks. The condition is that the eccentricity introduce have to be
kept within the parameter limit mentioned earlier. If the eccentricity limit did not met at the
first place, secondary moments due to eccentricity need to be taken into consideration in the
joint design. Therefore, gap and overlap validity checks in this case have priority over
eccentricity limits.

A positive eccentricity of 39mm was found in this case. It was within the valid range of -
0.55d0 e 0.25d0 and hence, this eccentricity will not influence the joint capacity
(resistance).

The example did not show the validity check for the gap and eccentricity. The design
spreadsheet checked all the parameters limits and all passed. Hence, the joint reached the
ultimate loads either by chord face failure or punching shear failure. The checking was then

72
RESULTS AND DISCUSSIONS HES 5108 RESEARCH PROJECT

proceeded to check the axial resistance of the joint. Since the diameter of brace member (d1)
was less than subtraction of diameter of chord with two times of chord thickness (d0 2t0),
the chord punching shear needed to be taken into consideration for determination of joint
strength.

The result showed that all utilization ratios were less than 1.0. Thus, the design of joint was
sufficient. From comparison as shown in Table 4-16, the design spreadsheet again showed up
with greater value as compared to the case study. This difference was looked into by referring
the steps in detailed. One of the reasons was due to the partial safety factor used. The other
reason is that the formula used to obtain the joint capacity (resistance) for brace 2 are
different. Eurocode 3-2005 suggested the ratio of the bracing angles to calculate the capacity
for Brace 2 (Eqn 3-9) whereas the work example used Eqn 3-8 to calculate the capacity for
Brace 2 This work example probably adopted an earlier version of EC3 instead of the 2005
version. Hence, it can be said that the Eurocode 3 adopted by BRE, SCI, Ove Arup &
Partners was more conservative than the Eurocode 3 version 2005.

Chord face failure once again governed the joint capacity. The outcomes from design
spreadsheets were in good agreement with the Case 4, 5 and 6. Thus, this had verified the K
and N Joints Design Spreadsheet.

Testings were done by altering the input in this K and N Joints Design Spreadsheet. Lower
value and higher value both gave high joint capacity (resistance) as discussed in Case 2. A
smaller bracing angle, resulted in a high joint capacity as well. Also, joint capacity
decreased when the gap between braces increased. So, it is recommended to provide
minimum gap distance to maximize the joint capacity.

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RESULTS AND DISCUSSIONS HES 5108 RESEARCH PROJECT

4.7 KT Joint

There was no case study found to verify the KT Joint Design Spreadsheet. KT Joint
Design Spreadsheet was created in a similar way of creating K and N Joint Design
Spreadsheet. Since K and N Joint Design Spreadsheet was verified by Case 4, 5 and 6, it
was assumed that KT Joint Design Spreadsheet was verified also.

4.8 Multiplanar Joints

The behavior of multiplanar CHS joints is similar to the corresponding uniplanar. Eurocode
3-2005 suggested that a reduction factor needed to be applied when calculating the joint
capacity (resistance). Therefore, design engineers could easily identify the behavior of CHS
multiplanar joints and relations between loads in different planes. It is recommended to
design multiplanar joints that satisfied the validity range suggested in Table 3-3 as the
behavior of multiplanar joints are very similar to those of their uniplanar counterpart.

TT Joint

As mentioned in Section 2.2.2, the capacity (resistance) of multiplanar T joint, TT joint did
not vary substantially if compared to the uniplanar T joint. Hence, the reduction factor of 1.0
was suggested in Eurocode 3-2005. This means that the capacity (resistance) of the
multiplanar joint is equal to that of its uniplanar joint respectively. Design spreadsheet f for
TT joint was created.

A set of design spreadsheet was included in Appendix B8 using the input from Case 2. The
outcomes from the design spreadsheet were identical with case. Since the T an Y joints
spreadsheet was verified earlier, the TT joint was assumed to be verified also.

XX Joint

Also mentioned in Section 2.2.2, multiplanar effects are most significant for XX joint. The
multiplanar loading onto the joints give significant effects on the strength and stiffness if

74
RESULTS AND DISCUSSIONS HES 5108 RESEARCH PROJECT

compared to a uniplanar X joint. Members 1 and 2 can be either in compression or tension.


N2,Ed/N1,Ed is negative if one member is in tension and one in compression.

The reduction factor is calculated using this formula. = 1 + 0.33N2,Ed/N1,Ed (Eqn 3-11)
where modulus of N2,Ed should less than or equal to that of N1,Ed.

When both X braces on both planes were loaded with same magnitude but opposite sense
(compression and tension), the strength decreased by about 33 percent of its uniplanar joint
capacity (resistance). In contrast, the joint capacity increases significantly when the joint
were loaded with the same sense.

This may due to the nett forces applied to multiplanar joint are minimal when the sense of
loading are same. Forces canceled out each other and hence less forces act onto the joint
which gives a higher capacity or resistance. A conservative assumption had been made in
Eurocode that the capacity will also increase by around 33% in the case of same loading
sense for both braces of joint in both planes.

A set of design spreadsheet was included in Appendix B9 using the input from Case 3. The
outcomes of design spreadsheet showed slight differences with case study. This is due to the
reduction factor applied onto the joint capacity for its uniplanar counterpart. In both K1 and
K2 planes were loaded with same magnitude and same sense of loading. Both braces in both
planes are loaded in compression. Therefore, it gave the reduction factor of 1.33 and the joint
capacity increased by 33% if compared to its corresponding uniplanar joint capacity
(resistance). Since the X joints spreadsheet was verified earlier, the XX Joint Design
Spreadsheet was assumed to be verified also.

KK Joint

Eurocode 3-2005 suggested reduction factor of 0.9 for multiplanar KK joint provided that the
KK is a gap-typed KK joints satisfies Eqn 3-12 in Section 3.3.7. Member 1 should always in
compression and member 2 is always in tension as shown in Figure 3-17. This is conservative
as compared to CIDECT design guides as CIDECT were suggesting the correction
(reduction) factor of 1.0 instead of 0.9.

75
RESULTS AND DISCUSSIONS HES 5108 RESEARCH PROJECT

A set of design spreadsheet was included in Appendix B10 using the input from Case 5. The
outcomes of design spreadsheet showed minor differences with case study. This is due to the
reduction factor applied onto the joint capacity for its uniplanar counterpart. Since the K
joints spreadsheet was verified earlier, the KK Joint Design Spreadsheet was assumed to
be verified also.

76
CONSLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS HES 5108 RESEARCH PROJECT

5.0 CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS

The design rules for Circular Hollow Sections (CHS) joints had been reviewed and studied.
Design spreadsheets have been created in the Microsoft Excel in accordance with Eurocode
3. The important design considerations such as parameter limits or the validity check have
been included in the design spreadsheets. This check is important to determine modes of
failure which are critical. They are usually only chord face failure and punching shear failure
need to be considered. For any joints that did not pass the validity checks, all the six failure
modes should be considered. Considerations and parameter affecting design capacities
(resistances) need to be taken at the design stage. Problems arise will affect project schedule,
cause delay and even bring additional workload for other engineers and also fabricator that
are eventually costly and time consuming. Therefore, it is crucial that a design engineer has
an appreciation and knowledge of influential considerations which affect joint strength.

The design spreadsheets created were verified based on worked examples and case studies of
different scenarios. From the design, it can be concluded that chord face failure most of the
time governed the joint strength as the value calculated for chord face failure is lesser than
that of punching shear failure in both axial and moment resistances. Recommendations on
design of joint have been proven using the design spreadsheets created. Joint capacity can be
increased by adopting a lower chord diameter to thickness ratio (), a higher brace diameter
to chord diameter ratio (), or smaller bracing angle () for all the CHS joints. Gap between
brace members should be kept to minimal in order to gives maximum joint capacity. Gap
joints for K and N joints are preferred if compared to overlap joints due to the reason that the
members are easier to prepare, fit and weld. However, overlap joints giving a higher joint
capacity if compared to gap joint had been proven. Decision on type of joint will be made
depending on factors such as economic and others.

In conclusion, the aim of this research project has been achieved. A design tool that can be
used to determine the static design capacities of uniplanar and multiplanar joints in steel
hollow sections has been created using Microsoft Excel Spreadsheets. The Spreadsheets have
been verified to ensure the accuracy and applicability of the design tool created.

77
CONSLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS HES 5108 RESEARCH PROJECT

Future Work Recommendations

Finite Element Analysis software can be used to further verify the design tool created using
Microsoft Excel Spreadsheets. Another way of verifying the design tool created will be
experimental studies which may be costly and time consuming. Equipments needed for
experimental studies may not be available.

Design tool for CHS joint connecting gusset plates to CHS members can be one of the future
works recommendations. Other than that, design tool can be created for CHS joints
connecting open sections such as I and H sections or Rectangular Hollow Sections (RHS) to
CHS members. Also, design tool for special types of welded CHS joints can also be
generated to design special joints as mentioned in Eurocode 3-2005.

Many researches had been done on reinforced joints, composite joints and High Strength
Steel in CHS joints. Reinforced joint can be those mentioned in Section 2.3.2.
Reinforcements can be done using collar plate, doubler plater and also grouted chord. CHS
joints using High Strength Steel can be applied in steel construction for civil engineering
when both weight and space occupied are critical. These could be recommendations that can
be done in the future.

78
REFERENCES HES 5108 RESEARCH PROJECT

6.0 REFERENCES

Blodgett, OW & Miller DK 1999, Welded Connections, the Lincoln Electric Company,
viewed 11 March 2011,
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BSI 2005, Eurocode 3: Design of Steel Structures -- Part 1 -8: Design of Joints, British
Standards Institution, United Kingdom.

Calzn, JM, Jimnez, CC, Ding, JM, Zhao, X & Sun HH 2010, Structural design of the
Spanish Pavilion for the Expo 2010 in Shanghai, Tubular Structures XIII, Hong Kong , 15-
17 December 2010, 13th International Symposium on Tubular Structures, The University of
Hong Kong, Hong Kong, pp. 365-372.

Chantal 2010, Spanish Pavilion at Shanghai Expo 2010, viewed 12 March 2011,

<http://cubeme.com/blog/2010/10/07/spanish-pavilion-at-shanghai-expo-2010/>.

Chapter One Introduction 2005, NUS, viewed 13 March 2011,

<https://scholarbank.nus.edu.sg/termsofuse;jsessionid=2EBB054DE1EA33B5BAA98E78143
9576B>.

Choo, YS, van der Vegte, GJ, Zettlemover, N, Li, BH & Liew, JYR 2005, Static strength of
T-joints reinforced with doubler or collar plates, I: Experimental investigations, Journal of
Structural Engineering, ASCE, 131(1): 119128.

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REFERENCES HES 5108 RESEARCH PROJECT

Dale, K 2005, Innovative Tubular Connections, Department of Civil Engineering, Monash


University, , viewed 9 March 2011,

<http://www.autocontrol.com.cn/eip/upload/datataker/PD70_Innovative_Tubular_Connectio
ns.pdf>.

Design of SHS Welded Joints 2005, Corus Tubes, viewed 7 March 2011,

<http://www.tatasteeleurope.com/file_source/StaticFiles/Construction/Tubes/CT16-
SHS%20Welded%20Joints%209-08-05.pdf>.

Engineering & Training center 2000, TumCivil, viewed 10 March 2011,


<http://www.tumcivil.com/engfanatic/training_gen.php?training_id=91>.

Fung, TC, Chan, TK & Soh, CK 1999, Ultimate Capacity of Doubler Plate-Reinforced
Tubular Joints, Journal of Structural Engineering, ASCE, 125(8):891899.

Hollow sections for structural and mechanical application 2010, Tata Steel, viewed 5 March
2011,
<http://www.tatasteeleurope.com/file_source/StaticFiles/Construction/Tubes/Structural_Tube
s_PublicPublic/Overview_UK_SP_WEB.pdf>.

Hoon, KH, Wong, LK & Soh, AK 2001, Experimental Investigation Of A Doubler-Plate


Reinforced Tubular T-Joint Subjected To Combined Loadings, Journal of Consructional
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Joints in Hollow Section 2011, Tata Steel, viewed 10 March 2011,


<http://www.corusconstruction.com/en/reference/teaching_resources/architectural_studio_ref
erence/elements/connections/joints_in_hollow_sections/>.

Kurobane, Y 2002, Connections in tubular structures, Wiley Online Library, viewed 12


March 2011, < http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/pse.102/pdf>.

Lecture 13.3: The Behaviour and Design of Welded Connections between Rectangular
Hollow Sections under Predominantly Static Loading n.d., UNI LJ, viewed 15 March 2011,

< http://www.fgg.uni-lj.si/kmk/esdep/master/wg13/l0300.htm>.

Lee, MMK & Llewelyn-Parry, A 2004, Offshore Tubular T-Joints Reinforced With Internal
Plain Annular Stiffeners, Journal of Structural Engineering, ASCE, 130(6): 942951.

Lee, MMK & Llewelyn-Parry, A 2005, Strength Prediction For Ring-Stiffened DT-Joints In
Offshore Jacket Structures, Engineering Structures, 27(3): 421430.

Lemoine, J 2011, Advantages of Microsoft Excel, eHow, viewed 15 March 2011.


<http://www.ehow.com/facts_4967587_advantages-microsoft-
excel.html#ixzz1GZVoHYyP>.

LUSAS Bridge software - Key Features 2010, LUSAS, viewed 17 March 2011,
<http://www.lusas.com/products/bridge_tour1.html>.

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Mitri, HS, Scola, S, & Redwood, RG 1987, Experimental investigation into the behaviour of
axially loaded tubular V-joints, Proceedings CSCE Centennial Conference, Montreal,
Canada, pp.397-410.

Morris, C 2006, SHS Joint Design Examples, Corus Tubes, viewed 8 May 2011, <
http://www.corusconstruction.com/file_source/StaticFiles/Construction/Tubes/CT-
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Shao, YB, Jin, YF, Zhang, JC, Qiu, ZH, Chiew, SP & Lie, ST 2010, Static Behaviour of
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Multiplanar Tubular Joints with Inner-Plate Reinforcement, International Journal of Space
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7.0 APPENDICES

Appendix A: Verification Worked Examples and Case Studies

A
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Appendix A1: Case 1 - T Joint with Axial and Moment Loading

A1 - 1
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A1 - 2
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Appendix A2: Case 2 - T Joint with Axial Loading

A2 - 1
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Appendix A3: Case 3 - X Joint with Axial Loading

A3 - 1
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Appendix A4: Case 4 - Gapped K Joint with Axial Loading

A4 - 1
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A4 - 2
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A4 - 3
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A4 - 4
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Appendix A5: Case 5 - Overlapped K Joint with Axial Loading

A5 - 1
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A5 - 2
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A5 - 3
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A5 - 4
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Appendix A6: Case 6 - Gapped N Joint with Axial Loading

A6 - 1
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A6 - 2
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A6 - 3
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A6 - 4
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A6 - 5
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A6 - 6
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A6 - 7
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A6 - 8
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A6 - 9
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A6 - 10
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Appendix B: Design Spreadsheets

B
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Appendix B1: Case 1 - T Joint with Axial and Moment Loading

B1 - 1
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B1 - 2
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B1 - 3
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Appendix B2: Case 2 - T Joint with Axial Loading

B2 - 1
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B2 - 2
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B2 - 3
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Appendix B3: Case 3 - X Joint with Axial Loading

B3 - 1
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B3 - 2
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B3 - 3
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Appendix B4: Case 4 - Gapped K Joint with Axial Loading

B4 - 1
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B4 - 2
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B4 - 3
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Appendix B5: Case 5 - Overlapped K Joint with Axial Loading

B5 - 1
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B5 - 2
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B5 - 3
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Appendix B6: Case 6 - Gapped N Joint with Axial Loading

B6 - 1
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B6 - 2
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B6 - 3
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Appendix B7: KT Joint

B7 - 1
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B7 - 2
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B7 - 3
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Appendix B8: TT Joint

B8 - 1
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B8 - 2
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B8 - 3
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Appendix B9: XX Joint

B9 - 1
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B9 - 2
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B9 - 3
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Appendix B10: KK Joint

B10 - 1
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B10 - 2
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B10 - 3
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B10 - 4