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Research, Development, and Practice in Structural Engineering and Construction

Vimonsatit, V., Singh, A., Yazdani, S. (eds.)


ASEA-SEC-1, Perth, November 28Decmber 2, 2012

DESIGN OPTIMIZATION OF INDUSTRIAL PORTAL


FRAME WITH OVERHEAD CRANES
Mehdi Shokouhian1 and Reza Sadeghi2
1

Department of Civil Engineering, Tsinghua University, Beijing, China


E-mail: shm-10@mails.tsinghua.edu.cn
2
Bryant Concepts Pty Ltd, U3 66 Rundle St, Kent Town, SA 5067, Australia
E-mail: Reza@bryantconcepts.com.au

Portal frames are the most commonly used structural forms for single-storey industrial
structures. For structures of this type, an unsuitable layout plan can increase total cost of
construction; hence a suitable layout plan is of importance to achieve an economical design.
This may require several trial designs. The optimization study presented here examines some
key geometric and material parameters of industrial portal frame structures with different over
head cranes capacities. The key parameters considered herein are: span of portal frame, portal
frame spacing, overhead crane capacity and material properties of the single and double bay
portal frames. The internal forces and deflections are calculated under the applicable gravity
(considering the action of both crane and its load) by using elastic first-order static analyses,
utilizing the finite element method. The current study examines the function of each of the
above-mentioned parameters and presents the optimum parameters in terms of weight per unit
area of portal frame. The results are presented in graphical form suitable for the preliminary
stages of design of industrial portal frame structures with overhead cranes.

Keywords: Portal frame, optimization, Industrial building, Steel structures, Geometric and material effects,
Overhead cranes.

Introduction

Single-storey steel portal frames offer a cost


effective form of structure for most singlestorey buildings where a large, open space is
required. These types of structures can be
used for industrial, airplane hangars, storage
facility and the like. The major components
of a portal frame building are a series of
parallel portal frames which are placed at a
1

regular spacing. The economy of the structure


is generally affected by the requirements for
spans and the spacing of the frames. Planning
column locations to avoid interference with
any equipment, fulfilling the functional
requirements of the building and minimizing
the building layout plan to achieve a low cost
solution is of importance.

Design optimization of Portal Frames with Overhead Cranes


M. Shokouhian, R. Sadeghi

Background

Extensive studies on the structural cost of


single-storey buildings have been carried out
by Horridge and Monis in 1986. Gurlement et
al, 2001, presented a practical method for
single-storey steel structure, using a discrete
minimum weight and Eurocode design. In
2003, Kamal et al, carried out a weight
optimization of two-hinged steel portal frames
under multiple loadings. Kravanja and Zula,
2009, presented the simultaneous cost,
topology
and
standard
cross-section
optimization of single storey industrial steel
building structures employing the mixedinteger non-linear programming approach. Liu
Feng et al performed an optimization study on
the economical dimensions and optimum
design of portal frames, both without cranes
and with light cranes. This study follows their
works and performs a cost optimization study
on portal frames with a range of crane
capacities from light to medium capacity. The
results presented herein can be used in the
preliminary stages of the design of industrial
portal frame structures with overhead cranes.
3

350 MPa steel grades which are two common


steel grades in the construction of this type of
structures. The soil is also assumed to have a
conventional load bearing capacity and the
cost of footing design is not considered in this
study. The cost optimization of portal frame
building on low bearing soils is not within the
scope of this paper as the cost optimization
may be greatly affected by the geotechnical
properties of the soil and consequently the
selection of clear span and portal spacing may
be governed by accounting the bearing
capacity of the soil.

Problem Definition and Assumptions:

The cost optimization of a industrial portal


frame is a function of diverse parameters such
as: the framing system (tapered girder,
portalized roof truss, lattice column etc), the
span of the frames, the spacing between the
portal frames, the pitch of the roof, different
steel grades, different gravity loads (dead, live
and snow loads), lateral loads (wind and
earthquake),
load
combinations.
Simplification of the problem indicates that
the most significant parameters are: the span
of portal frame, portal frames spacing
(distance between the frames), overhead crane
capacity and material properties. This study
focus of the effect of above mentioned
parameters in single and double bay portal
frames for light and medium overhead
capacity cranes ranging from 5 to 60 ton. The
steel materials considered herein, are 250 and
2

Figure 1 Portal frame configuration (a) single bay


(b) multi bay

Considered in this study is a zero-pitched (flat


roof) portal frame with a built up tapered
section rafter and lattice column system,
designed to carry the gravity loads of cranes,
dead, live, and snow loads. The geometry of
the lattice column is constructed from hot
rolled universal beam (UB) or universal
column (UC) sections and light-gauge steel is
used for cladding.
A distributed load
including a gravity load of the purlins and
cladding, a live load together with a snow load
equaling 2 KPa is assumed on the roof. The
cranes load is as per AS1418, Cranes, hoist
and winches. The effect of lateral forces such
as wind and seismic has been ignored. The

Research, Development, and Practice in Structural Engineering and Construction


Vimonsatit, V., Singh, A., Yazdani, S. (eds.)
ASEA-SEC-1, Perth, November 28Decmber 2, 2012

summary of geometric parameters considered


in this study is shown in table 1.
Table 1. Geometric Parameters of Portal Frame
Crane Capacity Span
frame spacing
tonne
(m)
(m)
5
10
5
20
15
6
40
20
7
60
25
8
30
9
35
10
12

As shown in table 1, the portal frame spacings


of 5,6,7,8,9,10 and 12m are considered for
crane ranging from 5 to 60 ton for a 20m span
portal frame. Single span, Span=20m
120

5t
20t
40t
60t

Weight per unit area(kg/m )

110

Structural modeling and design

100

90

80

70

60
4

10

11

12

13

Double
Span=20m
Portal span,
Frame Spacing
(m)

(2-a)

100

The internal forces and deflections are


calculated under the applicable gravity loads
(crane, dead, live and snow) by using the
elastic first-order static analysis, utilizing
Strand7, finite element analysis software. To
achieve a cost-effective design, the nominal
bending moment and axial force are
considered as close as possible to the section
capacity of the member.
Based on the
extracted actions and deflections, structural
members have been designed manually in
accordance
with
AS4100-1998
Steel
Structures.

Weight per unit area(kg/m )

5.1 Effect of portal frame spacing:

5t
20t
40t
60t

90

80

70

60

50
4

10

11

12

13

14

(2-b)

Portal span,
Frame Spacing
(m)
Single
Span=30m
120

Results and Discussion:


5t
20t
40t
60t

Weight per unit area(kg/m )

110

There are numerous possible cases of the span


width and the spacing between the portal
frames, for a given crane capacity. To
achieve optimum values of these parameters,
some simplification is required: after
extracting the optimum value of a given
parameter and assuming it as a constant, the
effect of other parameters are investigated and
their optimum values are obtained. Finally the
results based on the defined parameters are
presented in terms of weight of the steelworks
per unit area of the building.

100

90

80

70
4

10

11

Portal Frame Spacing (m)

12

13

14

(2-c)

Figure 2- Optimal Frame Spacing Span (a) a 20m


single-bay (b) a 20m double-bay portal frame (c)
30m span single-bay.

Design optimization of Portal Frames with Overhead Cranes


M. Shokouhian, R. Sadeghi

Based on the results presented in section 5.1,


and taking the spacing of the frames 7m, as a
constant, the optimum span of single and
double-bay portal frames are investigated and
results are shown
in span,
figure
3.a and 3.b.
Single
L=7m

A relative weight comparison between a


double and single-bay portal frame with
several various spacings between the
frames are shown for different crane
capacities in figures 4a to 4d. Generally,
the weight difference between double and
Span=20m, 5t Crane
75

70

5t
20t
40t
60t

110

60

55

Single-bay
Double-bay

10

11

12

13

(4-a)

Portal Frame spacings


90

Span=20m, 20t Crane

85

80
80

70

60
10

15

20

25

30

35

40

Double Span(m)
span, L=7m

(3-a)

110

5t
20t
40t
60t

100
2

75

70

65

Single-bay
Double-bay

60

90

10

11

12

13

(4-b)

Portal frame spacing


80

Span=20m, 40t Crane

100

70
95

60
2

Weight per unit area(kg/m )

Weight per unit area(kg/m )

65

50

100

Weight per unit area(kg/m )

Weight per unit area(kg/m )

120

5.3 Comparison between spacing in single


and doublebay portal frames

5.2 Effect of span of a portal frame

ton crane in double-bay portal frame. As


shown, the optimal span increases when a
higher crane capacity is used.

Weight per unit area(kg/m )

As shown in figures 2a and 2b, in most cases,


7m spacing between portal frames is the most
economical spacing for a given overhead
crane. Horridge and Morris (1986) in their
paper concluded that, 7.5m is the most
economical spacing for a portal frame
spanning over 20m. To be sure about the
results, a 30m span portal frame is also
considered and results as shown in figure 2.C
indicate that 7m is the optimal portal spacing.
The optimal spacing is more evident for
higher capacity cranes or wider span.

50
10

15

20

25

Span(m)

30

35

40

(3-b)

Figure 3- Optimum span for portal frame (a) singlebay (b) double-bay portal frame.

For example, a 25m span is the optimum span


for 60 ton crane in both single and double-bay
portal frame and 15m is the optimal span for 5
4

90

85

80

Single-bay
Double-bay

75

70
4

10

Portal frame spacing (m)

11

12

13

(4-c)

Research, Development, and Practice in Structural Engineering and Construction


Vimonsatit, V., Singh, A., Yazdani, S. (eds.)
ASEA-SEC-1, Perth, November 28Decmber 2, 2012
Portal frame spacing 7m - 20t Crane

Span=20m, 60t Crane


90

120
115

Weight per unit area(kg/m )

Weight per uni area(kg/m )

85

110
105
100
95
90

Single-bay
Double-bay

85

80

75

70

Single-Bay
Double-Bay

65

60

80
4

10

11

12

10

13

15

20

25

30

(5-b)

105

Weight per unit area (kg/m )

100

single bay portal frames reduces when the


spacing changes relative to the optimum
portal spacing. This means using a doublebay portal frame over a single-bay portal
frame is the most justifiable at the optimum
portal spacing where the largest weight
difference is evident.

95

90

85

80

Single-bay
Double-bay

75

70
10

15

20

25

35

(5-c)

Portal frame Spacing 7m - 60t Crane


Single-Bay
Double-Bay

Weight per unit area (kg/m )

120

Similar to section 4.3, a relative weight per


unit area difference between single and
double-bay configuration are shown in figures
5a to 5d. Generally, the weight difference
between double and single bay portal frames
reduces when the span increases relative to the
optimum portal span. This means using a
double-bay portal frame over a single-bay
portal frame is the most justifiable at the
optimum span where the largest weight
difference is evident.

30

Span (m)

5.4 Comparison between spans of a portal


frame in single and double bay portal frames
110

100

90

80

10

15

20

25

Span (m)

30

35

(5-d)

Figure 5 - Effect of span of portal frames for


different crane capacity

Portal frame spacing 7m - 5t Crane

85

80
2

40

Portal frame spacing 7m - 40t Crane

Figure 4- Effect of span of a portal frame in single


and double-bay portal frames

Weight per unit area (kg/m )

35

Span (m)

(4-d)

Portal frame spacing (m)

5.5 Effect of material

75

A steel material with yield strength


ranging between 250 and 350 MPa are
considered in this study. This is the range
of the steel that most steelworks are done.
Figure 6 and 7 show the effect on
optimized weight of a portal frame. As it

70

65

60

55

Single-bay
Double-bay

50
10

15

20

25

Span (m)

30

35

(5-a)

Design optimization of Portal Frames with Overhead Cranes


M. Shokouhian, R. Sadeghi

4- The weight difference between double


and single-bay portal frames reduces
when either the span or portal spacing
changes relative to their optimum values.
This means using a double-bay portal
frame over a single-bay portal frame is
the most justifiable at the optimum span
where the largest weight difference is
evident.

is evident, using different steel grades, the


extremums in either of the diagrams
follow a similar pattern.
It is
recommended to use higher steel grades
for higher crane capacities.
Portal frame spacing 7m - 20t Crane
90

Weight per unit area (kg/m )

85

References

80

75

Journal Papers

70

Fy=250 MPa
Fy=350 MPa

65

10

15

20

25

30

35

Span(m)

Figure 6- Effect of steel grades for different span


20t crane
Portal frame spacing 7m - 60t Crane

Weight per unit area (kg/m )

120

Fy=250 MPa
Fy=350 MPa

110

100

90

80

70
10

15

20

25

30

35

Span(m)

Figure 7- Effect of steel grades for different span


60t crane

Results:

This study focuses on the optimum geometric


and material properties of an industrial portal
frame with light to medium overhead crane.
These results to be presented are as follow:
1- In most cases, 7m is the optimal spacing
between the portal frames for single and
double bay portal frames.
2- Optimum span of a portal frame increases
when a higher crane capacity is used.
3- It is recommended to use higher steel
grades for structural members when
higher crane capacities are utilized.

Feng L., Bing G., Changbing C., Gang D.


Economical Dimensions and Optimum Initial
Design of Portal Frame, Steel construction
(Chinese) Journal 2003(1). Vol 18, No.63
Kamal OA, El-Mahdy OO, El-Komy GA.
Optimum design of one-bay portal steel frames.
J Eng Appl Sci 2003:72341.
Kravanja. S , Zula.T, Cost optimization of
industrial steel building structures Advances in
Engineering Software Management, Elsevier,
41 (2010) 442450, April , 2009.
Gurlement G, Targowski R, Gutkowski W,
Zawidzka J, Zawidzki J., Discrete minimum
weight design of steel structures using EC3
code. Struct Multidisc Optim 2001;22:3227
Books
Woolcock S., Kitipornchai S., Bradford. M. A.,
G.A. Haddad, Design of Portal Frame
Buildings Including Crane Runway Beams and
Monorails, 4th ed., Australian Steel Institute
Sydney Australia 2011.
King C.M, Design of Steel portal frames for
Europe, The Steel Construction Institute,
Silwood Park, Ascot, Berkshire, SL5 7QN
AS4100-1998 Steel structures, STANDARDS
AUSTRALIA, ISBN 0 7337 1981 3
AS1418
Cranes,
hoists
and
winches,
STANDARDS AUSTRALIA
Proceeding Papers
HORRIDGE, J.F. and MORRIS, L.J. Single Story
Building Cost Considerations, Pacific Structural
Steel Conference, New Zealand Heavy
Engineering Research Associations Aug 265285,1986