Originally Posted by chaarlie
I have to write a report for uni and so far your insights have helped a lot.
I'm a first year student so my breadth of knowledge isnt nearly as deep as yours.
I'm trying to gather information which compares reinforced concrete to structural steel
Your knowledge would be greatly appreciated
I've seen it as mainly economics.
Whenever we've had competing design proposals in Vegas, the additional space requirements of steel construction make concrete the overall preferred choice.
In Hawaii, we used almost 99% RC construction as all steel has to be imported, including the rebars for concrete. Concrete can be produced locally.
Also depends on the familiarity of the local construction trades. If most are familiar with steel, and it's readily available, then steel is used. If concrete, likewise. Things seem to be moving in favor of concrete, tho, more and more.
Concrete is pretty simple and space saving. Usually you need just a 9" flat slab with no "beams". Steel requires beams plus the framing for the deck - which takes up space in the floor-to-floor height compared to concrete. Also, concrete lends itself to wonderful complicated shapes with minimal effort with the added benefit of being naturally "fireproof" without the need for any additional fireproofing.