RAM Structural System CONNECT Edition Update 7 Release 15.07 Release Notes
Release Date: January 23, 2018
This document contains important information regarding changes to the RAM Structural System. It is important that all users are aware of these changes. Please distribute these Release Notes and make them available to all users of the RAM Structural System.
Bentley is in the process of requiring all users to sign-in in order to use any Bentley programs. This is being done now in anticipation of the implementation of powerful and customized features intended to better help users perform their jobs. Moving to this sign-in requirement now better facilitates our implementing those new features.
If you do not already have a Bentley ID, go to http://www.bentley.com/profile and select the Sign Up Now link.
Bentley CONNECT already offers several benefits, and the value continues to increase. Listed here are two key features:
When you sign in to your Bentley account you now have easy access to CONNECTION Center. This personalized portal gives you easy access to Usage reports, site configuration information, downloads, and Learning information on webinars, seminars and events, and includes a transcript listing the Bentley courses that you have completed. Your personal portal also lists your recent projects with a portal into analytics on that project. CONNECTION Center can be accessed by selecting the Sign In command in the upper right corner of the RAM Manager screen.
All of Bentley’s CONNECT Edition programs, including RAM Structural System, allow models to be associated with a project. Multiple models, from any of the Bentley products, can be associated with a given project. This simplifies the process of keeping track of work done for a project, and will enable analytics to be performed and reported for the project.
A ProjectWise Projects portal enables you and your project teams to see project details required to evaluate team activity and understand project performance.
When a model is Saved the program will ask for a Project to which the file is to be associated. Projects can be registered (created) from your Personal Portal, or from the Assign Project dialog by selecting the + Register Project command.
The Tutorial Manual has not been updated but is still valid. The appearance of some parts of the program in this version may differ from that shown in the Tutorial.
This version automatically converts databases created in previous versions to the new database format. Note that a backup file is created automatically when a database is converted; the name of the database is the same, with “Orig” and the version number appended to the name. The file has an extension of “.zip” and is located in the same directory as the original database.
The previous steel tables and load combination templates supplied with the program will be replaced with new tables and templates of the same name. If you have customized any Master or Design tables or load combination templates supplied with the program without changing the file names, those file names should be renamed from the original RAM table names prior to installation to prevent your changes from being lost.
This version can be found on the Bentley Software Fulfilment web page by logging into the Personal Portal or the Enterprise Portal and selecting the Software Downloads icon. Perform a search for “RAM Structural System”, select any of the RAM Structural System modules (e.g., RAM Modeler; they all use the same installer), and select the latest version of the RAM Structural System.
Product Licensing FAQ:
Appendix C contains a document describing features available in the RAM Structural System to help prevent inadvertent use of unlicensed modules. Refer to that document for more information.
Security Risk Advisory:
Not applicable to this release. Every effort is made to ensure that there are no security risks in the software. There are no known security issues, no issues were addressed in this version.
New Features and Enhancements:
For details on these new features and enhancements, refer to the manual .pdf files available from the Help menu in each module or from the Manuals folder on your hard drive.
Updated Steel Joist Tables
The steel joist tables, RAMSJIK.JST, RAMSJILH.JST, RAMSJIDH.JST, and RAMSJI.JST, have been updated based on the 44th Edition of the Steel Joist Institute Load Tables and Weight Tables for Steel Joists and Joist Girders. The previous tables were based on the values given in the SJI catalogues up to and including the 42nd Edition.
K-series joists: There was a significant decrease in the weights listed for many of the joists. This has an impact on the “economical” order of the joists; with the new tables different joists may be selected as most economical versus those selected using the old table. The new tables will give a more realistic listing of weights in the Takeoff report.
LH- and DLH-series joists: Previously the capacities listed in the tables were based on the Clear Span; the capacities listed in the new tables are based on total Span (center-to-center of supports). The impact of this is that the new tables give a slightly higher capacity than the old tables, for a given span. In addition, the 80”, 88”, 96”, 104”, 112”, and 120” deep DLH joists have now been added to the table.
Diaphragm Stiffness Modifiers in RAM Concrete
The diaphragm stiffness modifiers specified in the Modeler have now been implemented in RAM Concrete Analysis. Previously they were only implemented in RAM Frame Analysis.
Diaphragm Type Assignments
Previously if floor diaphragms were added or deleted in the Modeler, all of the diaphragm type assignments (Rigid, Semirigid, Flexible or Pseudo-flexible) were reset to Rigid. Now those assignments are preserved, only the new diaphragms are set to the default of Rigid.
SidePlate Geometric Compatibility
For the geometric compatibility check performed for SidePlate connections, the limit on the difference between column width and beam width has been updated to 1.0 in. or larger (the previous limit was 1.5 in.).
IBC 2018 / ASCE 7-16 Load Combinations
The load combinations of IBC 2018 / ASCE 7-16 have been implemented and may be selected for steel and concrete design.
The speed of transferring models from ISM has been significantly increased for models with hanging columns.
This version contains two powerful features that have been designated Technology Preview features. They are features that are in a state that would previously been referred to as a Beta version. These two features are Analytical Insights and SQLite database of result. It is likely that these features will continue to undergo revisions based on feedback from users. Care should be taken if these are used for actual design, because they are still in the process of being revised; they have not gone through the rigorous testing process. They are being made available so that you can use them with real models in real design situations, and provide us with feedback and suggestions for making these features more useable and productive.
Analytical Insights – Technology Preview
The Analytical Insights feature analyzes your model and compares them with a set of Structural Performance Indicators (SPI). These SPI’s can be configured to conform to your office standards and practices, and prioritized according to their importance. Your model is then scored based on these SPI’s helping you identify possible changes to the model to make it more economical or constructable. See Appendix A at the end of this document for more information.
SQLite Database of Analysis and Design Results – Technology Preview
In order to more easily access the geometry and analysis data, this data is now written out to files from which the data can be accessed. A report generator is provided that can be used to create a .xlsx file that can then be used in spreadsheets in Excel. The file can be customized to contain the information that you want made available. See Appendix B at the end of this document for more information.
Some program errors have been corrected for Version 15.07. Corrections made to graphics, reports, Modeler functions, program crashes, etc that were considered minor are not listed here. The noteworthy error corrections are listed here in order to notify you that they have been corrected or to assist you in determining the impact of those errors on previous designs. These errors were generally obscure and uncommon, affecting only a very small percentage of models, or had no impact on the results. The errors, when they occurred, were generally quite obvious. However, if there is any question, it may be advisable to reanalyze previous models to determine the impact, if any. In each case the error only occurred for the precise conditions indicated. Those errors that may have resulted in un-conservative designs are shown with an asterisk. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause.
TABLE EDITOR CRASH: The Table editor, for editing the steel Master table and Design Steel tables would crash when launched.
Effect: The Table editor was unusable.
RAM Concrete Beam
CONCRETE BEAM: When analyzing beams with top bars that have hooks somewhere along the length of the span, the positive capacity tapered to zero at the location of the top hooks.
Effect: Conservatively reported no capacity at those locations.
EXCESSIVE BAR SPACING WARNINGS: Program may have incorrectly reported errors due to excessive spacing between longitudinal bars.
Effect: Erroneous bar spacing error messages.
CONCRETE BEAM: The check in ACI 318-08 21.2.2 only applies to beams in ordinary moment frames in SDC B, however it was being performed on all ordinary moment frames irrespective of category.
Effect: Unnecessary check performed on OMF beams.
AS3600-09 CAPACITY GRAPH: On rare occasions the flexural capacity graph would drop to a value of 0, creating a ‘notch’ in the displayed capacity.
Effect: Graphic error only.
AS3600-09 SHEAR DESIGN LOCATION: The program performed the shear design at centerline of support rather than at column face even if the option to perform shear design at column face had been selected in the design criteria.
Effect: Conservative. The program ignored the criteria to design for shear at column face rather than centerline of support.
RAM Concrete Column
ASTM METRIC REINFORCEMENT: When designing concrete columns using the ASTM metric table of reinforcement bars, a column with #10 ties and #25 longitudinal bars was erroneously reported as failing the requirements of ACI 318-05 Sec. 184.108.40.206 (because the roundoff for metric resulted in the bar being too small.
Effect: Permissible configurations of metric #10 ties may have been flagged as unacceptable.
ACI 318 SHEAR CAPACITY*: If user-specified tie spacing exceeded the allowable spacing d/2, Vs was not being set to 0.0 in the calculation of the shear capacity of the cross-section.
Effect: Incorrect shear capacity.
ACI PROBABLE MOMENTS OF SMF COLUMNS: During the calculation of Columns Mpr, the program calculated the Probable Moments strengths twice, once for each axis, but set the first axis results to 0 and saved only the values of the last calculated axis.
Effect: The probable Moment strength in SMF columns was only obtained correctly in one axis.
ACI SUM COLUMN CAPACITY IN SPECIAL PROVISIONS - SMF REPORT: In the "Column Versus Beam Flexural Strength" section of the "Special Provisions - SMF" Report, the value listed for "Sum Column Capacity" did not match the sum of the column moments capacities shown previously. Incorrect values (corresponding to the maximum moment strength developed at the column) were listed for the Sum Column Capacity section.
Effect: The "Column Versus Beam Flexural Strength check" was correctly applied but incorrect intermediate values may have been shown for the "Sum Column Capacity" result. This was a report error only.
RAM Concrete Shearwall
SHEAR WALL STRESSES: The feature to graphically display wall stresses did not function.
Effect: Wall stress contours could not be viewed.
TWO CURTAINS OF REINFORCING: When designing a shear wall to ACI318-14, the program may have reported a design warning regarding two reinforcement curtains not being present even when there were.
Effect: Erroneous warning message.
RAM Frame – Analysis
ASCE 7 STABILITY REPORT: When the report was generated for a model using SI units, the values for shear and drift were not correct (wrong unit conversion factors applied). The reported stability factors were still correct.
Effect: Reporting error only.
DIAPHRAGM MASS DIALOG: If any changes were made in the Loads – Masses command and if the option "Uniformly Distribute Total Mass Over Diaphragm" was selected in Criteria - Diaphragm command, those changes were not applied to the semirigid diaphragms if structure was already meshed.
Effect: Analysis was carried out without applying those changes. Note that if any other changes were made to the model that caused the diaphragms to re-mesh, the changes were then correctly applied.
DIAPHRAGM CHANGES FOUND WARNING: When invoking RAM Frame, a message would often erroneously be given, “Diaphragm Changes Found”, even when no changes had actually been made.
OPTIMIZED FOOTING LARGER THAN MINIMUM: When the design of a foundation was controlled by the distance from the baseplate/face-of-column to edge of footing, the design chosen was not the smallest design possible.
Effect: The footing dimension could be one plan dimension increment larger than need be.
CONTINUOUS FOUNDATION TAKEOFF REPORT: Weight was reported incorrectly for continuous foundations on the material Takeoff report when viewed in SI or Metric units.
Effect: This was a report error only.
SOIL COMBINATION FACTOR ON WIND: In the Soil bearing combinations for IBC 2015 / ASCE 7-10 and IBC 2012 / ASCE 7-10 the factor on Wind load in the combinations that include Snow uplift (from the backspan reaction of a cantilever beam with snow) was incorrect, using 0.75 instead of 0.45.
Effect: The combinations D + 0.75Sn + 0.75W and D + 0.75Sn - 0.75W were used to check soil bearing instead of D + 0.75Sn + 0.45W and D + 0.75Sn - 0.45W. This error only occurred when Snow on cantilevers was creating an uplift on the member supporting that beam's backspan.
SQLite Database Report Generator
SQLITE SAVED REPORTS BROKEN: SQLite report templates could not be saved.
Effect: Reports had to be recreated every time.
SQLITE GEOMETRY EXPORT: Member labels were off by 1 (reported 1 too high) for Beams, Columns, Braces and Walls.
Effect: Could be confusing. Did not impact design results
SQLITE REPORT NODE NUMBERS: The node numbers for lateral members were reported incorrectly (reduced by 1). Rarely, nodes of gravity members were reported to be something other than zero which is incorrect since node numbers are only relevant to lateral members.
Effect: Report error only but could be misleading.
REPORTS SAVED TO WORKING FOLDER: SQLite Viewer reports were saved to the working folder.
Effect: Wrong place for reports.
Technology Preview – Analytical Insights
Information on Analytical Insights can be found at this link: Appendix A Analytical Insights.
Technology Preview – RAM Structural System data available through SQLite
Enabling the Feature
This feature is now automatically available. In a previous version (v15.04) it was necessary to modify the ramis.ini file in order to enable it. That is no longer necessary. If you modified the ramis.ini file previously by adding the line WriteDataToExternalDatabase=1, you can now delete it.
Two SQLite files are generated by the RAM Structural System. A file with geometric data can be created by invoking the Post-Processing – Export Geometry to SQlite command in RAM Manager. The second file is created in RAM Frame as part of the Analysis. To write the analysis results to SQLite, select the check box at the bottom of the dialog that says "Write Results to SQLite database."
These files are part of the model. They are initially written to the working directory and then saved into the .rss file.
A report generator that reads the SQLite database tables and creates reports in Excel has been added to the RAM Manager. The commands to run the viewer are located under the Post-Processing menu. The report generator can be run in two different ways: