Member, Plate and Solid - which one to use?

Applies To
Environment: ALL
Area: Modeling Solutions
Subarea: Geometry
Original Author:Biswatosh Purkayastha, Bentley Technical Support Group

How does one categorize a structural element and designate it accordingly with the proper STAAD entity?

There are 3 choices when it comes to modeling structural entities. They are: frame members, plate elements and solid elements.

As a general thumb rule, if in a cuboid, the ratio of the largest dimension to the smallest dimension is less than 10, it is preferable to designate the element as a Solid.

For example, in the cuboid, if we call the largest dimension "L" , the second largest dimension as "B" and the smallest one as "T" like ( L>B>T) , there may be three conditions:

(1) If L/T <10 (then obviously B/T<10), then the element can be set to a solid.

(2) If L/T >10  but B/T <10, then the element is more like a member than a solid or a plate element.

(3) If L/T >10 and B/T >10 , then the element is more like a plate element.