Unit weights for structural analysis


When dealing with structural analysis the first step is to evaluate loadings. We can have:

  1. dead loads;
  2. live loads;
  3. environmental loads.

The dead load is the weight of the structure you are calculating.

Dead loads can be calculated from the unit weights given in BS 648 named “Schedule of weights of building materials“. Here you can find a selection of some materials:

Asphalt

  • Roofing 2 layers, 19 mm thick => 42 kg/m²
  • Damp-proofing, 19 mm thick => 41 kg/m²
  • Road and footpaths, 19 mm thick => 44 kg/m²

Bitumen roofing felts

  • Mineral surfaced bitumen per layer => 3.5 kg/m²

Blockwork

  • Solid per 25 mm thick, stone aggregate => 55 kg/m²
  • Aerated per 25 mm thick => 15 kg/m²

Board

  • Blockboard per 25 mm thick => 12.5 kg/m²

Brickwork

  • Clay, solid per 25 mm thick medium density => 55 kg/m²
  • Concrete, solid per 25 mm thick => 59 kg/m²

Cast stone

  • 2250 kg/m³

Concrete

  • Natural aggregates => 2400 kg/m³
  • Lightweight aggregates (structural) => 1760 kg/m³ (+240 or -160)

Flagstones

  • Concrete, 50 mm thick => 120 kg/m³

Glass fibre

  • Slab, per 25 mm thick => 2.0-5.0 kg/m³

Gypsum panels and partitions

  • Building panels 75 mm thick => 44 kg/m³

Lead

  • Sheet, 2.5 mm thick => 30 kg/m²

Linoleum

  • 3 mm thick => 6 kg/m²

Plaster

  • Two coats gypsum, 13 mm thick => 22 kg/m²

Plastics sheeting

  • Corrugated => 4.5 kg/m²

Plywood

  • per mm thick => 0.7 kg/m²

Reinforced concrete

  • 2400 kg/m³ (in Italy: concrete = 2400 kg/m³, reinforced concrete = 2500 kg/m³)

Rendering

  • Cement:sand (1:3) 13 mm thick => 30 kg/m²

Screeding

  • Cement:sand (1:3) 13 mm thick => 30 kg/m²

Slate tiles

  • (depending upon thickness and source) => 24-78 kg/m²

Steel

  • Solid (mild) => 7850 kg/m³
  • Corrugated roofing sheets per mm thick => 10 kg/m²

Tarmacadam

  • 25 mm thick => 60 kg/m²

Terrazzo

  • 25 mm thick => 54 kg/m²

Tiling, roof

  • Clay => 70 kg/m²

Timber

  • Softwood => 590 kg/m³
  • Hardwood => 1250 kg/m³

Water

  • 1000 kg/m³

Woodwool

  • Slabs, 25 mm thick => 15 kg/m²

For any kind of questions on this article you can contact the author at:

ofs@hotmail.it

Eng. Onorio Francesco Salvatore

One Response to Unit weights for structural analysis

  1. Bogotà scrive:

    Bel lavoro Francesco, anzi… good work!

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