Designing industrial piping systems is quite challenging, given the complexity of steel structures and the diversity of pipe supports and loading conditions. The choice of every component must meet the engineering specifications and be easy to connect whilst matching the required sizes. Although modular steel solves diverse industrial pipe support challenges, engineers make several choices regarding frame designs, sizes and connection methods. Here is a simple guide for choosing steel configurations by analysing loading limits and allowable deflection for selected frame configurations.
Standard frame configurations and loading
One of Anchorage’s objectives is to meet pipe support needs in different industrial applications. The design and fabrication of the modular frames, beams, brackets and clamps follow approved piping standards for optimum usability as load-bearing structures.
Anchorbeam sections are designed following Eurocode 3 (EN1993) standards and can be used in different configurations for piping support. These lightweight, easy-to-install structures have a safety factor of 1.35. Different frame configurations can support a variety of loads that include:
When using modular steel structures as pipe supports, they are subject to one or a combination of the loads mentioned above. Deflection levels under each setup depend on the pipe loads. The design of our modular steel complies with internationally approved standards to guarantee safety in different pipe support applications.
Anchorframe structures undergo rigorous testing to establish the loading limits and to assign appropriate working loads. The testing process ensures that the allowable deflection is within the required limit. Here is a technical summary of the allowed load limits for specific frame lengths.
Each frame is assigned a factor of safety which is critical for calculating serviceability limits and ensuring applied loads do not cause extreme deflection.
Applying the right working load
The loading capacity of Anchorframe modular products is guided by Fz, which is the allowable vertical load acting against the frame. The designed Fz limit complies with a specified deflection limit. Therefore, when engineers define pipe loads, they consider the total pipe weight. The weight of the loaded pipe should not exceed the permissible Fz quantity.
Longitudinal loads acting on the frame are defined as Fx. These loads act on the modular steel structure simultaneously with the vertical loads. The allowable longitudinal forces should not exceed 20% of the allowable vertical loads.
Learn more about Anchorframe lodas here.
Complex loading scenarios
In an industrial setup, pipe supports handle loads from three different directions.
Overlooking such considerations exposes the frames to premature failure. Anchorframe modular steel structures are tested for load-bearing capabilities by applying loads in three directions. However, verifying the allowable load limit when testing steel structures using loads applied in three directions can be challenging because the loads will create multiple variations, making the test results inconclusive.
Modular steel is subjected to loads in three directions if the support is fixed, meaning the structure does not move. When handling such projects, engineers should leverage their skills to calculate deflection limits and optimise frame designs.