RAM SS V15.09 Release Notes

RAM Structural System CONNECT Edition Update 9 Release 15.09 Release Notes

Release Date: July 10, 2018

This document contains important information regarding changes to the RAM Structural System. It is important that all users are aware of these changes. Please distribute these Release Notes and make them available to all users of the RAM Structural System.

Bentley CONNECT:

Bentley is in the process of requiring all users to sign-in in order to use any Bentley programs. This is being done now in anticipation of the implementation of powerful and customized features intended to better help users perform their jobs. Moving to this sign-in requirement now better facilitates our implementing those new features.

If you do not already have a Bentley ID, go to http://www.bentley.com/profile and select the Sign Up Now link.

Bentley CONNECT already offers several benefits, and the value continues to increase. Listed here are three key features:


CONNECT Advisor provides links to pertinent articles, short training videos, courses and webinars. It can be accessed by selecting the Bentley Cloud Services – CONNECT Advisor command in the RAM Manager, or by selecting the CONNECT Advisor icon from the tool bar in any of the modules.


When you sign in to your Bentley account you now have easy access to CONNECTION Center. This personalized portal gives you access to Usage reports, site configuration information, downloads, and Learning information on webinars, seminars and events, and includes a transcript listing the Bentley courses that you have completed. Your personal portal also lists your recent projects with a portal into analytics on that project. CONNECTION Center can be accessed by selecting the Bentley Cloud Services – CONNECTION Center command or by selecting the Sign In command in the upper right corner of the RAM Manager screen.


All of Bentley’s CONNECT Edition programs, including RAM Structural System, allow models to be associated with a project. Multiple models, from any of the Bentley products, can be associated with a given project. This simplifies the process of keeping track of work done for a project, and will enable analytics to be performed and reported for the project.

A ProjectWise Projects portal enables you and your project teams to see project details required to evaluate team activity and understand project performance.

- View project activity by site, application and user

- Gain insights into the users who are working on your projects and their effort

- Register and manage your CONNECTED Projects

- Access ProjectWise Connection Services including ProjectWise Project Sharing, ProjectWise Project Performance Dashboards and ProjectWise Issue Resolution Administration

When a model is Saved in this version the program will ask for a Project to which the file is to be associated. Projects can be registered (created) from your Personal Portal, or from the Assign Project dialog by selecting the + Register Project command.


Except for minor corrections, the Tutorial Manual has not been updated but is still valid. The appearance of some parts of the program in this version may differ from that shown in the Tutorial.

Important Notices:

This version automatically converts databases created in previous versions to the new database format. Note that a backup file is created automatically when a database is converted; the name of the database is the same, with “Orig” and the version number appended to the name. The file has an extension of “.zip” and is located in the same directory as the original database.

The previous steel tables and load combination templates supplied with the program will be replaced with new tables and templates of the same name. If you have customized any Master or Design tables or load combination templates supplied with the program without changing the file names, those file names should be renamed from the original RAM table names prior to installation to prevent your changes from being lost.

Installation Instructions:

If you have enabled the CONNECTION Client you will automatically be notified of the newest version and will be able to update through that service by simply selecting the update command.

Otherwise, this version can be found on the Bentley Software Fulfilment web page by logging into the Personal Portal or the Enterprise Portal and selecting the Software Downloads icon. Perform a search for “RAM Structural System”, select any of the RAM Structural System modules (e.g., RAM Modeler; they all use the same installer), and select the latest version of the RAM Structural System.

Product Licensing FAQ:

Appendix A at the end of these Notes contains a document describing features available in the RAM Structural System to help prevent inadvertent use of unlicensed modules. Refer to that document for more information.

Security Risk Advisory:

Not applicable to this release. Every effort is made to ensure that there are no security risks in the software. There are no known security issues, no issues were addressed in this version.

New Features and Enhancements:

For details on these new features and enhancements, refer to the manual .pdf files available from the Help menu in each module or from the Manuals folder on your hard drive.

EN 1992-1-1:2004+A1:2014

The updated requirements of Eurocode EN 1992-1-1:2004+A1:2014 Design of concrete structures have been implemented in RAM Concrete.

EN 1992-1-1 and EN 1992-1-1 UK National Annex

The UK National Annex to EN 1992-1-1:2004+A1:2014 has been implemented in RAM Concrete Analysis, RAM Concrete Beam, and RAM Concrete Column. In the Criteria – Code command there is now the option to select either EN 1992-1-1 or EN 1992-1-1 UK NA.

National Building Code of Canada 2015

The requirements of the National Building Code of Canada 2015 for the automatic generation of Wind loads, Seismic loads, and Response Spectra Analysis have been implemented.

Member Force Display

The Process – Results – Member Forces command has been enhanced to show values at any number of locations along the member length. Previously the option only allowed display of values at quarter points.

Bentley CONNECT Advisor

Bentley Connect Advisor provides links to valuable resources, including training courses, Bentley Communities articles, and YouTube videos. This feature has been enhanced with more material, filtered to provide more pertinent links. This feature is available under the Bentley Cloud Service menu in the RAM Manager.

Error Corrections:

Some program errors have been corrected for Version 15.09. Corrections made to graphics, reports, Modeler functions, program crashes, etc., that were considered minor are not listed here. The noteworthy error corrections are listed here in order to notify you that they have been corrected or to assist you in determining the impact of those errors on previous designs. These errors were generally obscure and uncommon, affecting only a very small percentage of models, or had no impact on the results. The errors, when they occurred, were generally quite obvious. However, if there is any question, it may be advisable to reanalyze previous models to determine the impact, if any. In each case the error only occurred for the precise conditions indicated. Those errors that may have resulted in unconservative designs are shown with an asterisk. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause.

RAM Steel Beam

ASSIGN SIZE: The Assign – Beam Size – Single command was not functioning.

Effect: Beam sizes could only be assigned using the Fence command.

CHANGING BEAM FROM NONCOMPOSITE TO COMPOSITE: If a noncomposite beam was changed to composite (or vice versa) in the Modeler, an internal flag was erroneously set indicating that the size associated with the beam was a user-specified size.

Effect: If the beam already had a size associated with it, from a previous design for example, then that size would be assigned to the beam as if it were a user-specified size, and not re-optimized during Design-All. The result was that the size was not the optimum size, but may have been either larger or smaller than needed (design warnings were correctly given if the beam was smaller than necessary).

BEAM FACTORED REACTION SUMMARY REPORT: For models with more than one floor type, the summary report showed zero values for the Total Positive and Total Negative loads for layouts following the first floor type summary report.

Effect: While beam designs were correctly performed, the FACTORED REACTION SUMMARY REPORT only displayed zeros for the Total Positive and Negative reactions when there were more than one floor layout types. The results for the first floor type layout were correctly reported while subsequent layout types reported zero values.

RAM Concrete Beam

SPECIAL MOMENT FRAMES*: The requirement of ACI 318-11 Section (or analogous clauses in other ACI codes) was determined incorrectly, potentially resulting in use of an incorrect value of Vc in the determination of the transverse reinforcing.

Effect: When determining the required transverse reinforcing for SMFs, the program may have used the value of Vc when it should have used 0.0, or it may have used Vc = 0.0 when it could have used the actual value.

RAM Concrete Column

ACI 318 Beta_d *: The Beta_d factor in ACI318-08 10.10.6 and later, for columns unbraced against sway, was still being calculated according the the ACI318-05 provisions based on shear.

Effect: An incorrect moment magnifier was calculated and used. The ACI318-08 (and later) provision based on axial load has now been adopted.

ACI 318 Cm: Prior to ACI 318-08, Cm used in slenderness calculations had a lower bound of 0.4.  This lower bound value has been removed in ACI 318-08, 318-11 and 318-14, but the program still restricted Cm to this limit.

Effect: Potentially conservative moment magnifier was calculated and used. This restriction has been removed for designs to ACI 318-08 and later.

ACI 318 SLENDERNESS LIMIT: Concrete columns designed to ACI318-08 or later were being checked for slenderness greater than 100, a provision which existed prior to ACI318-08.

Effect: Potentially, slender elements were rejected that should have been permitted. This check was not required and has been removed.

ACI 318 MEMBERS WITH LARGER lu/r: The ACI 318-05 provision in clause 10.13.5 is no longer required in ACI 318-08 and later but was still being checked.

Effect: Potentially conservative member design for members with larger lu/r. The program now no longer checks this provision for designs made to ACI 318-08 and later.

VIEW/UPDATE WARNING: In View/Update, concrete columns designed to BS8110 always gave the error “Unable to Achieve Equilibrium in Section” even when that was not correct.

Effect: The design error was incorrectly displayed but did not affect the design.

RAM Concrete Shearwall

PMM CURVE DISPLAY: The View/Update dialog could crash when trying to display the M-M curve for a P value outside the bounds of the interaction surface.

Effect: Program crash.

LONG PANELS: Walls having continuous wall panels greater in length or height than 416ft (5000") gave a design error related to no bars in the section or to an internal design error.

Effect: For exceptionally long or tall wall panels the program would not provide a design.

RAM Frame – Analysis

EIGENVALUE ANALYSIS SELECTION: The program applied the Ritz Vector solution if Lanczos solution was selected, and applied the Lanczos solution if Ritz Vector solution was selected.

Effect: Wrong Eigenvalue solver was used in analysis.

DIAPHRAGM FORCES REPORT: The program failed to produce the Diaphragm Forces report if the user-defined Section Cut line crossed an opening defined with more than 4 nodes (i.e., not a rectangular opening).

Effect: Diaphragm Forces report not obtained if the section cut was through or to a non-rectangular opening.

CHINA GB 50011-2001 WIND LOAD CASE DIALOG*: The dialog did not show units and did not have unit conversion between English and SI units.

Effect: The dialog was expecting SI unit input; if English unit values were specified it used those values as if SI, resulting in incorrect wind forces. The incorrect values were listed on the Loads and Applied Forces report, so from that the error was obvious.

GRAVITY LOADS CALCULATION: The program calculates total gravity loads on diaphragms, which are later used in calculated of P-Delta effects. If a model includes columns outside diaphragm and if these columns are elevated, the program incorrectly treated this condition as a sloped diaphragm and calculated large gravity loads on diaphragm.

Effect: In a very rare configuration, large gravity load was reported for the diaphragm if the model included elevated columns located outside of any diaphragm. The error was obvious when it occurred.

AS/NZS 1170 WIND LOAD PRESSURE REPORT: The Loads and Applied Forces report did not include wind pressures for the Y-direction in the report unless the load case created for the Y-direction was run alone.

Effect: This is a reporting error only.

FRAME STORY SHEARS DISPLAY: When a new frame number was assigned to a wall this number would not be immediately added to the list of selected frames to display.

Effect: Frame Story Shear values would not be displayed for some walls. Needed to refresh frames display by selecting the frame in View Frames dialog before results would display for that wall.

RAM Frame – Steel Seismic Provisions

AISC 341-10 AND AISC 341-16 DESIGN COMBINATIONS: Custom combinations generated in the Analysis module were erroneously included in the combinations considered for the Seismic Provisions code check when the AISC 341-10 and AISC 341-16 codes were selected.

Effect: Custom combinations generated in the Analysis module were considered in the Seismic Provisions code check. The combinations may have unintentionally governed the member code checks over the Custom and Generated combinations created by the user in the Seismic and Standard Provisions modules. If no Custom combinations were created in the Analysis module, Seismic code checks were correctly performed.

IMF PANEL ZONE JOINT CHECK: When the AISC 358 check box was selected for AISC 341-05, AISC 341-10 and AISC 341-16 codes, Panel Zones for IMF Joints were checked using load combinations that included amplified seismic loads; the combinations should have been those from the applicable building code using analyzed beam end moments.

Effect: IMF Panel Zone checks under AISC 358-05, AISC 358-10 and AISC 358-16 codes should not have applied amplified seismic loads in the load combinations. The Standard Provisions joint check which was sufficient, applied the load combinations from the applicable building. No additional check should have been performed per the requirements of AISC 341-05 Section 10.3 nor AISC 341-10/16 Section E2.6e. The error was conservative, joints which should have otherwise passed code checks may have been failed.

RAM Foundation

BS 8110 FLEXURAL CAPACITY*: The flexural capacities of foundations designed to BS8110 was over-estimated by about 10% for all foundation types (due to an incorrect function call). This affected only release 15.07 and 15.08, but not prior releases.

Effect: Unconservative flexural design of foundations per BS 8110.