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Tension-only elements can be modeled using all versions of ETABS. The process is as follows:

  1. Select the elements to be specified as tension-only.
  2. Specify the tension limit (usually a limit higher than expected maximum tension capacity) and a compression limit of zero (or negative) through Assign > Frame/Line > Tension/Compression Limits.
  3. Define and Run a nonlinear static or nonlinear time-history analysis. This is necessary since tension-only assignment is a nonlinear feature. See below on how to convert any load case or combination to nonlinear.

Any load case or combination may be converted to a nonlinear analysis as follows:

  1. Select the case(s) through Define > Convert Combos to Nonlinear Cases
  2. Add the nonlinear case(s) to a user-defined combination with a scale factor of 1.0.
  3. For design, you can select  the created nonlinear combination as design load combinations.
  4. Perform design.

Please note that  response-spectrum analysis only applies to linear systems. Further, response-spectrum loads cannot be converted to nonlinear cases.

See Also