Advances in and Benefits of Rapid Steel Connections

Salam Al-Sabah, Debra F. Laefer, Arturo E. Schultz, Patrick McGetrick

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


Pairing of robotic arms with precision cutting in the form of laser, plasma, and water jet cutting has opened the door to entirely new forms of structural steel connections that can be assembled with no field welding and minimal (if any) bolting. Such connections can offer increased erection speed, decreased safety issues, and in some cases the opportunity for rapid disassembly, thereby creating a pathway for direct reuse. This paper provides an overview on the testing, numerical modeling, and field assembly of one such connection - the Intermeshed Steel Connection (ISC). This paper highlights features and behaviors of this connection when simulated, tested, and erected in a beam-to-beam connection and focuses on compliance, ability to be designed reliably, load transfer between the side plates and the main member, and the relatively rapid speed of erection compared to a traditional fully bolted connection. Because of its limited number of pieces, the connection may enable in-situ robotic assembly.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationIABSE Congress Nanjing 2022 - Bridges and Structures
Subtitle of host publicationConnection, Integration and Harmonisation, Report
PublisherInternational Association for Bridge and Structural Engineering (IABSE)
Number of pages8
ISBN (Electronic)9783857481840
StatePublished - 2022
EventIABSE Congress Nanjing 2022 - Bridges and Structures: Connection, Integration and Harmonisation - Nanjing, China
Duration: Sep 21 2022Sep 23 2022

Publication series

NameIABSE Congress Nanjing 2022 - Bridges and Structures: Connection, Integration and Harmonisation, Report


ConferenceIABSE Congress Nanjing 2022 - Bridges and Structures: Connection, Integration and Harmonisation


  • design for disassembly
  • digital manufacturing
  • quick steel connections
  • robotic assembly
  • steel connections
  • steel erection
  • steel fabrication

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Building and Construction


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