Structural Systems-Foundation & Loads

  • The superstructure is the vertical extension of the foundation system and consists of the columns, beams, and load-bearing walls that support the floor and roof structures.
  • The foundation system is the substructure that forms the base of a building, anchors it firmly to the ground, and supports the building elements and spaces above. These systems must work together to support the
  •  following types of loads:

  1. Dead Loads: How a building is constructed determines its dead load, which is a static vertical load comprising the weight of its structural and nonstructural components, including any equipment permanently attached to the structure.
  2.  Live Loads: How a building is used determines its live load, which is a movable or moving load comprising the weight of its occupants and any mobile equipment and furnishings.
  3. In cold climates, collected snow and water impose an additional live load on a building.
  4. Dynamic Loads: Where a building is located determines its potential loading from the dynamic forces of wind and earthquake.

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