Structural Platforms: An In-Depth Guide

A structural platform or civil platform is normally a horizontal surface at an elevated level usually provided for maintenance and easy access (operation) to required items such as valves, instruments, etc. Sometimes pipes and piping items can be supported from platforms. There is an abundant use of structural platforms in Oil & Gas and Power Plant Industry. Piping loads have to be transferred to the Civil and Structural Department after stress analysis for taking consideration into platform design. However, heavy loads are not normally supported by platforms. At the same time, platforms are generally not designed for high horizontal loads. In such situations, some alternate structural arrangement is recommended.

Types of Structural Platforms:

Refer Fig. 1, 2 and 3 for visualization of structural platforms. Normally 3 types of structural platforms are used in Oil and Gas/ Power Plant Industry, and those are:

  • OPERATING: Used for personnel movement for operating the valves/switch panels only
  • MAINTAINANCE: Used for maintenance of valves/equipment
  • MANIFOLDS: number of pipes are branching in one line
Typical Platform 1
Fig. 1: Typical Structural Platform 1
Typical Platform 2
Fig. 2: Typical Platform 2
Typical Platform 3
Fig. 3: Typical Platform 3

Inputs for Designing Structural platform:

  • PIPING LAYOUT: Piping layout will reflect the needs of platforms.
  • SIZE AND ELEVATIONS will be provided
  • PIPE SUPPORT LOADING (IF ANY)
  • NORMAL LIVE LOADS
    • Access walkways: 250 kg/sq.m
    • Operating floors: 500 kg/sq.m
    • Special case(heat exchanger): 750 kg/sq.m

Approach to Structural Platforms:

Depending on the use of structural platforms and space availability, ladders or staircases are used for ascending and descending purposes,

Standard drawings for:

  • ladders
  • staircase

Covering of Platform:

  • Gratings and chequered plates as the covering of platforms depends on the use
  • Standard drawing: Grating

Protection in Platform:

  • Handrails to protect the personnel from falling.
  • Standard drawing: Handrails

Some More Resources for You

Piping Design and Layout,
Piping Stress Analysis,
Piping Interface,
Piping Material,
Piping Design Software ,
Civil Structural

References (External Link):

https://www.sciencedirect.com/topics/engineering/platform-design

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Anup Kumar Dey

I am a Mechanical Engineer turned into a Piping Engineer. Currently, I work in a reputed MNC as a Senior Piping Stress Engineer. I am very much passionate about blogging and always tried to do unique things. This website is my first venture into the world of blogging with the aim of connecting with other piping engineers around the world.

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