Parallel lamella dome under wind and snow loads

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Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University


A well structured computer program has been developed to perform geometrically nonlinear finite element analysis of space trusses and to study the sensitivity of parallel lamella dome under wind and snow loads. The modified Riks/Wempner method is used to perform the prebuckling and postbuckling analysis. The European Convention for Constructional Steelwork (ECCS code) is used as the code of practice for design wind pressures on domes.

Failures of domes have occurred during snow storms and have attributed to heavy local snow concentrations. Most codes of practice do not provide design wind and snow loads for domes, and a few international codes do show significant differences in the distributions of design wind pressure for domes. Moreover, current design practices for domes do not reflect the possibility of heavy local snow concentrations. Since wind load data is widely varied among the codes, and specific information on local snow concentrations is not available, the study of the behavior of a full-size lamella dome under different wind pressures and various snow distributions will be carried out with the finite element analysis, and critical load combinations will be obtained with the aid of stability boundary. The proposed study is expected to provide guidelines for the determination of critical wind and snow load conditions.