Date of Award


Degree Name

MS in Architecture




Peter Laursen


This thesis investigates a parametric study of a flat plate floor system designed using post-tensioning. The load balanced by the post-tensioning, the slab depth, and the strength of concrete were varied to create the parametric study of a hotel/condominium grid layout. In order to perform the parametric study, research was conducted on the development of post-tensioning, methods of analysis for two-way slab design, and post-tensioning methods of analysis. Design was conducted by hand through a series of Excel spreadsheets and compared to results found using the computer analysis program, ADAPT-PT. The designs found in the parametric study were then used to perform a cost analysis across ten cities in the United States: Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Denver, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami, Phoenix, San Francisco, and Seattle.

The designs from the hand analysis and the ADAPT-PT model provided similar results for the post-tensioning, and both methods provide an adequate design. The use of ADAPT-PT is recommended because of its ease of use and quick calculation capabilities. The designs of the hand analysis were quantified and along with unit prices gathered from contractors and suppliers the cost analysis found that the design with 100% of the dead load balanced provided the least expensive solution for all the cities, and the design using a 6000 psi strength concrete provide the most expensive solution for all cities. The least expensive slab design was $9.02 per square foot in Atlanta, Georgia, and the most expensive slab design was $24.96 per square foot in Miami, Florida. A more rigorous parametric study in the future may provide a better optimization for the hotel/condominium slab investigated as the parametric study of this thesis found costs which varied by less than 10% between the most expensive and least expensive slabs in the ten cities.

Thesis - Gaelyn Krauser - Calculation Packet.pdf (16547 kB)
Calculation Package Supporting Thesis