VoltAir Office Façade, Berlin, Germany
The new VoltAir office building in Berlin includes a 394 ft x 213 ft area and a height close to 98 ft. The building envelope consists of multiple box elements which form the interior and exterior corners.
|Investor||Volt Berlin GmbH & Co KG|
J. MAYER H. und Partner, Architekten mbB
Metallbau Früh GmbH
Rümmele Bauingenieur GmbH
RFEM Data for Façade Corner Element
The façade elements are suspended from relatively long cantilevers/outriggers fixed to steel brackets. The steel brackets are further fastened to the concrete floors by Halfen rails or anchors. Each box element has a height of approximately 26 ft; a width of 8 ft, 10 in; a fixed support for the vertical and horizontal loads; and two additional roller supports for horizontal loads.
The model is a combination of member, surface, and solid elements with several releases and hinges to absorb tolerances and accurately model the slotted holes. The front T-sections (posts and beams) are modeled with member elements and the outriggers with solid elements to ensure correct force distribution between the front beam elements and the secondary supporting structure. The brackets are displayed as surface elements.
In the locations where screw elements intersect surfaces or solids, average regions have been defined to properly distribute the stresses. The anchor points utilize the concrete surface’s pressure points to withstand the large downward force due to self-weight. At the fixed supports, spring stiffnesses were defined to determine the allowable concrete stress and the tensile force acting on the Halfen rails. At the roller point supports, difficulties arose due to the relatively thin 8 in concrete floor, which was solved by modifying the direction of the stirrup’s slotted holes.
Rümmele Bauingenieur GmbH drew this conclusion: "The user-friendly interface of RFEM made it possible to easily make the necessary changes, which saved us a lot of time in finding practical solutions."
Project LocationAlexanderstraße & Voltairestraße
10179 Berlin, Germany
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"RFEM's user-friendly interfaceM made it possible to make the necessary changes easily, saving us a lot of time and finding practical solutions."
The support conditions of a beam subjected to bending are essential for its resistance to lateral-torsional buckling.
RFEM Model of Façade Corner Element with Fixed Points at Top and Loose Points in Middle and at Bottom | © Rümmele Bauingenieur GmbH
For the joint components, it is possible to check whether the stability failure is relevant (requires the Structure Stability add-on for RFEM 6 / RSTAB 9).
In this case, the critical load factor for all analyzed load combinations and the selected number of mode shapes is calculated for the connection model. The smallest critical load factor is compared with the limit value 15 from the standard EN 1993‑1‑1, Clause 5. Furthermore, a user-defined adjustment of the limit value is possible. Moreover, the corresponding mode shapes are displayed graphically as the result of the stability analysis.
For the stability analysis, an adapted surface model is used to specifically recognize the local buckling shapes. The model of the stability analysis, including the results, can also be saved and used as a separate model file.
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Programs Used for Structural Analysis
Structural engineering software for finite element analysis (FEA) of planar and spatial structural systems consisting of plates, walls, shells, members (beams), solids, and contact elements
Stress analysis of steel surfaces and members