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Wind and Structures
  Volume 16, Number 6, June 2013 , pages 617-627

Proposed approach for determination of tributary areas for scattered pressure taps
Aly Mousaad ALY

    In wind load calculations based on pressure measurements, the concept of \'tributary area\' is usually used. The literature has less guidance for a systematic computational methodology for calculating tributary areas, in general, and for scattered pressure taps, in particular. To the best of the authos\'s knowledge, there is no generic mathematical equation that helps calculate the tributary areas for irregular pressure taps. Traditionally, the drawing of tributary boundaries for scattered and intensively distributed taps may not be feasible (a time and resource consuming task). To alleviate this problem, this paper presents a proposed numerical approach for tributary area calculations on rectangular surfaces. The approach makes use of the available coordinates of the pressure taps and the dimensions of the surface. The proposed technique is illustrated by two application examples: first, quasi-regularly distributed pressure taps, and second, taps that have scattered distribution on a rectangular surface. The accuracy and the efficacy of the approach are assessed, and a comparison with a traditional method is presented.
Key Words
    tributary area; pressure taps; data interpolation; three-dimensional mesh; delaunay triangulation; MATLAB
Aly Mousaad ALY : Civil and Environmental Engineering, Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, Louisiana, USA

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