On Nov. 2, 2021, at IFAI Expo in Nashville, Tenn., Timothy Akes, representative for the Americas, MPanel Software Solutions, and Andrew Askwith, senior software developer, MPanel Software Solutions, presented the education session “Shade Sail Engineering—It’s Not Just a Bunch of Numbers.”
According to Akes, there is a tendency for shade sail engineering to be relegated at the stage before construction begins, which can be expensive and time-consuming. Companies should instead aim to involve engineers during the initial stages of a new shade sail project.
Aswith guided education session attendees through a live demonstration of MPanel’s software and highlighted the program’s unique ability to apply various loads—such as wind, snow and rain—to determine a shade structure’s sail displacement, fabric stresses, cable tensions, and pole and footer sizing locations. By utilizing modern software, companies involved in shade sail engineering can better design and install shade structures that are structurally sound and able to weather outdoor elements.