Mechanical structural analysis

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Mechanical calculation of structures is a specialized branch of civil engineering that focuses on analyzing and predicting the behavior of structures subjected to various forces and loads, such as gravitational loads, seismic forces or winds, among others.Engineers use mathematical models and advanced computational tools to calculate and optimize the strength and stability of structures, ensuring they meet established safety and design standards.

Key factors in mechanical structural analysis

All loads and forces that will act on the structure throughout its lifespan must be identified and quantified. These can be permanent loads, such as the weight of the construction itself, or variable loads, including occupancy loads and environmental forces.

Material properties

Understanding the mechanical properties of the materials used in construction is essential for determining their capacity to withstand applied loads. Factors such as tensile strength, compression resistance, bending, and elasticity are considered in the calculation.

Structural analysis

Mathematical models and analysis methods are employed to assess the structure’s response to applied loads. These analyses can be static, dynamic, or nonlinear, depending on the complexity of the structure and the forces involved.

Design and dimensioning

Once the loads, material properties, and structural analysis have been understood, the structure is designed and dimensioned optimally and safely. This involves selecting the appropriate type and quantity of materials, as well as establishing the dimensions and shapes of structural components.
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Importance of mechanical calculation of structures

• Safety: The safety of individuals who will use the structures is of paramount importance. Mechanical calculation ensures that constructions are robust enough to withstand anticipated loads and prevent collapses or catastrophic failures.
• Efficiency and Economy: Proper calculation allows for the optimization of materials and resources, reducing construction costs and enhancing efficiency in the design and operation of structures.
• Adaptability to Specific Conditions: Each project has its own unique characteristics, such as soil type, geographic location, and climatic conditions. Mechanical calculation allows structures to be tailored to these variables, ensuring their long-term viability and durability.
• Regulatory Compliance: Structures must adhere to a set of construction standards and codes established by local and international authorities. Mechanical calculation ensures that constructions align with these standards and regulations.

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FAQ

What methods are used for the mechanical structural analysis?

There are different methods for the mechanical structural analysis, with some of the most common being the finite element method, the matrix method, the displacement method, and the force method.

What is the importance of load tests in the mechanical structural analysis?

Load tests are crucial for validating and verifying the theoretical calculations made in the design of a structure. These tests allow for the evaluation of the actual load-carrying capacity and deformation behavior of the structure under controlled conditions. This helps confirm that the safety and performance requirements established in the design are met.

How are seismic conditions taken into account in the mechanical structural analysis?

In seismic zones, structures must be designed to withstand significant seismic forces. Dynamic analysis methods are used, and parameters like the seismic coefficient, response spectrum, and inertial forces are considered to ensure proper resistance and behavior in the event of an earthquake.

What is the role of materials in the mechanical structural analysis?

The materials used in the construction of structures directly influence their load-bearing capacity and behavior under different forces. Mechanical calculations must take into account the mechanical properties of materials, such as strength, elasticity, and durability, to ensure proper safety and service life of the structure.

What is the difference between static load and dynamic load in the mechanical structural analysis?

Static load refers to constant and predictable forces acting on a structure, while dynamic load involves forces that vary over time or are unpredictable, such as seismic loads, wind, and vibrations. Mechanical calculations must consider both to ensure the stability and safety of the structure.