Last month, Hurricane Ian ravaged the state of Florida leaving around 100 people dead. Here in Lethbridge, we also deal with very strong winds on a daily basis. That inspired two former Lethbridge College students to research the the sturdiest roof truss to top plate connection methods to prevent extra damage from devastating winds. The former students are now finalists for the ASET Capstone Project of the Year Award. The winners will be announced later this year and students and staff explained how the technology works. This new technology has already been used out in the field and there are plans to continue with it further down the line.
“So essentially what we did is we constructed multiple samples of three different connection types. Traditional three nailed toe nailing, a hurricane tie connection, and a structural threaded screw. We took all of these connection types, we loaded them into a universal testing machine at the Lethbridge College. That machine puts a tensile force on the sample, which eventually causes a failure, which is recorded. And we were able to identify that failure point,” says John Burt, one of the former Lethbridge College students nominated for the award.
“To be able to secure those roof trusses to the top plate the way they have really increases the complete chances of survival in a high windstorm. But what’s more, it makes it safer. I think it’s safer to be able to install the trusses,” says ASET CEO Barry Cavanaugh.
This new technology has already been used out in the field and there are plans to continue with it further down the line.