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Concrete cover: On stand 196 software house Integer will be showing its new SuperCONCRETE module SC-RIB for the analysis, design and detailing of ribbed slabs. Developed in response to requests from SuperCONCRETE users, SC-RIB offers design to BS8110, with an automatic detailing link to SuperCAD-RC available.

Integer says SC-RIB will analyse ribbed slabs with variable rib dimensions, tapering or parallel, at user defined pitch. It also includes automatic calculation of patterns for dead, live and wind loads. At design stage all relevant clauses of BS8110 are automatically checked and a similarly automatic detailed reinforcement drawing and bending schedule is obtainable within SuperCAD-RC.

Also on show will be the new modules and enhancements for SuperSTRESS 4.3.

SS-SURF is an influence line and surface generation module, while SS- DEUTSCH has been developed for engineers working in Germany. SuperLINK is the suite of integration modules which allow links between SuperSTRESS and SuperCONCRETE. Three modules are available initially: SL-BEAM, SL- RCOL and SL-BASE.

Launch party: WinDap W7, the new version of the drainage area planning suite from Micro Drainage will make its first public appearance on stand 251. Micro Drainage says the suite has been completely re-engineered to deliver greatly enhanced productivity, and that independent trials by the consultancy arm of North West Water has shown that the CASDeF analysis module from WinDap W7 can produce accurate results at up to 50 times the speed of standard computer modelling techniques.

Substantial improvements in the interface are also claimed, with new graphics and intuitive processes which are said to

make it quick and easy to use. Similar enhancements also feature on the latest W6 edition of the design suite WinDes, which is also to be launched at Civils 98.

Overseas users now have a full range of utilities to enable them to work with international rainfall data and alternative flow equations. These include a 'unique' rainfall generator, Micro Drainage says. Improved links to a wide range of road and surveying software also feature in the W6 version.

Micro Drainage is said to be the only drainage design software provider to be independently certified for compliance with BS EN ISO 9000 and TickIt quality standards.

Building block: Research Engineers (Europe), the European subsidiary of US-based Research Engineers Inc, will be featuring its latest STAAD/Pro software for structural analysis, design and detailing on stand 160. STAAD/Pro builds on the established STAAD-111 package, which the company claims is the most widely used structural analysis and design software in the world.

A new suite of component design modules is said to give engineers the ability to design a full range of utility structures, including foundations, retaining walls, masonry and connections.

STAAD/Pro can also include software for full non-linear, thermal and buckling analysis, as well as for finite element modelling and verification. Research Engineers (Europe) says the package makes full use of the data sharing and work-flow management facilities in Microsoft's Windows 95 and NT environments, as well as the latest Internet and World Wide Web technologies. This makes it ideal for integrating the work of geographically dispersed design teams, the company says.

Visitors to the stand will see demonstrations of how STAAD/ Pro can be integrated with the company's specialist piping analysis software ADLPIPE to provide visual clash detection facilities early in the design phase.

Early sighting: Elstree Computing will be giving Civils 98 visitors a sneak preview of its new civil engineering design suite PDS V6 which is due to be launched in June. Stand 134 will also feature its predecessor PDS V5 released in February.

PDS V5 was a major redevelopment of the PDS suite and is a true 32bit application only available for the Windows 95 and Windows NT operating environments. It is double precision to allow unlimited database size, has 16,000 point digital models and support for National Grid co-ordinates, says ECL.

This version is also faster, and includes many new features and improvements from the user group wish list. With V6, ECL will be building on the improved functionality of V5 by introducing a new user interface incorporating true 32bit Windows dialogue boxes.

Lightening the load: FEA will be launching Windows NT versions of two of its analysis software programmes on stand 150 at the show. LUSAS Civil & Structural and LUSAS Bridge will both be available in these new versions, which will feature an all new graphical user interface.

They are fully compliant with Windows NT and 95, and the user interface includes all the familiar and useful features of Windows, making it easy for engineers to use the programs, FEA claims.

LUSAS Bridge is suitable for bridge analysis including seismic and dynamic loading, large deflections and fatigue. It can be used on all types of bridge design from simple grillages to complex cable stayed and suspension structures.

Design of the UK's largest 55m diameter clinker store was recently carried out using LUSAS Civil & Structural to predict the induced loadings and subsequent deflections on the circular 35m high wall and foundations.

The wall is relatively thin at just 500mm. Being post tensioned, it required a full 3D geometric nonlinear analysis to prove the design.

The store also had to be analysed for uneven loading situations because conveyors do not discharge the clinker evenly into the structure. Wind loading on the empty store before and after post tensioning, and a full store with long term tendon loads, were some of the other cases that had to be considered.

Contour plots were produced showing forces, bending moments and out of plane shears in the wall and foundations. Deflection plots showed deformation under each of the applied loads, and plots of Clark-Neilson forces were used to aid reinforcement design.

Steel strength: New versions of existing products will be on show on stand 200 as MultiSuite Software demonstrates its latest developments. There will be special emphasis on MultiSuite 5.0 for AutoCAD, Release 14. This has a new step by step Windows installation program which enables the software to be installed and running within 15 minutes, the company claims.

MultiSteel is a 2D and 3D steel drafting and detailing environment that enhances AutoCAD specifically for structural engineers, designers, draughtsmen and fabricators. The program is divided into modules representing the main categories of structural detailing and users can operate as much or as little as they wish depending on their detailing requirements. A material schedule is created simultaneously and item numbers are automatically allocated to each component on both the schedule and the drawing.

A new version of MultiRC will also be on show. According to MultiRC development manager Bruce McCullagh, the latest Windows style user interface has greatly improved the productivity of the software. It is now supplied as a full 32bit ARX application which is said to be much faster than previous versions of the software.

Over 30 new commands have been added over the past two years. Bar summaries are now shown within dialogue boxes to which filters can be applied, enabling the detailer to fully interact with the drawing and the schedules. Full schedule auditing checks now allow the whole drawing to be checked and errors to be viewed.

Batch printing of schedules has also been added and extensive bar labelling features are now included to automate alternate and staggered bars.

Competitive edge: As if the launch of a new product at Civils 98 wasn't enough to lure visitors to stand 365, ground modelling software company PLS International will be holding a free prize draw for more than £10,000 worth of its products.

The company, which recently acquired Milton Keynes based Ground Modelling Systems, has chosen to unveil the latest version of its flagship package PanTerra for Windows on day one of the show.

Like its DOS predecessor, PanTerra for Windows is ideally suited to the needs of civil engineers, highway designers and land surveyors and now comes with enhanced performance in the easy-to-use Windows NT or 95 format.

The prize draw will be overseen by a representative from NCE and will take place on the final day of the show. To participate visitors should already be running the necessary operating packages and employ at least one engineer or surveyor.

Quick off the draw: Fed up with co-ordinating and re-working reams of drawings drafted by the client, engineer and architect? Then check out Bentley Systems latest release of MicroStation Triforma on stand 946.

The software was originally introduced in 1996 and allows users to design with 3D solid modelling. As the design progresses information is stored in a single building model which can be used to generate detailed specifications, construction drawings and exact bills of quantity.

This third version of the package will be available in June and has been upgraded to incorporate a powerful solid modeller known as Parasolid. This gives engineers and architects free reign to let their imaginations run riot and to design and incorporate any three dimensional shape within the single building model.

To aid integration between the different parties to the contract, commands can also be organised in project phases. And because not all projects start out high-tech, a new feature allows two dimensional data to be incorporated into the model.

Great leap forward: Structural analysis packages have come a long way since the early days of punch card input and steam powered processors - and for the last 25 years SIA has been one of the firms driving forward this progress with its LEAP suite of design tools.

One of SIA's biggest advances recently was to convert its very popular software to run on Windows 95. No longer the daunting 'black-screen' operating system input and output but a user-friendly and familiar screen interfacing directly with MOSS, AutoCAD and just about any other spreadsheet of database.

SIA's latest step forward in easing the lives of overworked structural engineers - LEAP5 for Windows version 6 - is launched at Civils 98 on SIA's pitch in the Infrastructure pavilion, stand 404. Yet more graphical input and output tools have been added to the existing version 5.2, which should give engineers more time to design the bridge of their dreams.

Don't do it yourself: Frustration with spreadsheets that don't add up, or chasing down invoice trails that lead to a dead end, are pleasures of the past, claims Syntech, now offering its new project forecasting and monitoring module ProForM. This integrated suite of time recording, project costing, charging and accounting solutions does it all for you by offering at a glance summary budgets against actual or breakdowns by cost types.

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