What is RFEM?

Modern engineers need tools that enhance productivity - these tools must be intuitive, easy to use and must provide a path that quickly leads to a result.
RFEM was designed with this in mind, and provides a suite of tools that are easy to learn and will have you up and running with results in little to no time at all.

Overview

RFEM takes a modular approach to software. The core package is RFEM itself, which provides a pre-processor to construct your models, with integrated analysis tools. With RFEM, you are able to quickly build models using CAD tools, and then view the results in the same interface. All design activities are regarded as a post-processing function, and the designer can choose from many design codes from around the world.


The structural analysis program RFEM is the basis of a modular software system. The main program RFEM is used to define structures, materials, and loads for planar and spatial structural systems consisting of plates, walls, shells and members. The program also allows you to create combined structures as well as model solid and contact elements.

RFEM provides deformations, internal forces, stresses, support forces, and soil contact stresses. The corresponding add-on modules facilitate data input by automatic generation of structures and connections or can be used to perform further analyses and designs according to various standards.

The modular software concept allows you to compile a program package tailored to your individual needs. It is possible to upgrade the program at any time.

Concrete design modules
RF-CONCRETE which consists of RF-CONCRETE Surfaces for the design of plates, walls, planar structures, and shells for the ultimate and the serviceability limit state. RF-CONCRETE Members designs member elements of reinforced concrete structures.

RF-CONCRETE Columns is a powerful tool for reinforced concrete design, and performs the ultimate limit state designs of rectangular and circular compression elements according to the model column method (method based on nominal curvature).

RF-CONCRETE NL as an extension of RF CONCRETE Surfaces allows for realistic analysis of deformations, stresses and crack widths of members, plates, walls, planar structures and shells made of reinforced concrete by considering the nonlinear behavior of composite material when determining internal forces and deformations. RF CONCRETE NL as an extension of RF CONCRETE Members allows for nonlinear analysis of 2D and 3D beam structures in the ultimate and serviceability limit states. For example, it is possible to perform a nonlinear calculation of compression elements prone to instability risks, or to calculate deformations of frame constructions consisting of reinforced concrete beams close to reality.

RF-CONCRETE Deflect integrated in RF CONCRETE Surfaces allows for a deflection analysis of plate structures conforming to standard specifications when performing the analytical serviceability limit state design.

RF-PUNCH Pro performs the design of punching shear resistance for singularly or linearly supported surfaces. The module automatically determines the governing punching load from the specified load. It is also possible to apply a concentrated punching load to a slab manually.

RF-FOUNDATION Pro designs single, bucket and block foundations for all support forces arising in the RFEM model.

RF-TENDON determines the tendon layout within concrete members and the equivalent prestressing forces. The module represents a basis for design of prestressed concrete with pre tensioned and post tensioned concrete according to EN 1992-1-1 and EN 1992-2 in the RF-TENDON Design add-on module.

RF-TENDON Design performs the design of prestressed concrete members with pre tensioned and post tensioned concrete based on the results calculated in RF-TENDON and RFEM.

Design codes for the following countries are supported:
EC2

DIN 1045

SIA 262

ACI 318

CSA A23.3

GB 50010

Steel design modules
RF-STEEL performs general stress analysis by calculating the existing stresses and comparing the results with limit stresses. In the process of stress analysis, the add-on module determines the maximum stresses of surfaces, members, and sets of members. Also the governing internal forces of each member are documented. In addition, there is the option of an automatic optimization of cross-sections or thicknesses including the export of modified cross-sections or surface thicknesses to the main program RFEM

RF-STEEL EC3 performs all characteristic designs of the ultimate limit state as well as stability and deformation analyses for steel members according to EN 1993-1-1:2005 + AC:2009, EN 1993-1-2:2006 + AC:2005 (fire resistance), EN 1993-1-4:2006 (stainless steel) and EN 1993-1-5:2006.

RF-STEEL Warping Torsion is an extension of the RF-STEEL EC3 module. It performs lateral-torsional (flexural-torsional) buckling analysis of members according to second-order theory with 7 degrees of freedom and application of imperfections with regard to mode shapes. RF-STEEL Warping Torsion allows you to perform relevant designs according to EN 1993-1-1:2005 + AC:2009

RF-STEEL Plasticity is an extension of the RF-STEEL EC3 module. RF-STEEL Plasticity performs Plastic Design of Cross-Sections, the following design methods are available: (1) Cross-sections consisting of two or three sheets (I-, C-, Z-, L‑sections, channels, tees), flat steel, pipes, and hollow sections according to the Partial Internal Forces Method (PIF method) with redistribution by Kindmann / Frickel. (2) Elliptical cross-sections with analytical nonlinear optimization procedure. Methods for general cross-sections include Partial Internal Forces Method without redistribution by Kindmann / Frickel and the Simplex Method.

RF-STEEL AISC is applicable for the ultimate and the serviceability limit state designs of members according to the American standards ANSI/AISC 360-05, ANSI/AISC 360-10, and ANSI/AISC 360-16.

RF-STEEL SIA performs all required designs of the ultimate and the serviceability limit state for steel members according to the Swiss standard SIA 263.

RF-STEEL IS designs steel members for the ultimate and the serviceability limit state according to the Indian standard IS 800:2007.

RF-STEEL BS is applicable for the ultimate and the serviceability limit state design of steel members according to the standards BS 5950-1:2000 (British standard) and BS EN 1993-1-1 (Eurocode 3: British National Annex).

RF-STEEL GB is the perfect tool for all required designs of the ultimate and the serviceability limit state for steel members according to the Chinese standard GB 50017‑2003

RF-STEEL CSA performs the ultimate and the serviceability limit state of steel members according to the Canadian standards CSA S16-09 and CSA S16-14.

RF-STEEL AS performs design of steel members for the ultimate and the serviceability limit state design according to the Australian standard AS 4100-1998 + Annex 1 - 1999.

RF-STEEL NTC-DF is used for the ultimate and the serviceability limit state design of steel members according to the Mexican standard NTC-RCDF (2004).

RF-STEEL SP applies the Russian standard SP 16.13330.2011 to all required designs of the ultimate and the serviceability limit state for steel members.

RF-STEEL SANS can carry out the ultimate and the serviceability limit state design of steel members according to the South African standard SANS 10162-1:2011.

RF-STEEL NBR designs steel members for the ultimate and the serviceability limit state according to the Brazilian standard ABNT NBR 8800:2008.

RF-STEEL HK performs the ultimate and the serviceability limit state design of steel members according to the Code of Practice for the Structural Use of Steel 2011 (Buildings Department - Hong Kong)

RF-STEEL Fatigue Members allows for fatigue designs of members and sets of members according to EN 1993-1-9.

RF-ALUMINUM designs aluminium members for the ultimate and the serviceability limit state according to EN 1991-1-1:2007 (Eurocode 9).

RF-ALUMINUM ADM is applicable for the ultimate and the serviceability limit state designs of members according to the American standards ADM 2010 and ADM 2015.

Design codes for the following countries are supported:




Tower design modules
RF-TOWER Structure provides an innovative tool which facilitates the generation of geometrically complex 3D tower structures. It is possible to create lattice towers and radio masts using parameters. In addition, the module can adjust the models created in RFEM.

RF-TOWER Equipment can create tower equipment such as transmitting antennas, platforms, ladders, and cable lines. The add-on module includes extensive libraries of inside and outside platforms, tubular extensions, antenna brackets, and antennas.

RF-TOWER Loading creates design-relevant actions for lattice towers such as parameterized wind loads, ice loads, and variable loads. The generation also considers the objects created in RF-TOWER Structure and RF-TOWER Equipment.

RF-TOWER Effective Lengths determines the effective lengths of members used in lattice towers with square, rectangular or triangular floor plans. After the effective lengths are determined, they can be exported to the RF-TOWER Design add-on module for further designs.

RF-TOWER Design designs lattice towers according to the standards EN 1993-1-1, EN 1993-3-1 and EN 50341. The relevant input data of the add-on modules RF-TOWER Structure, RF-TOWER Equipment, RF-TOWER Loading and RF-TOWER Effective Lengths are considered in the design.

RF-JOINTS Steel designs pinned joints with bolt connections for members used in lattice towers in accordance with the standard EN 1993-1-8

Design codes for the following countries are supported:




Connection design modules
RF-FRAME-JOINT Pro creates and classifies rigid bolt connections between columns and horizontal beams according to Eurocode 3. Optionally, it is possible to apply stiffeners, supplementary web plates, and backing plates. In addition, the module checks the geometrical feasibility of connections with respect to the size of the wrench used for tightening screws.

RF-JOINTS Steel - DSTV designs moment resisting and pinned I-beam connections of members in compliance with the German guideline "Standardised Joints in Steel Structures". The resistances are determined according to the standard DIN EN 1993-1-8: Complete edition 2013

RF-JOINTS Steel - Pinned configures and designs shear connections of I-beams according to Eurocode 3. There are four different types available: Web cleat connection, fin plate connection, short end plate connection and end plate connection with cleat.

RF-JOINTS Steel - Rigidallows the configuration and design of moment resisting joints of rolled and welded I-beams according to EC 3. The following types are available: end plate connection (beam to column or beam to beam) and rigid splice plate connection.

RF-JOINTS Steel - Column Base designs footings of hinged and restrained column bases according to EN 1993-1-8 (including National Annexes)

RF-HSS analyses various hollow section connections or designs an existing connection according to Eurocode 3. It is possible to design planar and spatial truss nodes containing round, square or rectangular hollow sections.

Design codes for the following countries are supported:




Dynamics design modules
RF-DYNAM Pro - Natural Vibrationsmodule takes care of the analysis of natural frequencies and mode shapes of member, surface, and solid models. All required input values can be imported directly from RFEM.

RF-DYNAM Pro - Forced Vibrations performs dynamic analyses of structures to external excitations. Various excitation functions can be defined in a tabular form, as harmonic loads or as a function of time. The time history analysis is performed either with modal analysis or with the linear implicit Newmark analysis.

RF-DYNAM Pro - Equivalent Loads performs seismic analysis using multi-modal response spectrum analysis. The required spectra can be created according to the standards or user-defined. Subsequently, the equivalent static loads are generated.

RF-DYNAM Pro - Nonlinear Time History is an extension of the add-on modules RF-DYNAM Pro - Natural Vibrations and RF-DYNAM Pro - Forced Vibrations (linear time history analysis).

Design spectra based on codes for the following countries are supported:




Piping design modules
With RF-PIPING modules it is now possible to consider the design of the structure and the piping in combination, allowing the designer to consider the piping loads in the structural design without the need to import piping loads from an external application.

RF-PIPING is used for modelling piping systems and defining loads conforming to standards. It is possible to define specific piping components such as valves, fittings, flanges, tees, expansion joints, and others, and consider them together with the supporting structure.

RF-PIPING Design compares the existing pipe stresses with the allowable stresses according to EN 13480-3, ASME B31.1 and ASME B31.3.

Design codes for the following countries are supported:




Tensile membrane design modules
RF-FORM-FINDING searches for shapes of structures subjected to tension or compression, such as membrane and cable structures, shells, and other structures. The shape is calculated by the equilibrium between the surface stress (prestress) and natural or geometric boundary conditions.

RF-CUTTING-PATTERN calculates and organizes the cutting pattern for membrane structures. The planarization process is carried out in compliance with the minimum energy theory.

RF-MAT NL allows for consideration of nonlinear material behaviour in RFEM. It offers the option to couple surfaces with the stiffness types "Membrane" and "Membrane-Orthotropic" with the material models "Isotropic nonlinear elastic 2D/3D" and "Isotropic plastic 2D/3D". This functionality enables the simulation of the nonlinear strain behavior of (for example) ETFE foils.