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SCIA Engineer : What's New in 2016

SCIA Engineer-What's new

Enquiries / FREE Trial
SCIA Engineer 16 brings a vast number of enhancements, extensions and modifications that extend throughout the workflow of a typical engineer. Some of them address users specialising in specific types of structures, others simplify the daily work of every structural engineer.


The improvements appear in all phases of the project workflow - initial modelling, precise analysis, code-complying design and presentation of results - and all share the same primary goal:
Key improvements include :
  • Much faster, transparent and comprehensive design of concrete beams, columns and ribs
  • A new "section check" tool for detailed analysis of a concrete section
  • Expanded composite beam design for both AISC and EN1994
  • Seismic concrete frame and shear wall design to US codes
  • Various improvements for meshing and advanced analysis


View the highlights below via the drop-down, or read all the details in the SCIA Resource Centre
You can also request a free SCIA Engineer trial or watch an overview webinar of SCIA Engineer 16 HERE
Click on the title below to select a category

Concrete Design

composite design 1d




























Comprehensive Eurocode design of 1D members
SCIA Engineer 16 offers a full solution for design and code-checking of reinforced concrete beams, columns and ribs according to Eurocode EN1992-1 including the National Annexes. The main benefits are:
  • Support of any cross-section shape, even for the column design
  • All internal forces taken into account: normal force, bending moments, shear forces and torsion
  • Clear and transparent reporting including applied formulas and references to code clauses
  • NEW: economical design thanks to the shift rule for bending moments 
  • New parallel processing gives over 300% speed improvement when using four cores
Other improvements include calculation of the limit height of the concrete compression zone according to Dutch national annex, enhanced visualisation for results, calculation of deflections based on the minimum beam stiffness applicable to all situations, and much more.
Detailed reinforcement concrete section check
The Section Check is an integrated tool for very simple and easy-to-use design and code-checking of a specific section on a 1D member. The user first selects graphically any section in the 3D model.
All data like internal forces, geometry, reinforcement (if present) are automatically transferred to an intuitive dialogue. There, at a glance, the user checks the behaviour and resistance of the section, and he may dig deeper into the calculation report and make changes to the reinforcement, if required – all on the same screen, just 1 click away.
Finally, results can be sent to the Engineering Report for final documentation.
Design of concrete shear walls & frame systems (ACI 318-14)
The design of linear and surface concrete elements according to the Brazilian NBR 6118 has been significantly enhanced and it now covers:
  • Design of 2D members for the ultimate limit state, including shear reinforcement
  • Design of 1D members,including ribs, for ultimate as well as serviceability limit states
  • Check of crack width and determination of long term deflections
  • Approximated method for second order effects
  • Physically and geometrically non linear analysis
Push-over analysis using ECTools for US codes
The integration of ECtools into SCIA Engineer (for seismic capacity design) has been much improved and all functions are now located in the standard concrete menu.
Moreover, a push-over analysis with an advanced fibre-model can be performed to obtain the push-over curve. The calculation report generated in ECtools is displayed in SCIA Engineer and, optionally, included in Engineering Report.

Steel and composite design

EC3 connections: four bolts per row, weak axis bending and more
The steel connections design according to Eurocodes has been extended by the results of the latest research, and now allows the engineers to design connections with four bolts per row, and check connections for weak-axis or even bi-axial bending moments, in full compliance with the philosophy of the component method.
  • New summary output is now available in addition to the existing brief and detailed option
  • New output for splice connections includes more details
  • Moment-stiff-end-plate connection with four bolts per row are now theoretically better understood and can be modelled and checked in SCIA Engineer in full agreement with EN 1993-1-8
  • Strong axis connections can be subject to strong and weak axis bending simultaneously
Realistic composite design according to EN 1994
After its introduction in SCIA Engineer 15, the composite beam design tools have seen their user interface streamlined and extended with additional capabilities. Starting with the selection of a suitable steel decking and shear connectors from the integrated catalogues of common manufacturers, continuing with exact modelling and precise determination of stiffness, the engineers can design and check cantilevers and simple as well as continuous beams.
Clear layout and customizable level of detail in the report then underline the overall usability of the solution.
To name a few, the following features have been added in the latest version of SCIA Engineer:
  • Lateral-torsional buckling checks and comprehensive fire safety verification for both the construction and final stage
  • Catalogue of British, European and North Americal manufacturers with optional manual input of user-defined sheeting
  • The stiffness of the composite slab as well as the (partial) shear connection is taken into account
  • New one-way decks eliminate parisitic bending moments at the ends of single beams and transfer all loads first to the secondary beams, which in turn transfer it to the primary beams as concentrated forces
  • Simplified approach for limitation of crack widths 
Optimised composite design for AISC 360-10
A robust solution for modelling, analysis and design of composite beam floor systems according to the U.S. codes in SCIA Engineer includes a brand new automatic optimisation of composite beam floors.
Highlights include:
  • Ability to modify load transfer method (one-way or two-way) for composite decking
  • Integration of metal deck catalogues from well-known US based manufacturers including Vulcraft, Verco & Canam
  • Implementation of optimization routine that accounts for strength, service and detailing conditions in both construction and final composite stages
  • Multiple optimization strategies (balanced, least weight, least studs)
  • Ability to restrict beam depth & rows of studs
  • Automatic design of camber based on construction stage loading
  • Labels include cross section, studs (uniform/segmented layout) and required camber
  • Layout and transparency improvements for calculations including all rendered formulas, dynamic graphics and moment diagrams
AutoDesign for custom catalogue-based optimisation
The Coupled Set AutoDesign is a new optimisation routine that works best for, e.g., a user-defined set of steel profiles with several different dimensions (height, width, thickness, etc.) varying in a range of discreet values and with some dimensions depending on others (i.e., sections of larger height are only produced with a limited range of thickness). This optimisation is also suitable if the values of optimised dimensions are read from a product range catalogue: the values do not vary continuously, but only specific produced dimensions are available.

Analysis and results

New advanced analysis options
A series of new options have been added to the analysis element of the software:
  • Four types of yield conditions are now available for general plastic analysis of shells: Von Mises, Tresca, Mohr-Coulomb, and Drucker-Prager
  • New parameters in the Solver setup allow for better control of the convergence of non-linear analysis, make it possible to neglect masses in a specific direction or choose the method for time history analysis
  • Improved stability of the Soil-in calculation for very deep foundations
  • Membranes are now analysed using triangular elements for a more robust convergence
  • Equivalent Lateral Forces (ELF), newly implemented in SCIA Engineer, is a well-known method for the seismic analysis of structures; even though being quite conservative, it is very popular for its simplicity
  • Automatic mesh refinement now works with a user-defined group of load cases
Graphical representation of strains and stresses
The advanced graphical visualisation of 3D stresses and strains was extended:
  • 2D strain values can now be visualized: basic total strain, principal total strain, basic plastic strain, and principal plastic strain
  • Correct handling of 3D stresses display when the load is applied in the centroid instead of shear centre
Table results - more interactive than before
  • New graphical mark to highlight in the 3D model the position of a specific value from Table Results
  • Faster opening of Table Results and refreshing of the values after change
  • A double-click on a particular value in Table Results opens a detailed code-check, if applicable
  • Option to remove table results from saved projects to reduce file size
  • Validity status and one-click-regeneration ensure that the values are constantly up-to-date

Reporting and BIM

Engineering report smoothly handles large reports
The Engineering Report, the primary tool for the preparation of comprehensive and clear documents about the performed analysis and design, presents a few new features and, primarily, optimised memory handling. Thanks to this improvement, the engineers are now able to, for example:
  • Import A0 drawing in 600 DPI quality
  • Include hundreds of high resolution pictures in the same report
  • Import EC tools calculation reports
  • Import external PDF files

Additionally, it is now possible to send the content of the Engineering Report to MS Excel without formatting.

BIM Updates
The links to 3rd party software have been updated to support the latest versions:
  • A new, IFC-based, interface replaces the old link with Allplan. This IFC interface has been optimised for the exchange of data with Allplan and thus no additional manual settings are required.
  • SCIA Engineer 16 is compatible with Tekla Structures 2016.

User support and feedback

Instant access to online help
SCIA Engineer application window now features a search bar that starts immediate search in the online help. There is no need any more to swap to the Internet browser to find answers to emerging questions.
Your feedback is valuable
A new option (button) at the top right corner of the SCIA Engineer application window provides a direct communication channel to SCIA’s product management. Those who want to share their opinions with SCIA have a choice of three buttons: like, dislike, send a suggestion.


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