Engineering calculation templates are vital for engineers working in any field, from mechanical to electrical and civil engineering. They provide a common platform for engineers to perform their calculations, reducing the risk of errors and inconsistencies. With modern projects becoming larger in scale and more complex, the use of engineering allows for engineers to work at greater efficiencies and ensure a high-quality design output.
Modes of engineering calculation
For a long time, engineers had to perform hand calculations to solve problems without the aid of technology. Even for smaller projects and tasks, this can be a long, arduous process. Calculating by hand is time-consuming and prone to human error. Luckily, technology has advanced to a point where computers can do much manual work for us.
Nowadays, engineers often turn towards spreadsheets and CAD tools to aid with design. These computer applications allow engineers to visualise and calculate complex pieces of work at much greater efficiency. Computer software have also greatly assisted in performing the finite element method in civil engineering, with large structures being broken down in smaller computable parts. With the increased uptake of these tools, it is important for engineers to be upskilled in their familiarity with digital software. As such, competency levels can cause a barrier for engineers to utilise these tools fully.
That’s where engineering calculation templates come in. They’re pre-programmed math equation solvers in templates that provide a standardised approach to solving problems, reducing the risk of human error. The immediate answer that comes into many people’s minds would be spreadsheets. Templates with all relevant formulas and charts coded into the spreadsheets allow engineers to input values and receive the immediate values they seek. Some templates can also integrate with CAD and BIM tools, making it easy for engineers to visualise their calculations' effects and simulate the designs' performance under different conditions. Engineering calculation templates can take what hand calculation and finite analysis can do and automate it. We’ll dive into that a bit deeper in the upcoming section.
How engineering calculation templates help to calculate better
Building and running engineering calculations from scratch is extremely complicated. Engineers would have to follow pages upon pages of regulatory and compliance codes to determine the correct approach, boundary conditions and formulas for designing a system. Imagine each engineer doing the same thing for multiple projects of similar nature. That's a hell of a lot of added time, effort and risk.
One of the primary benefits of using engineering calculation templates is the increase in standardisation that they provide. A single verified template for an engineering design such as a concrete beam would provide engineers with an accurate tool to calculate the properties of a specific concrete beam. Using multiple engineers would eliminate the room for error in multiple projects or elements if each engineer were to design the element by themselves. Work standardisation also allows engineers to collaborate and cross-check their work against each other, as their works are all built upon the same benchmark.
Another benefit of engineering calculation templates is their integration with 3D drawing tools. Many templates are designed to be used in conjunction with 3D modelling software, making it possible to perform complex calculations without leaving the design environment. With other tools such as Building Information Modelling (BIM) and Digital Twins ready to be integrated with calculation templates, Engineers can receive immediate feedback on their work as they can visualise the performance of their designs, as mentioned in the previous section. This can result in a more streamlined workflow, reducing the time it takes to complete calculations and making it easier for engineers to work together on a project.
As no needs for each engineer are the same, engineering calculation templates are created with the ability of customisation. Engineers can make a copy of the template and perform tweaks that suit the needs of their project. As such, instead of performing alternative calculations, they can take a template that follows much of the already desired features.
How CalcTree does engineering calculation templates
At CalcTree, we recognise the need for engineers to save time on their calculations without compromising quality. Our platform enables engineers to access engineering calculation templates from various disciplines, such as structural, mechanical and electrical. These templates can assist in calculating small tasks, such as determining the moment of inertia for a section to more complicated tasks, such as designing a steel column.
We want engineers to access a database where they can find just about anything they need to design their project. The calculation templates not only perform the calculations for you but are also accompanied by step-by-step explanations and intermediate values to help engineers better understand the design and calculation processes.
Once engineers finish their calculations, they can also upload their calculation template onto the CalcTree platform for others to access. With verified templates on the platform, engineers don’t have to worry about human error or not understanding what goes into their calculations.