Traditional evaluation of structural soundness relies on measurements, calculations, observations and assumptions, but now engineers have a new tool that brings a far greater level of precision to the processes. Photo: STRAAM A utility had to cut cladding on a cooling tower and worried how far it safely could go. Analysis showed it danced in the wind but was safe. Formed in 2008, Easton, Md.-based STRAAM LLC—which stands for “structural risk assessment and management”—offers a service that records movement in any kind of structure, from buildings and bridges to cooling towers and wind turbines. Its instruments report the least tilt,
The market is generally healthy and steadily growing, and margins are up for large specialty contractors. Further, advances in design tools and owner demand for collaboration are giving subcontractors a seat at the table early on in projects.