We are independent & ad-supported. We may earn a commission for purchases made through our links.
Advertiser Disclosure
Our website is an independent, advertising-supported platform. We provide our content free of charge to our readers, and to keep it that way, we rely on revenue generated through advertisements and affiliate partnerships. This means that when you click on certain links on our site and make a purchase, we may earn a commission. Learn more.
How We Make Money
We sustain our operations through affiliate commissions and advertising. If you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase, we may receive a commission from the merchant at no additional cost to you. We also display advertisements on our website, which help generate revenue to support our work and keep our content free for readers. Our editorial team operates independently of our advertising and affiliate partnerships to ensure that our content remains unbiased and focused on providing you with the best information and recommendations based on thorough research and honest evaluations. To remain transparent, we’ve provided a list of our current affiliate partners here.

What Is a Lattice Girder?

By Jo Dunaway
Updated May 21, 2024
Our promise to you
All The Science is dedicated to creating trustworthy, high-quality content that always prioritizes transparency, integrity, and inclusivity above all else. Our ensure that our content creation and review process includes rigorous fact-checking, evidence-based, and continual updates to ensure accuracy and reliability.

Our Promise to you

Founded in 2002, our company has been a trusted resource for readers seeking informative and engaging content. Our dedication to quality remains unwavering—and will never change. We follow a strict editorial policy, ensuring that our content is authored by highly qualified professionals and edited by subject matter experts. This guarantees that everything we publish is objective, accurate, and trustworthy.

Over the years, we've refined our approach to cover a wide range of topics, providing readers with reliable and practical advice to enhance their knowledge and skills. That's why millions of readers turn to us each year. Join us in celebrating the joy of learning, guided by standards you can trust.

Editorial Standards

At All The Science, we are committed to creating content that you can trust. Our editorial process is designed to ensure that every piece of content we publish is accurate, reliable, and informative.

Our team of experienced writers and editors follows a strict set of guidelines to ensure the highest quality content. We conduct thorough research, fact-check all information, and rely on credible sources to back up our claims. Our content is reviewed by subject-matter experts to ensure accuracy and clarity.

We believe in transparency and maintain editorial independence from our advertisers. Our team does not receive direct compensation from advertisers, allowing us to create unbiased content that prioritizes your interests.

A lattice girder is a type of girder with a criss-crossed web design, such as in gardening lattices, between the two edges of the girder. The diagonal lines of steel give support in all directions, helping to prevent the girder, which is one of the main support elements in a bridge design, from bending. Often seen on older bridges or buildings, lattice girders are also widely used in mining tunnels for roof support during excavations and can be erected quickly. They are also used for reinforcement when applying shotcrete, a form of concrete or mortar pneumatically applied at high velocity from a hose to construction supports.

One of the most well-known examples of lattice girder design is France's Eiffel Tower, built in latticed iron in the 1800s. Lattice girders are not used so much in building or bridges anymore as they have been replaced by solid steel plate girders. Tunneling operations, however, make good use of them as they are lightweight and can be easily assembled on uneven floor and wall surfaces with few workers. A lattice girder can be used as is or covered in shotcrete for additional load strength. Modern lattice girders are most often used in the 3-bar or 4-bar configurations, and the diagonal stiffening delivers load along the entire length of the bars for resistance.

In tunneling operations, a lattice girder is often chosen over a steel plate girder as it can be completely embedded in a shotcrete lining that allows for the easier molding of walls within a tunnel. It can adjust well to differing ground levels and provide a covering with the shotcrete that keeps out water. Static load studies have shown that even when not encased, the lattice girder has high load-bearing capability; it can handle loads well even when the shotcrete is still curing and soft. The ability to easily deform the girders to match the walls and flooring of a tunnel without affecting the load-bearing is why lattice girders are so trusted in mining projects.

Lattice girders are also used as a component to provide structure load bearing support for floors that will handle heavy loads. They are used to create what are called lattice girder slabs for high capacities. In curving wall designs, their surfaces can be bonded with polystyrene void-formers to reduce wall weight loads. A lattice girder can be a component in accommodating large arched openings when using these void-formers, due to the reduced weight load.

All The Science is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Discussion Comments
By LisaLou — On Aug 02, 2011

I planted two Chinese wisteria plants that will grow very tall and be quite heavy when they reach maturity. When I was looking for support for these plants, I decided to use a lattice girder because of their sturdiness.

Many types of support for trailing or climbing plants are not designed for a lot of weight. It has taken a few years for my wisteria to get very big, but I can see that in a few years, I will be glad I went with support that will handle quite a bit of weight.

By lighth0se33 — On Aug 02, 2011

I can attest to the power of lattice girder design to hold up even when made of normally weak materials. In my three-dimensional art class in college, we had to build a tower from spaghetti. My partner and I chose the lattice design, because the tower had to withstand pressure.

We glued several strands of raw spaghetti together to make each beam. The process was tedious, because we built the tower seven feet high.

I believe it took us three weeks of class to complete it. Our design paid off in the end, as our building won the strength test.

By orangey03 — On Aug 01, 2011

I have a lattice girder in my garden. I had never noticed before reading this that the Eiffel Tower uses one. I can see how the design could provide massive amounts of support.

My lattice girder is made of stained wood. I use it to support my climbing roses. The vines get pretty thick, and the huge blooms might cause an ordinary support beam to topple over under their weight. The lattice girder never tilts under the pressure.

Lattice girders are the top choice to support all types of flowering vines. My neighbors use them for honeysuckle and starflower vines, which completely cover the girder when fully grown.

All The Science, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.

All The Science, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.