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What is a permanent or dead load?

Permanent loads in civil engineering are the loads that a structure is designed to carry permanently, throughout its entire lifespan. These loads include the weight of the structure itself, such as the weight of the building, bridge, or other structure, as well as any fixed equipment, such as HVAC systems or water tanks.



Permanent loads are an important factor in the design of structures, as they can have a significant impact on the overall stability and strength of the structure. Permanent loads are also referred to as dead loads or static loads.


Dead loads are the loads that are constant or nearly constant over time, such as the weight of the structure itself or the weight of fixed equipment. Dead loads are determined based on the weight of the materials used in the construction of the structure and any fixed equipment or finishes, such as flooring or roofing.


The weight of the materials used in the construction of the structure, such as concrete, steel, or timber, is a significant factor in determining the dead loads. The density and thickness of these materials can affect the weight of the structure, and engineers use this information to calculate the permanent loads.


The dead loads of a structure are used in combination with other loads, such as live loads and environmental loads, to determine the overall design loads of the structure. Live loads are the loads that are not constant and can vary over time, such as the weight of people, furniture, or vehicles.


Environmental loads, such as wind, snow, and seismic loads, are also considered in the design of a structure. These loads can affect the overall stability and strength of the structure and must be taken into account when calculating the permanent loads.


Structures are designed to carry the permanent loads with a certain margin of safety, known as the safety factor. The safety factor is typically included in the calculations of the permanent loads to ensure that the structure remains stable and safe for its intended lifespan.


Permanent loads / Dead loads are an important factor in the design of structures in civil engineering. They include the weight of the structure itself and any fixed equipment, such as HVAC systems or water tanks. Permanent loads are also referred to as dead loads or static loads. Dead loads are constant or nearly constant over time and are used in combination with other loads to determine the overall design loads of the structure. The safety factor is included in the calculations of the permanent loads to ensure that the structure remains stable and safe for its intended lifespan.

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