Toward improved flange bracing requirements for metal building frame systems
Tran, Dai Quang
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This research investigates the application of the AISC Direct Analysis Method for stability bracing design of columns, beams, beam-columns and frames. Emphasis is placed on out-of-plane flange bracing design in metal building frame systems. Potential improvements and extensions to the 2005 AISC Appendix 6 stability bracing provisions are studied and evaluated. The structural attributes considered include various general conditions encountered in practical metal building design: unequal brace spacing, unequal brace stiffness, nonprismatic member geometry, variable axial load or bending moment along the member length, cross-section double or single symmetry, combined bending and axial load, combined torsional and lateral bracing from girts/purlins with or without diagonal braces from these components to the inside flanges, load height, cross-section distortion, and non-rigid end boundary conditions. The research addresses both the simplification to basic bracing design rules as well as direct computation for more complex cases. The primary goal is improved assessment of the demands on flange bracing systems in metal building frames.