As part of an On-Call contract with the University of Connecticut, DTC engineers designed a structural system to support the installation of a modern sculpture created by artist Jonathan Clowes.
The $1 million sculpture was installed in the lobby atrium in the UConn School of Pharmacy/Biology building and is visible from the first three floors.
The art piece, which weighs roughly 300 pounds, has eight different support locations hanging from the ceiling. Although the weight is relatively low, DTC structural engineers considered the cost of the sculpture and the safety of students and staff when making design decisions.
To support the sculpture, unistruts were hung between the existing steel beams and hidden within the ceiling. The unistructs were then braced to the existing beams with diagonal members to create a rigid support from which to hang the sculpture.
The unistruts were hung roughly 2.5 feet below the beams to avoid conflicts with the existing utilities, fire sprinklers, and duct work. The project schedule lasted a little less than a week and was completed in time to welcome students back from spring break.