Modularization and Standardization of Pipe Rack Infrastructure
The growing trend of delivering structural design services for industrial structures to foreign countries has often led to designs that reflect the local experience of designers who are part of a construction culture that includes very low-cost labour. The result is that Canadian construction companies such as the research partner company, Waiward Steel LP, are faced with fabricating structures that are neither efficient nor provide good value for owners. Nowhere is this problem more evident than in heavy pipe-supporting structures that are often designed for labour-intensive construction methods. The research to be conducted includes: (1) a thorough evaluation of current designs, (2) development of a series of efficient standardized modular designs for pipe-supporting structures to be easily adaptable to a variety of loading cases and potential foundation conditions, (3) optimization of the designs using comprehensive numerical simulations, and (4) physical verification of the modularized designs using full-scale laboratory testing.