Span Span Engineermama13 (Civil/Environmental) (OP) 3 Jan 18 16:02 In the attached table what is it referring to with span? I have an awning that is NS direction 8ft 10in and EW direction 11ft 4in. The panel will be going with the ribs running EW. So by span do they mean width of panel or length? RE: Span ash060 (Structural) 3 Jan 18 16:10 The length. The distance between supports parallel to the ribs. The number of spans is related to the number of supports you have. RE: Span jrisebo (Structural) 3 Jan 18 18:28 I would say its the length, but the supports should be perpendicular to the ribs if you ask me. If you have supports parallel to the ribs, what is supporting the panel between the supports? Step in the middle and you are going to fold it up? No different than roof deck for a diaphram.