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Earn while you learn

3 new online credit hour courses provide valuable steel building system insights

AIA PDH Online credit hour courses Laptop promoting E-Learning

Knowledge is power, the time-tested adage proclaims. With it, you are positioned to prosper. Without it, no great or significant work can be accomplished. That holds true in the steel construction industry, which continues to evolve as technology advances and building methods are improved. To stay abreast of the ever-changing industry, acquiring up-to-date knowledge is important.

Fortunately, many industry organizations and publications offer free online continuing education and professional development courses that award 1.0 AIA LU/HSW and 1.0 PDH credit. Building Design & Construction, Informed Infrastructure and Architectural Record host many online courses that cover various aspects of steel building construction. If you work with steel buildings systems, it’s possible to obtain valuable insights that enable you to contain total-project costs, streamline erection and improve overall project performance.

Three free education courses new to the market can help you build on your knowledge of steel building systems: Total Steel Project Performance; System-Based Steel Building Solutions; and Long-span Composite Floors: Engineered Options for Multi-Story Project Design.

These courses each provide 1.0 AIA LU/HSW and 1.0 PDH

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Long-span Composite Floors: Engineered Options for Multi-Story Project Design

Multi-story construction in the residential and commercial markets continues its rise in popularity and deployment across the country. With that, the demand for structural steel building systems appropriate for multi-story projects also has risen. Long-span composite floor systems, in particular, stand out as an ideal choice for these projects.

Three fundamental long-span system configurations represent the options on the market today: composite joists, deep-ribbed composite deck and dovetail composite deck. Knowing which system is right for a particular application requires diligent analysis and a comparison of system options. That’s where the professional development course Long-span Composite Floors: Engineered Options for Multi-Story Project Design comes in.

This course includes a detailed look at the three long-span composite floor systems for multi-story construction, how the systems address the engineering challenges of multi-story projects, case studies that show the systems at work in the real world, and the various industry design standards and resources offering guidance on the selection of the correct long-span composite floor system based on project demands.

Composite Joist

Composite joist solution:

Cauley Ferrari in West Bloomfield, Mich., had a unique set of demands. The architectural vision for the dealership featured a second-floor showroom that would need to support more than 292,000 pounds of moveable live loads, span up to 50 feet and be built using no shoring. The span alone necessitated a composite joist floor system. Each joist would support a service live load of 329 pounds per linear foot. Additionally, the open-web joists accommodated utility passthroughs, preserving the 31-inch total floor depth.

Deep Dek®

Deep-ribbed deck solution:

Not to be outdone, the University of Arizona’s new 220,000-square-foot Health Sciences Innovation Building features a three-story, 80-foot interior open-learning space. That posed a big problem: How to build at those heights without shoring. The course explains how a deep-ribbed composite system conquered the challenge while providing visual appeal, large open bays, strength for high loads, vibration control and fire protection.

Vera-Dek Accoustical

Dovetail deck solution:

Similarly, the course features a dovetail composite case study involving a 20-story hotel project. Each floor required open spans of 26 feet with one row of shoring. Acoustical and vibration analysis also factored in to system selection. Three building system solutions were considered, two deep-ribbed compomsite systems and a dovetail composite. A side-by-side analysis illustrates how dovetail composite’s advantages over other systems made it ideal for this project.

Course learning objectives

  • Know the distinguishing attributes of long-span composite floor systems.
  • Be prepared to address system-related engineering criteria, including strength and serviceability requirements, sound transmission and fire endurance.
  • Become familiar with typical application engineering decisions (case study references).
  • Know and have ready the design standards and resources governing composite floors.

Total Steel Project Performance

If there is one tried-and-true step to ensure the success of your project and reduce costs, it’s early steel joist and deck design collaboration—and the earlier, the better. Upfront collaboration with all members of the project team can eliminate problems that can snowball out of control. Among the headaches that early collaboration can remove are incomplete structural drawings that lead to the lengthy and costly request for information (RFI) process. It’s a continuing problem that this course addresses head-on.

Joe Buntyn, Business Development Manager at New Millennium and instructor of the Total Steel Project Performance course, points to recent research that finds a high percentage of project structural drawings are incomplete.

Early project design collaboration also can reduce material tonnage; prevent clashes between mechanical, electrical and plumbing (MEP) systems and steel joists and girders; and optimize project design. These benefits save time and reduce costs while improving the overall performance of the steel building system.

Joe Buntyn pointing to presentation Online credit hour courses

“I’ve been in the steel business a long time,” Buntyn says. “Back in the ’70s when we would get a set of drawings, they’d be 100 percent (complete). You could build from those drawings.”

The Governor’s School for Science & Mathematics gymnasium project in South Carolina exemplifies the importance of early design collaboration, Buntyn says. The original design of the gym’s roof frame specified a heavy, labor-intensive two-piece gable joist. When engineers were brought in, they suggested a three-piece Fink truss joist that weighed less and would require less labor and manufacturing. This simple change reduced costs in all project phases: design, delivery, assembly and erection. Steel tonnage was reduced by more than 50 percent; manufacturing time was cut by 20 percent; and transportation costs decreased 67 percent. Buntyn calls this a “chain reaction of cost reductions.”

“There are good ideas out there, and there are great ways to save money,” he says.

Joe Buntyn presenting ppt of a case study 3-piece Fink Truss Joe Buntyn pointing to presentation Online credit hour courses

Course learning objectives

  • The cost outcomes of incomplete drawings and the need for an efficient RFI process.
  • How and where to improve project cost/performance through early steel joist and deck design collaboration.
  • When to specify and integrate a “composite” roof and floor system to optimize project cost/performance.
  • How BIM can improve project cost and performance.

System-Based Steel Building Solutions Using Joists + Deck

What structural steel building system can meet stringent acoustic and vibration standards for healthcare facilities while providing wide-open floor plans? Which floor system is best at minimizing overall building height for projects in municipalities that have height restrictions? What ceiling system can best withstand the harsh conditions of a natatorium?

To answer those questions requires in-depth understanding of the various steel building systems and their capabilities. The new continuing education course System-Based Steel Building Solutions Using Joists + Deck provides that knowledge.

Sean Smith, a Market Development Manager specializing in architectural deck at New Millennium who teaches the continuing education course, has firsthand experience with the building systems options on the market. For him, the hypothetical question about the ideal steel building systems for natatoriums is reality. It’s one of his areas of expertise. He suggests starting with an acoustical steel roof deck to fight corrosion as well as the noise created by cavernous indoor pools.

Sean Smith showing natatorium ceiling in ppt presentation Joe Buntyn pointing to presentation Online credit hour courses

“When you have a natatorium, you don’t want to have a ceiling system of acoustical tile ceiling panels. They’re going to get wet; they’re going to deteriorate; they’re going to fall into the water,” Smith says. “What you want to do is specify a long-span deck system.”

“There are some things to consider beyond the deck span and using a long-span deck for these applications. First of all, this is an acoustical deck so the insulation in it needs to be sealed. That means its encapsulated and wrapped in PVC plastic that keeps it from getting wet and deteriorating. Also, the paint system is important for this. You want to make sure you start off with a G90 galvanized coating to make the deck a little more resilient.”

“Thinking ahead will save you money in the long run and time.”

That advice applies to more than just natatoriums. The course focuses on a number of applications, including multi-story residential projects, high-rises, convention centers, sports stadiums, recreational facilities, airports and more.

Sean Smith showing Roof Deck Exposed Ceiling System in ppt presentation Joe Buntyn pointing to presentation Online credit hour courses

Course learning objectives

  • The range of steel joist and deck combinations.
  • Building applications for steel joist and deck.
  • Coating and finishing options for exposed joist and deck systems.
  • Sustainable advantages of steel joist and deck systems.

More credit-hour courses

New Millennium has a wealth of education courses and specialists to help you learn the latest about steel building systems and advance your career. Our courses are based on real-world situations and feature case studies examining how structural engineering and design problems were solved using steel joist and steel deck systems. These lessons will help you lower the cost of building design and construction and expedite project timelines. New Millennium education specialists lead our courses, which offer 1.0 AIA LU/HSW and 1.0 PDH credit.

Online Courses

A full list of our courses is available on our website and will connect you with our online campus at Building Design & Construction University, at Informed Infrastructure and at the Continuing Education Center of Architectural Record.

On-site Private Courses

We also can consider delivering our course at your facility in-person. Requests for this service are evaluated on a case-by-case basis. During these in-person sessions, our education specialists present the courses and then answer questions afterward.

Contact one of our education course specialists to discuss hosting an in-person course for your professional group.

Case studies

1863 Club at Saratoga Race Course
  • 1863 Club at Saratoga Race Course
  • Saratoga Springs, N.Y.
  • Architect: SOSH Architects
  • Facility: 36,000 square feet
  • Deep-Dek® Composite 6.0

The 1863 Club is a permanent three-story structure featuring a banquet area on the first floor that accommodates 500 guests; a bar, event space and dining club on the second level; and luxury boxes on the third floor. The elevated live load from hundreds of horse racing fans demanded a versatile long-span composite floor system. Deep-Dek® Composite 6.0 met those demands with its continuous slab design and a sufficient combined depth of 11.125” (Deep-Dek® 6.0 plus 5 "inches" of concrete cover) for required stiffness. It also allows fans unobstructed views thanks to long spans that require minimal supporting columns to mar sightlines.

Northern Arizona University Aquatic and Tennis Complex
  • Northern Arizona University Aquatic and Tennis Complex
  • Flagstaff, Ariz.
  • Architect: Sink Combs Dethlefs
  • Facility: 120,000 square feet
  • Pool: 700,000 gallons
  • Versa-Dek® LS Acoustical and Versa-Wedge® hanging system

This project involved replacing a rusting, deteriorating roof with one that met the owner’s demands for a new warrantied roof that would control sound, match the existing aesthetics and adhere to budgetary constraints. The Versa-Dek® LS Acoustical 1½” profile deck selected was inverted to control acoustics and powder-coated by a reliable third-party provider to prevent corrosion.

Regency Condo Complex
  • The Regency condominium complex
  • Sunset Beach, N.C.
  • Architect: Johnson Garrett Architects, PA
  • Facility: Three 5-story buildings
  • Versa-Dek® XLS and Versa-Dek® S

The Regency condominium complex had several requirements for its interior ceilings and floors systems. Plans called for an open, aesthetically pleasing interior, and it also needed the strength to withstand high winds of up to 130 mph and medium seismic events.

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