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SMA - Storage Manufacturers Association

SMA Glossary

AHJ (Authority Having Jurisdiction)

An organization, office, or individual responsible for enforcing the requirements stated in a building code or product standard, or for approving equipment, materials, installation, or a testing procedure typically associated with new construction.

AWS (American Welding Society) Certified

The AWS certification program is the leading US welding certification program. Established in 1919, the AWS Certified Welder program allows for welders to be certified to substantiate their qualifications.

Bar Grating

An open grid assembly of metal bars in which the bearing bars span between supports in one direction. The bars are spaced by rigid attachment to cross bars, rods, or bent bars extending between the bearing bars.


Usually notated as the horizontal load-carrying support member that is structurally joined to either vertical columns/posts or other stronger horizontal support members.


Vertical member within a work platform that supports an elevated decked surface.

Corrugated Decking

A formed sheet metal structural element typically associated with elevated platforms that spans across structural members to support engineered wood panels, floor plates, or concrete flooring.

CWB (Canadian Welding Bureau) Certified

Formed in 1947, the CWB is a certification and registration organization for companies involved in the welding of steel structures installed in Canada.


Refers to the type of flooring used on an elevated work platform or shelving pick module or the shelf decking associated with standard shelving units. Common decks include composite engineered wood or plywood, corrugated metal, bar or plank grating, steel plates, and concrete.


The movement or displacement of a structure or structural component due to the structure or member being loaded. Deflection is typically associated with the vertical movement of a beam or deck under load while sway is typically associated with the lateral (horizontal) movement of the structure under load.

Design Load

Overall specified loads applied to a work platform or shelving system. This represents the total anticipated weight that is imposed on the structure.

Elevated Work Platform

A structure consisting of vertical posts, horizontal floor beams, and a flooring surface that provides additional usable space by taking advantage of the unused vertical clearance within a building. Unlike a building ‘mezzanine’, it is not considered a permanent part of the building.


The International Building Code (IBC) is a model building code developed by the International Code Council (ICC). IBC has been adopted for use as a base code standard by most jurisdictions in the United States. The IBC is a comprehensive set of regulations for building and non-building systems consistent with and inclusive of the latest structural design and best practice.

Intermediate Landings

Used to break up a flight of stairs. They are typically used with L-shaped, U-shaped, or straight stairs exceeding 12’ in height.

LEED® (Leadership and Energy Efficient Design)

Developed by the U.S. Green Building Council, LEED certification provides a framework for green building design, construction, operations, and performance.

Load Plaque

A sign displayed that indicates maximum allowable load for which the system/structure was designed.


Occupational Safety and Health Administration, OSHA is a federal agency that establishes on-the-job safety protections for workers. OSHA’s mission is to ensure safe and healthy working conditions through setting and enforcing standards, and providing training, education, outreach, and compliance assistance.

Point Load

An applied concentrated load over a limited area. For example, where racking or shelving legs sit atop a work platform.


Vertical member within a shelving unit that supports the shelf beams, shelves, or elevated floors.

Prefabricated Catwalks

Elevated standard walkways limited to ‘foot’ traffic.

PSF (Pounds per Square Foot)

Unit of measure typically associated with the uniformly distributed live and dead design loads on an elevated platform or the wind, snow, and rain loads applied to outdoor structures.

Seismic Design Requirements

Seismic (earthquake) design requirements within a building code are enacted to protect property and life in buildings in case of earthquakes. Seismic design requirements were created and developed as a response to major earthquakes and the resulting devastation.

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