Power, efficiency and productivity for steel, timber, aluminium and concrete structures
Metal 3D is an agile and efficient program brought about to carry out structural calculations in 3 dimensions of bars made up of steel, timber, aluminium, concrete or any other material, including the foundations with pad footings, piles and strap and tie beams. If the structure consists of timber, steel or aluminium bars, the program can redesign them and so obtain their maximum optimisation.
Metal 3D has been developed to offer the user a software program with greater assistance in the design of steel, aluminium and timber structures (design of connections, ties, bracing, etc).Metal 3D can operate as an independent program and within CYPECAD as an integrated 3D structure.
Metal 3D analyses any type of structure made up of steel, aluminium or timber bars and carries out all the checks stated in the selected code. It has been adapted to the CTE and to other national and international codes for steel, timber, aluminium and concrete (foundations) structures. The program undertakes a fire resistance analysis, design and check on all timber sections. For steel sections, the fire resistance is checked and the protective coating is designed. Earthquake analysis is also carried out (Modal Spectral Analysis) in accordance with the national and international code. 2nd order effects (P-delta) are considered with wind and earthquake loadcases.Consult our marketing department or your usual distributor of CYPE products for a list of the available national and international codes for this program and their corresponding prices.
It is possible to configure different limit states for each material.
The program also allows to visualise and print a report with the project properties, with and without earthquake loading, in which the partial safety coefficients (load increment) and the combination coefficients ψ for each type of load (nature) are displayed.
Metal 3D automatically generates the self weight of the introduced bars, creating a dead load loadcase. It is possible to add an infinite number of additional loadcases of the same or of a different nature (dead load, live load, wind, earthquake or snow).
Simple loadcases and their combination (compatible, incompatible and simultaneous) can be defined by the user. The program automatically generates the combination of these loadcases according to the previously indicated conditions.
For example, the program automatically generates the loadcase combination corresponding to a load situation composed of a general live load and a load trolley acting at various positions. The positions of the trolley are incompatible with one another but each one of them is compatible with the general live load and any other loadcases of a different nature.
The generated combination of the loadcases of the same nature can be viewed. This way, it is possible for the user to check whether or not the conditions are correct.
The program allows for multiple load types such as, for example, point, line, line with height variation, surface, surface with height variation, temperature increment and gradient, moments etc. The loads can be introduced on nodes and bars.
Surface loads are introduced on panels that have been geometrically defined by the user by means of a closed polygon. Loads can be applied on all the surface of the panel or on polygonal surfaces contained within the panel. The user also indicates the direction of the introduced one way spanning loads on the panel which should be parallel to one of the sides of the panel.
The distribution of all the loads applied on the panel is similar to that of simply supported elements and is carried out on the bars contained in the panel that are not parallel to the distribution direction. In the case of loads defined on the surface of the panel, the distribution will only affect those bars which are closest to the defined surface.
In the integrated 3D structures of CYPECAD it is also possible to define surface loads in the same way as in Metal 3D.
It is possible to define prescribed displacements in the fixities and supports, and prescribed rotations in the fixities. These displacements and rotations will cause forces to arise on the bars, and so when they are defined their effects have to be assigned to a loadcase.
The node type selection is very complete. The internal fixities and exterior restrictions of nodes can be defined. The exterior restrictions allow for the nodes to be defined as pinned, fixed or partially fixed, elastic support (springs), supports with free displacement in a plane or defined direction, etc.
Ties can be defined between nodes. These ties are used to indicate that two or more nodes have the same displacements for all the loadcases. This displacement match can be established in one, two or three directions in accordance with the X, Y and Z global axes. A reference number, applied to each group of nodes whose displacements are tied, is displayed on screen.
The user should take into account that for two or more nodes to have the same displacements, an element or construction arrangement should be present in the structure which will be able to materialise this displacement equality.Ties cannot be assigned to nodes making up the edges of braced rectangles when the tied displacement has its projection on the plane of the braced rectangle.
Metal 3D allows for the introduction of timber, steel, composite (steel and concrete) and aluminium bars. The program designs the section in order to obtain its optimum size.
For steel bars, the program uses rolled, cold formed and welded steel sections managed from its vast database made up of a large variety of sections available from main manufacturers and section tables. Composite sections can be created based on the simple sections using a welded connection, batten plates, lateral plates, etc…Haunches at bar ends; variable section bars; steel castellated beams with hexagonal, octagonal or circular openings; mixed bars (steel sections with a concrete slab) can be defined.
The steel bars can also be designed as ties or bracing.
In the Describe section dialogue box, the user can select the Tie option. When this is selected a dialogue appears giving an explanation of the method used and the necessary conditions for its design.
The fact that the ties or bracing are bars with a straight axis only admitting tension forces in the direction of their axis, implies that the way in which they are modelled would only be strictly exact if a non-linear analysis was to be carried out of the structure for each loadcase combination, in which all the bars whose axial force is in compression were to be deleted.
Additionally, to be able to carry out a dynamic analysis without taking into account those ties in compression, it would be necessary to carry out an analysis in the time domain with accelerograms.
As an approximation to the exact method, we propose an alternative method whose results, in the cases that comply with the following conditions, are sufficiently acceptable for the general practice of structure calculations with tie elements.
The method has the following limitations, whose compliance with the code is checked by the program:
- The tie element forms part of a bracing with its four edges within a frame, or three edges if the bracing reaches two exterior supports. Additionally, each braced frame has to form a rectangle (all four internal angles must be right angles).
- The axial stiffness of the ties (AE/L) is less than 10% of the axial stiffness of the elements making up the frame of the bracing.
- Each diagonal of the same stiffened rectangle must have the same transverse section.
In the 2008.1 Version New Features Manual, in the Calculations section of Metal 3D, or in the Describe section dialogue box (appears in the program when the user describes a bar as a tie) you may find more information on the analysis method applied on ties by the program.
Using the Aluminium and generic sections module of Metal 3D and Integrated 3D structures of CYPECAD, extruded aluminium bars of the alloys and tempers described in the Alloys and Tempers section, with the geometry indicated in Aluminium sections can be analysed and designed in accordance with Eurocode 9 EN 1999-1-1.
Within the Describe section dialogue box (Bar > Describe section), the aluminium section button is available which allows the user to assign an aluminium section to a bar from the section library included with the program or to define it geometrically.
The library contains a series of official sections which the user can configure. The range of sections available in the library and created by the user include:
- I sections
- Batten plates
- T sections
- Symmetrical angle
- Rectangular tube
- Circular hollow section
- Round bar
- Square bar
An extruded aluminium section editor has been implemented in the 2011.a version of the program, whose purpose is to aid users in defining their own transverse aluminium section designs. More information on the use of this type of sections can be found within the Special extruded aluminium sections explanation in the new features of Metal 3D and Integrated structures.
In the 2012.a version, improvements have been implemented with regards to the automatic calculation of the susceptibility to local buckling due to compression and in the design of special aluminium sections. More information can be found in the New features for aluminium sections article in the New features of the 2012 version in Metal 3D and Integrated 3D structures webpage.
Within the Describe material dialogue box (Bar > Describe material) the alloy of the extruded aluminium for the selected aluminium sections is chosen, as well as it temper. The available alloys with their corresponding tempers are:
Aluminium alloy Temper EN AW-5083 F, H111 and H112 EN AW-6060 T5, T6, T64 and T66 EN AW-6061 T4 and T6 EN AW-6063 T5, T6 and T66 EN AW-6005A T6 EN AW-6106 T6 EN AW-6082 T4, T5 and T6 EN AW-7020 T6
For timber sections, Metal 3D uses sawn wood (conifer and poplar species), sawn wood (frondescent species), homogenous glue laminated wood and combined glue laminated wood. Sections that can be defined include rectangular, with constant or variable section, and circular. Includes a library of timber sections that the user can configure and extend. The program also carries out a check on the fire resistance of the timber sections so they comply with the selected code, if the user activates the fire resistance check of timber sections.
Metal 3D allows for bars made up of concrete or any other material to be introduced.
Rectangular or circular concrete bars with constant depth can be introduced in the program as well as rectangular concrete bars with variable depth. The program calculates the forces to which these bars are submitted to and displays the results for each simple loadcase, combination or envelope. The program does not carry out a resistance check of the concrete bars, i.e., the bars are neither checked nor are their sections designed
Metal 3D allows for the user to define generic bars composed of any material. The program calculates the forces to which these bars are submitted to and displays the results for each simple loadcase. The program does not carry out a resistance check of the generic bars, i.e., the bars are neither checked nor are their sections designed. The user has to define the following properties of the bars once they have been positioned within the structure:
- Geometry of the section. The distances between the centre of gravity and the outer perimeter of the section measured in the four directions of the two main local axes of the section:
- Left width
- Right width
- Bottom depth
- Top depth
- Mechanical characteristics
- Shear area Avy
- Shear area Avz
- Bending inertia Iyy
- Bending inertia Izz
- Torsional inertia It
- Material characteristics
- Modulus of elasticity
- Poisson’s ratio
- Coefficient of thermal expansion
- Unit weight
Metal 3D allows the user to introduce the ß buckling coefficients or the buckling length, the moment coefficient or the C1 coefficient of the lateral buckling critical moment formulation (if the selected code defines it) of each bar. Generally speaking, each code offers values for these coefficients associated to different bending moment distributions.
The program also automatically calculates the buckling length of the bars according to an approximate method, based on commonly accepted formulae, which requires for the user to classify the structure as a sway frame or a non-sway frame. The user can also activate the lateral buckling check for any bar.
The program allows the user to limit the deflection of the bars so that when designing the sections of the bars, it takes into account the imposed restriction (as well as the stress, slenderness, bucking, etc). The user may limit the maximum and relative deflection, for both its absolute and relative values for its length between ends and inflexion points of the deformed shape. The deflection may be defined as secant or tangent to one of the ends. It is also possible to define an element composed of various aligned bars for which the program checks its deflection as if it were a single bar. The dialogue boxes limiting the deflection of the bars have help captions available that define perfectly the different types of deflection the user may limit and the length to use as reference for the relative deflection.
When introducing bars, it is possible to carry out adjustments, displacements and rotations with respect to their introduction axis. The eccentricity produced by these adjustments and displacements is taken into account in the analysis, and so the program allows for the user to consider the true relative position between bars.
The program alloys for xy and xz fixity coefficients or rotational stiffnesses in these planes at bar ends (bars or group of aligned bars forming an element). The option to define the rotational stiffness allows for joints to be modelled in which their stiffness to rotate is a fundamental consideration, as is in the case of bolted connections.
For each designed bolted connection, the program also analyses (for all the acting force combinations) the rotational stiffness of each element fixed to the connection and selects a rotational stiffness value for each element end, which will be that proposed by the user for the re-analysis of the structure.
Once the analysis has concluded, the program warns if the rotational stiffness introduced by the user for the elements fixed to the bolted connections differs in more than 20% to that proposed by the program or if it has not been defined.
Metal 3D allows the user to automatically assign the rotational stiffnesses proposed by the program and check any he or she wishes to check to decide in which case which rotational stiffnesses are to be adopted.
Using the new Fire resistance check module, Metal 3D carries out a fire resistance check and designs the protective coating of the steel sections comprising the structure in accordance with the Eurocode (EN 1992-1-2:2004 and EN 1993-1-2:2005) and CTE code.
The fire resistance check for timber sections in Metal 3D was already possible in previous versions and is carried out by a different module: the Timber sections module (common to Metal 3D and Integrated 3D sections of CYPECAD). This module designs the timber sections for fire exposure so they comply with the selected design code (CTE DB SE-M –Spain-, NBR 7190 or Eurocode 5).
The Joints modules designed by CYPE (Joints I. Welded. Warehouses with rolled and welded steel I sections, Joints II. Bolted. Warehouses with rolled and welded steel I sections, Joints III. Welded. Building frames with rolled and welded steel I sections, Joints IV. Bolted. Building frames with rolled and welded steel I sections, and Joints V. Flat trusses with hollow structural sections) can be used in CYPECAD and Metal 3D (including the Integrated 3D structures of CYPECAD).
The type of joints resolved by the Joints I, Joints II and Joints V modules are more applicable to warehouses designed in Metal 3D and the Integrated 3D structures of CYPECAD, whilst the joints designed by the Joints III and Joints IV modules are for more use in building structures composed of frames designed in CYPECAD. Nonetheless, each joint designed by any of the indicated modules is resolved in the same manner regardless of the program used, furthermore, the Joints I, Joints II, Joints III and Joints IV modules contain several types of joints common to both modules.
More information on the properties of these modules can be found at the following links:
Metal 3D contains several modules which calculate and design baseplates: Joints I, Joints II, Joints III and Joints IV modules and the Baseplates module. The properties of the baseplates designed using the Joints modules and designed using the Baseplates modules are described below.
The Joints I, Joints II, Joints III and Joints IV modules design welded baseplates with the following properties:
The baseplates module analyses and designs baseplates with the following properties:
The baseplate design options are configured in the Options dialogue box (Baseplates > Options). The values established here affect the baseplate design of the modules that design them (Joints I, Joints II, Joints III, Joints IV and Baseplates), exept the type of bolt anchorage which only intervenes in the analysis carried out by the Baseplates module.
The Joints I, Joints II, Joints III, Joints IV and Baseplates modules carry out the following code checks (assuming rigid plate theory):
Metal 3D analyses and designs footings and pile caps. Both foundation elements can be isolated or combined, i.e. they may support any number of columns.
Footings can be made up of reinforced or mass concrete, with constant or variable depth. The program can design them to be square, rectangular, eccentric, corner or edge centred. The analysis and design of the footings forms part of a module of Metal 3D.Pile caps allow for several piles. A wide range of types are available. They may hold 1, 2, 3 and 4 piles; linear and rectangular pile caps for any number of piles (from 3 to 30 per side); pentagonal pile caps for 5 and 6 piles, and hexagonal for 6 and 7 piles. The analysis and design of the pile caps is part of a module of Metal 3D.
The program offers the option of choosing the type of balancing of the ends of the strap beams by selecting the bearing pressure distribution acting below the footing in response to the soil, in order to calculate the forces on the strap beam and the pressures of the soil.
If this option is selected, the balancing of the beam is perfect, hence obtaining a rectangular pressure distribution in the soil.
The balancing of the beam is not perfect, i.e., a certain amount of rotation of the footing occurs resulting in a trapezoidal pressure distribution and therefore a reduction of the forces acting on the beam. If there is a trapezoidal pressure distribution below the footing, its resultant is displaced towards the column, which produces, approximately, a 10% moment reduction on the beam.
When a new job is created in Metal 3D, an assistant is displayed to help the user introduce the general data of the job:
The data of the material introduced in the assistant is the default data that will be assigned to each element that is introduced. Using the option Bar > Describe material, a material other than the default material can be assigned to any bar.
All the data introduced in the assistant can be modified once the assistant has closed. These changes can be carried out in the Job menu within the Structure tab and in the menu Job > General data of the Foundation tab. The Extruded aluminium sections option has been added to the Job menu so the default data for this material can be modified.
Metal 3D allows for structural analysis models to be imported by means of an IFC file. IFC files only containing the physical model and not the structural analysis model, do not contain any information Metal 3D can read.
In IFC files, the structural analysis model is composed of structural type entities, such as nodes, bars, loads, etc. The connection relationship between the nodes and bars is also defined using fixity conditions. It is similar to what a user defines in Metal 3D.
The entities Metal 3D imports from the IFC files are the following:
Metal 3D imports files generated in CAD programs with DWG and DXF format containing two and three dimensional data. Using these files, the geometry of the structure can be generated automatically (including selecting those elements to be imported classified by layer, entity, colour or linetype).
It is also possible to import DXF and DWG drawing files to use as templates. This way, the user can introduce the nodes and bars of the structure by snapping to the entities and elements of these files in the 2D windows of the program. The import process and use methodology of the DXF and DWG files is the same as in CYPECAD. The user has three buttons available in the tool bar which allow for these files to be managed:
Other tools are also available to facilitate data introduction: Zoom, Redraw, Orthogonal, undo, Redo, Repeat last element selection, etc. Object snaps can be used (end, mid point, perpendicular, nearest and intersection) as well as tracking (extend, perpendicular, orthogonal) on elements of the structure.
Using the view generation, it is possible to work with windows in 2D and 3D in a completely interactive manner and with complete connectivity. Additionally, in the 3D view, the visualised 2D plane is marked on screen.
Metal 3D also provides the user with the option to automatically generate elements, such as nodes, bars and spatial meshes made up of tetrahedrons. It is also capable of creating an unlimited number of parallel frames based on one.
The elements are dimensioned without having to introduce coordinates or rigid meshes. When a node or bar is introduced, the program assigns a set of coordinates to it which depend on the position of the cursor on the snapped reference line or lines. After this, the user can dimension the nodes or leave the assigned coordinates.
CYPECAD and Metal 3D offer the use of multiprocessors during their analysis.
To acquire these tools, CYPECAD and Metal 3D have two new common modules which allow for substantial periods of time to be saved during the analysis:
More information on these modules and a comparative study displaying the analysis duration with and without their use can be found in the Analysis using multiprocessors page.
The force and displacement diagrams and envelopes can be consulted graphically or analytically on screen.
The bar check tool on screen, (stress, denting, buckling, deflection…) allows for a manual or automatic correction to be undertaken to obtain its final dimension.
Provides the drawings of any view of the structure, with all the required information, including elevations with the real dimensions of the section. The drawings can be exported in DXF and DWG format or printed using a printer or plotter.
Generates 3D views with conical or isometric projection displaying the sections with their real size. These 3D views can be printed and exported in DXF, DWG, EMF, BMP and JPG formats.These 3D views can be printed and exported in DXF, DWG, EMF, BMP and JPG formats. The elements with textures resembling the real colours of their materials can be displayed. The user can represent the 3D view with or without the materials:
Free movement within the structure is permitted with conical perspective.
Provides node, bar and load data reports: reports containing results on the displacements, reactions, forces, stresses, deflections, footings, baseplates, etc of the structure. The takeoff report is also included. These reports can be exported in TXT, HTML, PDF and RTF formats. A preliminary view of these reports can also be obtained.
CYPECAD, Metal 3D and the Integrated 3D structures of CYPECAD generate detailed reports on the ultimate limit state checks of steel and aluminium sections.
These reports contain all the checks carried out by the program to design the structures and constitute an important document with which the user can:
The level of detail of these reports also acts as a detailed guide so the user can know all the checks the section is submitted to.
CYPECAD, the Integrated 3D structures of CYPECAD and Metal 3D can export the analysed and designed structure to Tekla Structures.
More information on the export options can be found at Export to Tekla Structures.
CYPECAD, the Integrated 3D structures of CYPECAD and Metal 3D as of the 2009.1.d program version can export the analysed and designed structure to TecnoMETAL 4D.
More information on the export options can be found at Export to TecnoMETAL 4D.
CIS/2 (CIMsteel Integration Standards) is a standard interchange file to facilitate data flow between IT applications which intervene in the analysis, design and fabrication processes of steel structures.
CYPECAD, Metal 3D and the Integrated 3D structures of CYPECAD allow for the nodes and bars of the introduced and designed structures to be exported in CIS/2 format; recognised by NIST (National Institute of Standards and Technology).
Graitec’s Advance Steel is a software application used for modelling 3D steel structures for which correctly imports CIS/2 formats generated by Metal 3D and the Integrated 3D structures of CYPECAD.
More information on the export options can be found at Export in CIS/2 format.
Metal 3D has a series of modules available which can be acquired separately:
There are two reduced versions of Metal 3D:
Metal 3D limited to 2 dimensions: Metal 3D version limited to a two dimensional analysis. The same optional modules are available as those for Metal 3D.
Metal 3D student version: Metal 3D version limited to 50 nodes and 50 bars. It does not include section design or any of the Metal 3D modules.