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The EXPAN Design Guidelines are here with everything you need to know about portal frames.

After months and months of work, the EXPAN Design Guidelines for Timber Portal Frames are ready for release.


An invaluable resource for engineers, builders and architects, these guidelines have been painstakenly put together by an experienced team to give a comprehensive perspective on how to use this fantastic system.


The Timber Portal Frame design guidelines are the first set to the completed, in versions applicable to Australia and New Zealand and have been introduced via a series of workshop sessions in key cities across both countries, including Brisbane, Melbourne, Sydney, Newcastle, Perth, Adelaide, Hobart, Auckland, North Shore, South Auckland, New Plymouth, Hamilton, Napier, Wellington, Nelson, Christchurch, Dunedin and Tauranga.


You can receive a free copy of the Design Guidelines by completing and returning the appropriate license.


EXPAN is fortunate to have the skills and expertise of respected authors in Pierre Quenneville, Steffen Franke and Tim Swagger.



Professor of Timber Design


Professor of Timber Design in the Civil and Environmental Engineering Department at the University of Auckland since 2007, Pierre has expertise in the design and detailing of connections of timber structures for non-residential construction. Educated in Canada as a structural engineer, he has been involved in many timber structures design as a consultant and professional engineer.


He has lead the fastenings sub-committee of the Canadian wood design standard CAN\CSA-086 technical committee between 1996 and 2009. He is leading the Timber Research Group at the University of Auckland and is involved with the revision of the New Zealand timber structures standard. Within the Structural Timber Innovation Company (STIC), he is responsible for objective 1 – Long Span Roofs and Connections.


Postdoctoral Research Fellow


Steffen is a Civil engineer with special interest in structural connections, timber engineering, material research and finite element analysis. He graduated in structural engineering in Germany 2001, and completed his PhD in 2008. His research was focused on the investigation of timber with a photogrammetric measuring system that he developed. Steffen has been in the academic and research field since 2001. He authored national and international scientific and research papers and coauthored a book titled “Holzkonstruktionen in Mischbauweise” (Timber Composite Constructions) published in Germany. Since 2008, he has been working as a Postdoctoral Research Fellow in Timber Design at the University of Auckland in New Zealand.


Master of Engineering


Tim completed his Master of Engineering at the University of Auckland in 2010, focusing on the development of the Timber Portal Frame Design Guide. He was awarded the University of Auckland Scholarship for Undergraduate Study, completing his Bachelor of Engineering in 2009, gaining a Senior Prize in his final year of study and graduating with first class honours. He has contributed to timber research at the University of Auckland for two years. Before working on the Timber Portal Frame Design Guide he was involved in researching a long span timber floor concept based on the North American stub-girder system.


With the commissioning of this document, the Structural Timber Innovation Company (STIC) wished to provide a comprehensive tool so that important components of timber portal frames are designed using accepted state-of-the-art guidelines and that these guidelines be accessible to as wide an audience as possible, including practising engineers, architects, fabricators, students and developers.





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