Spiral Staircase in KF Aerospace Centre for Excellence, Canada
A unique and extraordinary spiral staircase has been constructed in the KF Aerospace Centre for Excellence in Kelowna, BC, Canada. The staircase consists of a timber-concrete composite system (TCC) and spans a length of approximately 70 ft and a height of approximately 23 ft without intermediate supports.
|General Contractor||Sawchuk Developments|
|Structural Analysis and Construction||
Stair and Substructure Model Data
Dlubal customer StructureCraft was responsible for the structural design and construction of this project. RFEM was used for the structural analysis.
For KF Aerospace, StructureCraft’s engineers were presented with a unique and challenging design concept: connect two levels of the museum with a free-standing spiral CLT staircase. The spiral shape requires bending and twisting of the cross-laminated timber elements, resulting in bending about the major and minor axes and in torsional forces. This not only added complexity to the manufacturing process but also susceptibility to dynamic excitation, which typically governs the design of stair structures.
The spiral staircase is made of double-curved cross-laminated timber with a concrete ceiling on top. First, the concrete provides the necessary mass to control the vibrations in the staircase, which spans approximately 70 ft. Additionally, the composite action between the concrete and the cross-laminated timber significantly increases the overall stiffness. Support columns were, therefore, not required, maintaining a highly esthetic structure.
Design in RFEM
RFEM was used to determine the internal forces of the TCC system. Program features such as input via spring stiffness diagrams and the ability to adjust certain material properties for the selected load cases have helped to assess the long-term behavior and creep deformation of the timber-concrete composite. The add-on module RF-Laminate also helped to determine the bending and shear stresses in each layer of the individually defined CLT superstructure.
Project Location5800 Lapointe Drive, Kelowna International Airport (YLW)
Staircase Spiral staircase Cross-laminated timber CLT Timber Concrete Timber-concrete composite
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