What is STAAD.Pro Physical Modeler?
STAAD.Pro Physical Modeler is a user interface for modeling structures using physical concepts.
Physical Versus Analytical Modeling
In previous generations of STAAD –as well as many other structural analysis software products– modeling of a structure began with the most granular of elements: nodes. Then nodes were connected with linear members or plate elements. Properties were assigned to these model elements. This bottom-up method of forming a mathematical model is nearly the opposite of what goes on the actual erection of a structure.
STAAD.Pro Physical Modeler takes advantage of physical modeling to simplify of modeling a structure, which in turn more accurately reflects the process of building a model. Beams and surfaces are placed in the model on the scale of which they would appear in the physical world. A column may span multiple floors and a surface represents an entire floor of a building, for example. A joint is then generated anywhere two physical objects meet in the model (as well as at the free ends of cantilevered members, for convenience).
When the time comes for the analysis of the structure, an analytical model is generated from the physical model in a process referred to as decomposition. Surface entities are meshed into plate elements and beams will be automatically subdivided for analysis as necessary by intersecting members. This all happens with minimal effort required from you, the engineer. This frees up more time for the actual process of engineering.
STAAD.Pro Input File
When you use the STAAD.Pro Physical Modeler interface to model your structure, the resulting STAAD input file will contain some comment sections before and after the resulting input commands. These instruct the program and users to not modify that portion of the command so that synchronization between the physical and analytical model files can be maintained.
The STAAD.Pro Editor will display this portion of the input file with a gray background and will prevent any changes from being made to the included commands.