STEP – 1 The required file and the instruction sheet is uploaded on the course website http://www.its.caltech.edu/~me35a Download the file and the instruction sheet. The instruction sheet has the information to download and install the software. Once the software is install Using the software open the file me_35a_bridge_design.bdc downloaded from the course website to load the required construction site to build the bridge
GOAL OF THE PROJECT At the above given construction site – build a truss bridge at the lowest possible cost. The necessary instructions on the project can be found in the instruction sheet on the website Working of the software and building a bridge is briefly explained in this file.
Shows total construction cost – Objective is to minimize this
Shows status of bridge – If working – Green, If under construction – yellow, If the bridge fails when load is applied - Red
Apply the load on the bridge to check if it works
Red – Oops..!! OUR BRIDGE FAILED..!! Red colour indicates the members that are failing – Now we need to modify the members
STEP 3: M ODIFYING THE MEMBER PROPERTIES We can change the following properties of the member: Material of the member Diameter of the member Cross-section of the member – Hollow or Solid cross- section
Material Properties of the material used – Shows the maximum tension and compression the member can withstand
Material of the Bar – Default is carbon steel. One can choose a superior material for higher strengths but it would be costly
C/S of the Bar – Solid or Hollow. Hint – Use Hollow c/s for members under compression & Solid for members under tension
Check the load test report and see what you can change for each member
STEP 5: C ONTINUE THE ITERATE ON THE PROPERTIES OF ALL MEMBERS Now continue to check if you can change the properties of each member and the bridge still being stable. Do it on every member and see what is the lowest cost you can get up to
S UBMISSION Once you finish save the file as Last_name(s).bdc and mail to email@example.com@caltech.edu Further instructions for submission are in the instruction sheet that is available on the website
C RITICAL HINTS Load Test Report tells you if the member is in compression or tension. If subjected to: Tension – Use Solid Bars Compression – Use Hollow Bars Try to take advantage of symmetry. Many times taking 2 bars of same properties can be cheaper than using two of much inferior but different properties
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