Development of novel shelters and modular building systems using sheathed cold-formed steel framing systems

Development of novel shelters and modular building systems using innovative cold-formed steel framing systems

Overview

Safe shelters are needed in residential, school and commercial building systems to prevent the loss of lives during natural disasters.

This project aims to understand how the fire resistance of shelters can be increased by using:

  • innovative cold-formed stiffened channels as wall studs
  • innovative rivet-fastened hollow flange sections as floor joists
  • innovative lightweight steel frame wall and floor configurations

Research activities

Experimental and numerical studies will be used to enhance our understanding of these novel and more complex systems to develop safer shelter systems at low cost. They can also be used in many other applications based on the emerging modular building concept.

The modular unit comprises of two individual components: wall and floor. Both these components are designed so that structural efficiency is improved while maintaining the economy. The rivet fastened hollow flange section, shown in Figures 1 and 2, is proven to be adequately efficient and considerably cheaper than its welded hollow flange substitute for use as floor joists. On the other hand, the web-stiffened open channel section (Figure 3) used as vertical load bearing studs in walls, is also found to encompass both economy and structural efficiency. The prime source of innovation comes with new wall and floor configurations together with the commonly used gypsum plasterboard lining.

Expected findings

We are currently assessing fire performance of these wall and floor systems. Preliminary experimental results suggest that their fire performance can be significantly improved through simple innovations in LSF wall and floor systems. Therefore the developed shelter can potentially possess enhanced fire performance.


Funding / Grants

  • ARC DECRA (2015 - 2018)

Other Team Members


Diagram of rivet fastened hollow flange channel
Figure 1: Rivet fastened hollow flange channel
Figure 2: Rivet-fastened rectangular hollow flange channel beam (RHFCB)
Figure 2: Rivet-fastened rectangular hollow flange channel beam (RHFCB)
Figure 3: Stiffened channel section
Figure 3: Stiffened channel section

Sequentially coupled structural model of the rivet beam