College - Author 1

College of Architecture and Environmental Design

Department - Author 1

Architectural Engineering Department

Degree Name - Author 1

BS in Architectural Engineering

College - Author 2

College of Architecture and Environmental Design

Department - Author 2

Architectural Engineering Department

Degree - Author 2

BS in Architectural Engineering



Primary Advisor

John Lawson, College of Architecture and Environmental Design, Architectural Engineering Department


This report follows the pursuit of attaining information and researching academic resources regarding the elusive reciprocal frame structures throughout history, in particular the flat beam grillage. In the following pages, the reader should expect to learn about reciprocal frames in a historical context throughout the globe, as well as, gain insight on how to potentially analyze these frames when they span two-dimensionally. As seen in Figure 1 (Pugnale 2011) and Figure 2 (Godthelp 2019), reciprocal frame structures consist of multiple groups of three or more members that are mutually supported. Along the perimeter of the structure, the members are supported by walls, columns, or the ground; where members meet to a certain extent from the ends of an adjacent member, they are supported by such subsequent members. In structural engineering, it is an intuitive instinct to attempt to follow the load path of a structure until the load is safely distributed into the ground. Only considering gravity, when looking at a planar reciprocal frame layout, it is difficult to visualize exactly how the loading is being transferred within the structure. Furthermore, how does one go about doing statics on a problem that is undergoing a perpetual cycle of load transfer? Hopefully, with the data that has been gathered within this research paper, a path can begin to be paved in regard to the design and analysis of two-dimensional reciprocal frames.