August 26, 2018


ASDIP STEEL is a structural engineering software for the design of structural steel members. It includes the design of composite beams based on the AISC provisions. This document is a step-by-step design example of a composite beam using ASDIP STEEL.

Click here to download ASDIP STEEL free 15-day trial.

Composite beam design example

As an example, consider the beam shown below, which is part of a storage building. The first level is a parking space, therefore the second floor will have a series of transfer beams to support the columns of the storage levels above, which typically are in a 10'x10' grid. Design the transfer beam acting in composite action with the 5" concrete slab on metal deck. The design loads are D=0.20 and L=2.5 k/ft plus concentrated loads D=7.5 and L=12.5.k as shown. The beam spacing is 20' and it's laterally braced at the point load locations.


Design Steps

1.- Enter the beam span and the material properties. In this case, the span length is 30'-0". Since the metal deck braces the top flange, specify "Top continuously braced". For other cases, the lateral bracing location can be entered in the table.. The At-a-Glance tab shows a summary of the design for a quick overview of your work as you go.


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2.- Enter the concrete slab properties and dimensions.  Slab thickness is 5". This is an interior beam spaced at 20'. Specify composite and unshored beam.. Let ASDIP calculate the optimum partial composite percentage. If desired, you can specify full composite action. The Condensed tab shows a more complete set of results grouped by topic, great for a more detailed overview of your design.


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3.- Enter the distributed loads on the beam, which include the selfweight of beam and slab. Select to specify the load cases. In this example we will design the beam per ASD. The Detailed tab shows a complete set of calculations with exposed formulas and with references to the AISC code.


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4.- Enter the concentrated loads on the beam, which represent the column reactions from the upper levels. The Graph tab shows an image of the beam, loads and reactions, and the generated shear and moment diagrams per load combination.


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5.- Use the Design Manager to find all the sections that pass the design criteria in a specified depth range. In this case let's find all the winners with depths between 16" and 30". Populate the table and then sort it by weight. Highlight your winner and click Select to use this beam section.


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ASDIP STEEL includes the design of steel and composite beams, with multiple options to optimize the design easily. This real-life composite beam design example shows that the process can be completed and optimized within minutes.

Detailed information is available about this structural engineering software by visiting ASDIP STEEL. For engineering background, see the blog post Steel and Composite Beams: A Design Overview. For our collection of blog posts about steel design please visit Structural Steel Design.

You are invited to download the Free 15-day Software Trial, or go ahead and Place your Order.

Best regards,

Javier Encinas, PE

ASDIP Structural Software

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