RAM SS V14.04.02 Release Notes

Release Date: September 6, 2011

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.

This version is a minor patch version, correcting some errors in V14.04.01. It also contains some useful enhancements.

New Features and Enhancements

Concrete Beam Design

Graphical Editing of Reinforcing Bars
In the Longitudinal (Main) page of the View/Update dialog, the start and end positions of the reinforcing bars may now be edited by hovering the cursor over the bar ends and dragging the end to a new position. Previously, the only means of editing the bar extents was by typing in new coordinates in the spreadsheet region.

Concrete Column Design

View Column Design Loads
The column axial load corresponding to the controlling design load combination can now be displayed in the 3D view. This is available by selecting View -> Column -> Design Loads. It is also available as a toolbar button for quick access.

SidePlate Connection

In the design of the SidePlate connection it is generally – although not always – required that the column flange be wider than the beam flange in order to accommodate the connection. Previously the program listed the violation of this condition as an Error and required that the geometry conform to that requirement. Now this is listed as a Warning but allows the engineer to proceed even when the beam flange is wider than the column flange. SidePlate should be consulted when this condition occurs, to determine if it is acceptable.

Error Corrections

Some program errors have been identified in V14.04.01 and corrected for Version 14.04.02. 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 un-conservative designs are shown with an asterisk. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause.

Framing Tables

BEAM SELF-WEIGHT ON SLOPING COLUMNS*: If a beam under one-way deck was supported by multiple sloping columns (that is, where two or more columns sloped together at the top, and supported a beam at that location), then the beam self-weight was incorrectly and unconservatively applied to the columns.
Effect: Incorrect and unconservative distribution of beam-self weight may have lead to incorrect analysis and design in some situations with sloping columns.

RAM Concrete – Beam

STIRRUP DESIGN: An error pertaining to shear bar sets for ACI codes, for intermediate and special frames: "Distance is too far from support face" was erroneously given in certain rare situations when there was actually no violation of the respective code provision.
Effect: Transverse reinforcement errors were given when they did not apply. This did not affect the optimization of the reinforcing.

FLEXURAL BARS: When working in SI or metric units, the start and end points of flexural bars that stopped or started within a clear span: when modifying the bar coordinates in the View/Update spreadsheet, the value entered by the user would, on occasion, be rounded by the program to a slightly different value.
Effect: It was not always possible for the user to specify an exact value for a bar cutoff point.

RAM Frame – Analysis

AISC 360 STIFFNESS REDUCTION*: When the option to Use Reduced Stiffness for Steel Members was selected for analysis per the AISC 360 Direct Analysis Method, the stiffness of members that were fixed at both ends was correctly getting reduced, but the stiffness of members fixed at one end and pinned on the other was not.
Effect: Stiffness of the structure was not reduced as much as required for analysis, with no stiffness reduction being applied to the stiffness of members pinned on one end.

DRIFT VALUES FOR SEMIRIGID DIAPHRAGMS*: The program reported the same drift values at different points on a semirigid diaphragm. The reported values were the average values of all nodes.
Effect: This was only a report issue affecting the drift results; the analysis was correct.

GRAVITY FORCES ON SLOPING FRAME COLUMNS*: When two or more Frame columns sloped together at the top, if those columns supported Frame columns from above or Frame beams, the gravity loads from one-way deck applied to those columns were incorrect.
Effect: Incorrect and unconservative distribution of gravity loads from supported Frame members may have lead to incorrect analysis and design in some situations with sloping columns.
LINE LOADS ON SLOPING MESHED DIAPHRAGMS*: Line loads on sloping meshed (semirigid or two-way) diaphragms might have been neglected and not applied to the diaphragm in analysis. This was a rare situation; it did not happen for every sloping meshed diaphragm.
Effect: In rare cases line loads may not have been applied to sloping meshed diaphragms.

RAM Frame – Steel Standard Provisions

SLOW PERFORMANCE: There were some performance issues when design code check was run, in some cases taking significantly longer than it should have. For some computers it was also found that the program gave a "File *.cnx not found " error.
Effect: Either the program aborted due to the erroneous ‘file not found’ error, or it was excessively slow in performing the code check.

RAM Frame – Steel Seismic Provisions

PANEL-ZONE SHEAR STRENGTH*: In the check for AISC 341-05, Section 9.3a Panel-Zone of Beam-to-Column Connections – Shear Strength, the strength of a Panel Zone with Web Plate was unconservative when the supporting column for the story consisted of two or more column segments (such as would occur if there was a partial intermediate level elsewhere in the model). The Panel Zone Shear Reduced by Vc was incorrect.
Effect: AISC 341-05, Section 9.3a Panel-Zone of Beam-to-Column Connections – Shear Strength check was incorrect for joints when the column below was modeled as two or more segments because of an intermediate level.

EBF BEAMS: For the AISC 341-05 seismic provisions check for beams in Eccentric Braced Frames, 15.2a Link Width-Thickness Ratios, the axial load outside the link was used to calculate Ca rather than the axial force in the link.
Effect: A very conservative axial load from outside the link was used in the 15.2a Link Width-Thickness Ratios check, potentially resulting in beams being classified as failing when they should not have been classified as such.

RAM Foundation

DOUBLED PARTITION LOADS*: Partition loads on the foundation from gravity columns were doubled when the option to use forces from RAM Steel was selected.
Effect: Foundations were designed with too much load. Design was conservative unless uplift controlled. The error only affected the foundations, it did not affect the columns. The error only affected loads specified as Partition, it did not affect any other loads.


Some corrections were made to the link with ISM that resulted in some members being brought into the RAM Structural System incorrectly. The errors, when they occurred, were obvious.