July 19, 2022


ASDIP STEEL is a structural engineering software for design of steel members and connections. It includes two new features to import all steel column loads and geometry either directly from an ETABS model, or from any analysis software via an Excel spreadsheet.

These new integration features allow you to design all of the steel columns in a building using ASDIP STEEL, regardless of the analysis software that generated the loads and geometry. This post is a brief overview of these new integration features, and how to use them to complete your design in a fraction of the time.

ASDIP x ETABS Integration for Steel Columns

All buildings involve a number of load cases such as dead, live, wind, snow, seismic, etc. Wind and seismic loads may be particularly complex due to the multiple parameters involved in the generation of these loads according to the design provisions.

If we consider all of the loads on each column, and the large number of columns that can be found in a typical steel building, then the number of loads could exceed the hundreds or even thousands. Entering all these loads and the geometric dimensions by hand would take a vast amount of time and effort. 

Fortunately, ASDIP STEEL is now able to import the column loads directly from the ETABS model, so that the columns can be completely designed, optimized, and checked in less time using the 'Steel Column' design module in ASDIP STEEL.


To import the column loads from ETABS, open ASDIP STEEL and in the Project Manager go to Design > Import Columns from ETABS. Select the model file to open and click OK. This will open the model in ETABS and will run the analysis automatically to collect the information. Then ETABS will close.

In the example above, we have imported 13,440 column loads for the 4-story steel building shown, just with the click of a button. Entering all these values by hand would be completely impractical. 

In the Project Manager, nodes for all of the imported columns will be created in the tree under Steel Column. Each node represents one column between levels in the building, meaning that all the column loads of the building were imported into ASDIP, as shown below. You can click on any of the nodes to get access to the calculations for that specific column. On the Loads tab, you will find all of the imported loads.


Importing Steel Column Loads via Excel

ASDIP STEEL is now also able to import the column loads from any analysis software of your choice using an Excel spreadsheet, so that the columns can be completely designed, optimized, and checked. This feature is also part of the 'Steel Column' design module of ASDIP STEEL. 

The first step is to download the Excel template from the Help menu options, which shows exactly where to enter the required information, as shown below. Then, copy the required information from your analysis software and paste it into your Excel spreadsheet. The template has two additional tabs with an example, so it is easy to follow the process to enter the information in the required format.

ASDIP STEEL will be able to read this information when you go to Design > Import Columns from Excel. Select the Excel file and click OK. The full set of steel columns will show in the Project Manager once the loads and geometry have been imported, as shown above. Each column will be shown as a node on the tree. As stated before, you can double click on any of the nodes to open the calculations of that specific column and check the loads or make any desired changes.



ASDIP STEEL now has the ability to import steel column loads directly from ETABS or via an Excel spreadsheet. A Batch Design Manager will be released soon, which will produce a preliminary design of all the steel columns in a building at once.

For our collection of blog posts about structural steel design, please visit Structural Steel Design.

Detailed information is available about this structural engineering software by visiting ASDIP STEEL. 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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