Secure Design

Secure Design

Walter P Moore provides a full range of secure design services that create practical, technologically advanced solutions for physical security and structural protection against threats from natural disasters and terrorism. 

Fully integrated with our structural design capabilities, our secure design services include preliminary security planning and site layout, threat and risk assessment and mitigation, designs to resist extreme loadings, protection from blast, progressive collapse, forced entry, ballistics, and vehicle ramming.

Our specialty team of secure design engineers also provides blast load prediction, vehicle ramming threat analysis, secure design of glazing and framing, and structural component response prediction for elements subjected to blast loading. Single and multiple degree-of-freedom tools and finite element analysis help us determine structural response to complex dynamic loadings.

Walter P Moore’s designs fully incorporate various General Services Administration (GSA), Department of Defense (DOD), and Department of Veterans Affairs design criteria documents. Our team is active in the physical security community, including participation in further development of these documents and design methods for use throughout the industry.


Threat and Protection Criteria

Our secure design specialists work closely with clients to assess potential threats and vulnerabilities to their facility, and convert those threats into appropriate protection design criteria. We then create an appropriate plan of protection based on the proper interpretation and application of relevant design guidelines and criteria, including those published by the Interagency Security Committee, the GSA, the Department of State, the Transportation Security Administration (TSA), and DOD. Our engineers stay abreast of threat-resistant design changes through interaction with these government agencies and with code bodies such as the American Society of Civil Engineers, American Concrete Institute, American Institute of Steel Construction, and ASTM International (formerly American Society for Testing and Materials).


Blast Design

Blast design for deliberate explosive attacks or for accidental explosions at industrial facilities is accomplished through techniques such as single- and multiple-degree-of-freedom (SDOF/MDOF) analyses and finite element tools. We use state-of-the-practice tools for blast load prediction and for SDOF response calculation. Combined with our structural engineering design services, our blast design expertise gives clients an integrated and coordinated solution to complex facility design to achieve cost-effective solutions sensitive to client needs.


Bullet- and Forced-Entry-Resistant Design

Depending on the threat, glazing, cladding, and partitions may be required to resist bullet impact or a physical, forced-entry attack. Our secure design specialists understand government, ASTM, and Underwriters Laboratory (UL) standards related to these threats, and have experience in the selection, design, and detailing of building components to resist this type of attack.


Glass Hazard Mitigation

From “punched” building openings and windows to multi-story glass curtain walls, our secure design specialists support architects by performing analyses to aid in the selection of efficient and attractive glass systems. The latest design and analysis tools from the GSA and the Army Corps of Engineers (WinGARD, SBEDS-W and HazL) are used along with nonlinear, dynamic numerical predictions to create inviting lobbies and building glass that provides required levels of blast protection.


Progressive Collapse Design and Analysis

Our secure design engineers are familiar with current GSA and DOD criteria documents and have worked with the U.S. Department of Defense to develop new Unified Facilities Criteria (UFC) 4-023-03, “Design of Buildings to Resist Progressive Collapse.” We perform the requisite static equivalent, static nonlinear or dynamic, nonlinear analysis with our standard design tools (SAP and ETABS) or with finite element analysis (ANSYS) for more demanding problems.


Ram-Resistant Construction

Where a structure is vulnerable to possible vehicular attacks, we assist clients in several ways. First, we collaborate with our traffic and parking specialists to achieve optimal site layout and develop strategies to reduce access, minimize run-up speeds, and control vehicular pathways. Where passive ram-resisting systems are required, we help the client select appropriate systems such as operable bollards and high-security gates. These systems can be integrated with existing or new building systems.


Structural Retrofits and Hardening

We can provide comprehensive strategies and design to harden new and existing buildings, thereby minimizing damage from the effects of blast events. Retrofits and hardening of key structural elements employ the latest materials and techniques, including strengthening by the addition of composite fiber wraps, steel jackets, or concrete encasement.

Matt Nebel PE - Walter P Moore

Matt Nebel
Secure Design



Learn how we can assist you with the SAFETY Act here.