Analysis, design, and construction of tilt-up wall panel

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Virginia Tech

The idea of tilt-up construction started in America in the early I900’s. In the beginning, this technique was mainly used on structures such as industrial warehouses and factories. However, recent developments and improvements in tilt-up construction technique and accessories have enabled this building method to be applied to many architecturally appealing offices and residential structures.

There are many details the design-build team must consider to ensure the success of a tilt-up project. The floor slab must be designed for panel casting and to withstand the loading of the mobile crane which will be used to lift the panel. The crane capacity affects the panel size and weight. Proper curing and bondbreaker application are very important to reduce bonding and to ensure clear cleavage between concrete surfaces. Changing rigging configuration consumes expensive crane time and must be reduced to minimum possible. The availability of ground-release quick connect/disconnect tilt—up hardware improves workers safety and speeds up the erection process substantially.

Although the stress analysis of simple wall panels during erection can be done by hand, panels with more complicated geometry or with openings, are more efficiently analysed with a computer. Many manufacturers have technical services to help in the design of insert layout so that the concrete will not be over stressed when the panel is tilted into position. After the panel is plumbed, it is braced temporarily before the final connection is made. For in-place loading there are now design aids available which ease the design process. When properly designed and built, tilt—up has proved to be a fast, efficient, and economical building construction technique.