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Introduction to space frame system

A growing interest in space frame structures has been witnessed worldwide over the last half-century.

The search for new structural forms to accommodate large unobstructed areas has always been the main objective of architects and engineers. With the advent of new building techniques and construction materials, space frames frequently provide the right answer and satisfy the requirements for lightness, economy, and speedy construction. Significant progress has been made in the process of development of space frame. A large amount of theoretical and experimental research programs were carried out by many universities and research institutions in various countries. As a result, a great deal of useful information has been disseminated, and fruitful results have been put into practice.

In the past few decades, the proliferation of space frame was mainly due to its great structural potential and visual beauty. New and imaginative applications of space frames are being demonstrated in the total range of building types, such as sports arenas, exhibition pavilions, assembly halls, transportation terminals, airplane hangars, workshops, and warehouses. They have been used not only on long-span roofs, but also on mid- and short-span enclosures as roofs, floors, exterior walls, and canopies. Many interesting projects have been designed and constructed all over the world using a variety of configurations.

Last, the space frame has also the problem of connecting a large number of members (sometimes up to 20) in space through different angles at a single point. The emergence of several connecting methods of proprietary systems has made great improvement in the construction of space frame, which offers simple and efficient means for making connection of members. To acheive the exact manufacture and installation details, Paydar Alborz Co. has developed the  SSD (Space Structures Designer) software.

Advantages of Space Frames

1. Ability in construction of wide span structures and large length cantilever roofs considering less weigth than other structural systems.

2. Ability of design and construction of any architectural shapes without any limits in shapes.

3. Manufacturing of the space frame elements and nodes in factory under accurate supervision.

4. Easy to transport; space frame system is made of pipe elements and spheres which do not need any spectial machinery to transport. One truck could carry about 1000 sqm of space frame system.

5. Easy to install; the space frame system is a modular roof which could be assembled in parts and joined together to build a roof. So, there will be no need to assign big cranes and sometimes in lack of chance in using cranes due to location of the roof, the assemblage could be done on top of the columns.

6. Space frame systems are lightweight structures, So, the system is earthquake resistant.

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