Patent application title: System for Anchoring Precast Concrete Wall Columns to Foundations
Walter Victor Kurczynski (Temecula, CA, US)
Jens Henrik Eskildsen (Give, DK)
EURO PRECAST CONCRETE, LLC
IPC8 Class: AE02D2700FI
Class name: Footing or foundation type for a wall with wall-securing means between wall bottom and footing (e.g., sill or sill plate)
Publication date: 2012-12-06
Patent application number: 20120304564
A wall structure system may utilize precast concrete columns and panels.
Each concrete column may be secured to an in-situ concrete footing by a
threaded anchor bolt imbedded in the footing. The column may be
positioned onto the footing so that the exposed threaded rod extends
through a cylindrical opening in the bottom of the column. A washer and
threaded nut may be installed on the threaded rod and secured through an
access port in the side of the concrete column. Wall panels may be
installed by sliding them into vertical slots in the columns, thereby
concealing locations of the access ports.
1. A system comprising: at least one precast concrete panel and at least
a first precast concrete column and a second precast concrete column;
each of said columns supported on a spaced-apart in-situ concrete
footing; wherein said at least first precast concrete column and said at
least second precast concrete column being of like construction and like
configuration characteristics will hereby be referred to as said column
when such characteristics are being disclosed; said column having a
vertically extending elongated slot on at least one side wall of said
column; said slot extending from bottom surface of said column to top
surface of said column; said slot greater than or equal to thickness of
portion of said panel received by said column; said column attached to
said footing by column attachment means; said column attachment means
including tension means, said tension means connected to said column and
to said footing; wherein first said column and second said columns are
positioned on adjacent said footings, such that said slot in each said
column is positioned directly towards, opposite in direction; and
substantially coplanar to said slot in opposite column; wherein a lower
surface of said column may be compressed against an upper surface of said
footing; whereby said column is fixedly fastened to said footing by said
column attachment means; whereby said panel is positioned such that said
panel is interposed between said columns, opposing vertical edges of
first and second opposite ends suitably engaging said vertical slots of
adjacent said columns.
2. The system of claim 1, further comprising: said column attachment means including a vertically extending anchor rod; lower end of said vertically extending anchor rod partially encased in said in-situ concrete footing; said vertically extending anchor rod having external threading at distal end.
3. The system of claim 2, further comprising: said column attachment means including said column having a vertically-oriented hole at bottom surface of each column; said hole located substantially on vertical axis of concrete column; said vertically-oriented hole extending inward to form vertical passageway; said vertical passageway terminating at intersection of horizontally-oriented access port in said column; said horizontally-oriented access port in said column disposed between bottom surface of said column and top surface of said column; said column attachment means including said column positioned on said footing so that said steel anchor bar penetrates said hole and extends through said passageway such that threaded distal end of said steel anchor bar protrudes to position above bottom horizontal surface of said horizontally-oriented access port.
4. The system of claim 3, further comprising: at least one nut having internal threading operatively engaging threading on said vertically extending anchor rod; a lower surface of said nut engaging a column surface parallel to bottom horizontal surface of said horizontally-oriented access port; said nut being adjustable, whereby to cause tensioning of said vertically extending anchor rod, between said footing and said distal end.
5. The system of claim 4, further comprising: at least one washer including hole at center; said at least one washer positioned over said distal end of said vertically extending anchor rod; said at least one washer positioned between said nut and said column surface; by which said column is fixedly fastened against said footing by turning said at least one nut, in order to tighten said at least one nut against said at least one washer, thereby causing tensioning to occur between said at least one washer and said footing.
CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS
 Not Applicable
STATEMENT REGARDING FEDERALLY SPONSORED RESEARCH OR DEVELOPMENT
 Not Applicable
 1. The Field of the Invention
 The present invention relates generally to wall systems utilizing precast concrete columns and wall panels made of precast concrete or other materials, and more particularly to mechanisms for attaching these systems to footings constructed of cast-in-situ concrete.
 2. Description of Related Art
 The building construction industry has increasingly utilized precast concrete structures due to the many advantages precast products offer when compared to cast-in-situ concrete methods. Precast production techniques allow higher quality products to be formed due to controlled environmental conditions, specialized equipment, and strict quality standards. The factory environment allows greater efficiency and labor savings due to the utilization of reusable forms instead of constructing forms at the job site. The use of precast concrete products may also reduce construction delays related to the inability to pour cast-in-situ concrete in inclement weather.
 Precast concrete columns allow for simplified and therefore expedient construction methods when utilized in solo as architectural design features or when used in conjunction with wall panels of concrete or other materials.
 Local building codes applicable to precast concrete column and panel wall construction typically require a firm foundation for each spaced apart column, provided by excavation and installation of a steel reinforced cast-in-situ concrete footing at the location of each column. After sufficient curing of the concrete footings has occurred, placement and securing of the columns (and wall panels) can proceed.
 Common building industry practices include the application of wet concrete or grout at the base or interior cavity of precast columns and/or wall panels to secure their position. The wet concrete or grout, whether procured as ready-mixed or mixed on site, requires that such materials be transported to the construction site. Time and labor is required to mix and/or apply the wet concrete or grout and clean the related tools afterwards. After application of the wet concrete or grout is complete, subsequent construction operations may be delayed until the applied concrete or grout is sufficiently cured.
 Other building practices that may not include the application of wet concrete or grout to secure a precast concrete column to a footing include comparatively costly and/or complex systems that may include tensioned cables, welded structural steel elements or multiple brackets. Many of these systems require that the precast column include a hollow interior space and opening at the top surface, in order to access and secure the fastening apparatus within. Other systems may require that a tensioning rod or bar extend vertically through the column, with a threaded nut or bolt bearing against a surface at or near the top. Both of the aforementioned systems typically require a cap or cover to conceal the fastening hardware or hollow void in the column, thereby increasing production and transportation costs. A required cap or cover may also restrict the range of possible aesthetic designs of the structure.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION
 The present invention provides a novel method of connecting and securing a precast concrete column to an intermittent (spaced apart) foundation, as a part of the method of constructing a wall or barrier. Each concrete column is be secured to a cast-in-situ concrete footing by means of a threaded member imbedded in the concrete footing. The column is lifted vertically and lowered onto the footing so that the exposed threaded member extends through a narrow cylindrical opening in bottom of the concrete column. Through one or more access ports in the side of the column, a washer is positioned over the end of the threaded member and a nut is threaded onto the member and tightened, causing tension in the threaded member, fixedly attaching the concrete column to the foundation.
 The column may include one or more vertical slots for receiving wall panels. Wall panels are lifted vertically and slid downward into two opposing vertical slots between two installed precast columns. The installed wall panels conceal the access port(s) in the side(s) of the column.
 The present invention provides a novel method of connecting and securing a concrete column to a footing or foundation.
 Among the objectives of this invention is to provide a method of assembly for a precast concrete column and panel wall system.
 Another objective of this invention is to reduce the amount of time required to install a precast concrete column and panel system by reducing the complexity and thus the time required to securely fasten a precast concrete column to a precast or cast-in-situ concrete footing.
 Another objective of this invention is to provide a precast concrete column and panel wall system that does not require enclosing or covering the top surface of the precast concrete columns, thereby simplifying the column design, reducing the required components and production costs, and reducing restrictions on the aesthetic design parameters.
 Still another objective of this invention is to provide a precast concrete column and panel wall system that does not include exposed mounting or fastening brackets, braces or hardware, and is thus aesthetically pleasing.
 Another objective of this invention is to provide a precast concrete column and panel wall system having a high resistance to wind load.
 Yet another objective of this invention is to provide a precast concrete column and panel wall system that is simpler to disassemble and move if required, as when roadways are widened or reconfigured.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF DRAWINGS
 FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a partial section of a concrete wall construction including precast concrete columns and panels, and cast-in-situ concrete footings.
 FIG. 2 is a cross-sectional side view of a concrete wall construction including column, panels and footing.
 FIG. 3 is a cross-sectional view taken along the section plane 3-3 in FIG. 2.
 FIG. 4 is an end view of a precast concrete column including a vertical slot in one side face.
 FIG. 5 is an end view of a precast concrete column including a vertical slot in two opposing side faces.
 FIG. 6 is an end view of a precast concrete column including a vertical slot in two adjacent side faces.
 FIG. 7 is an end view of a precast concrete column including a vertical slot in three side faces.
DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS
 FIG. 1 is a break-away perspective view of a partial section of wall structure including cast-in-situ footing 2 and panel 3 and column 4. Said wall structure comprises a plurality of adjoining panels 3 and columns 4.
 Referring to FIG. 2, a cross-sectional side view depicts column 4 and footing 2, threaded member 5, and break-away portions of panel 3. It will be recognized that the footing 2 will be cast-in-situ in a manner known to those skilled in the art, and that all physical characteristics of footing 2 pertaining to external dimensions, configuration of reinforcing steel 7 and concrete formulation may be provided in any suitable manner known to those skilled in the art.
 Referring to FIG. 2, it will be understood that the panel 3 and column 4 may be formed of precast concrete, and may also include reinforcing steel elements 11, as depicted in dashed lines in FIGS. 2 and 3. It will be recognized that the configuration of reinforcing steel elements 11, as well as the concrete formulation may be provided in any suitable manner known to those skilled in the art to provide proper strength and durability characteristics. It will also be recognized that some of the embodiments of the panel 3 and column 4 may not include reinforcing steel.
 Referring again to FIG. 2, it will be recognized that the anchor rod 5 may be formed of steel or any other suitable material known to those skilled in the art and that the anchor rod may be of any suitable size within the scope of the current disclosure. It will also be recognized that the end of the anchor rod 5 embedded in the footing 2 may be of any size, shape and configuration known to those skilled in the art to provide suitable strength and durability characteristics.
 Referring yet again to FIG. 2, it will be recognized that a washer 9 will be positioned on anchor rod 5, and that a threaded nut 10 will be engaged on the threads of anchor rod 5, and fixedly fastened, thereby inducing tension in the anchor rod 5. It will be understood that the washer 9 and the threaded nut 10 may be of any size, shape and configuration known to those skilled in the art to provide suitable strength and durability characteristics.
 Referring once more to FIG. 2, it will be recognized that in another embodiment of the present invention, the panel 3 may be comprised of building materials other than concrete.
 FIGS. 2 and 3 depict an opening, access port 8 extending horizontally from one side surface of the column 4 to the opposite side surface, and coplanar to the panels 3. Thus, prior to installation of panels 3, access port 8 provides access from two possible directions to install and secure washer 9 and the threaded nut 10 on the anchor rod 5.
 It will be understood that in another embodiment of this invention, access port 8 as depicted in FIGS. 2 and 3 may form an opening or passage to only one side of the column 4, instead of to two sides; thereby permitting access from one direction only, for purposes of installing and securing washer 9 and the threaded nut 10 on the anchor rod 5.
 FIG. 3 depicts a cross-sectional view of column 4 at line 3-3 of FIG. 2. In horizontal cross-section, column 4 has a generally square cross-section, and is provided with two inwardly-extending elongated slots 12 on opposite sides of column 4, for purposes of receiving the panel 3.
 FIG. 4 illustrates a top view of an alternative column 4a utilized at an end or terminated position in a wall structure. A slot 12a may be formed on one side of said column, to receive a precast panel.
 FIG. 5 depicts a top view of column 4b utilized at an intermediate position in a wall structure comprising a multitude of columns and panels. Slots 12b may be formed on opposite sides of said column, to receive wall panels that extend generally parallel to each other.
 FIG. 6 depicts a top view of an alternative column 4c utilized at the corner position in a wall structure. Slots 12c for the purpose of receiving a wall panel may be formed on adjacent sides of said column, such that the column may form a corner with panels extending perpendicular to each other.
 FIG. 7 illustrates a top view of an alternative column 4d utilized at the position of the intersection of one wall structure with another wall structure. Slots 12d for the purpose of receiving wall panels may be formed in three sides of said column, such that two panels extend substantially parallel to each other, and a third panel extends perpendicular to the aforementioned panels.
 It is to be recognized that the various arrangements described above in this disclosure are only illustrative of the application of the principles of the present invention. Numerous alternative arrangements and modifications may be devised by those skilled in the art without departing from the spirit and scope of the present invention, and the appended claims are intended to cover such arrangements and modifications. While the present invention has been depicted in the drawings and fully described in this disclosure in considerable detail in connection with what is presently deemed to be the most practical and preferred embodiments of the invention, it will be apparent to those of ordinary skill in the art that numerous alterations and modifications, including, but not limited to, variations in size, form, shape, function, materials, and manner of construction and use may be made, without departing from the concepts and principles of the present invention as set forth in the claims.
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Patent applications in class With wall-securing means between wall bottom and footing (e.g., sill or sill plate)
Patent applications in all subclasses With wall-securing means between wall bottom and footing (e.g., sill or sill plate)