Shake table testing and numerical simulation of a self-centering energy dissipative braced frame


Correspondence to: Constantin Christopoulos, Department of Civil Engineering, University of Toronto, 35 St. George Street, Toronto, ON M5S 1A4, Canada.



The self-centering energy dissipative (SCED) brace is a new steel bracing member that provides both damping to the structure and a re-centering capability. The goal of this study was to confirm the behavior of SCED braces within complete structural systems and to confirm the ability to model these systems with both a state-of-the-art computer model as well as a simplified model that would be useful to practicing engineers. To these ends, a three-story SCED-braced frame was designed and constructed for testing on a shake table. Two concurrent computer models of the entire frame were constructed: one using the opensees nonlinear dynamic modeling software, and a simplified model using the commercial structural analysis software sap2000. The frame specimen was subjected to 12 significant earthquakes without any adjustment or modification between the tests. The SCED braces prevented residual drifts in the frame, as designed, and did not show any significant degradation due to wear. Both numerical models were able to predict the drifts, story shears, and column forces well. Peak story accelerations were overestimated in the models; this effect was found to be caused by the absence of transitions at stiffness changes in the hysteretic model of the braces. Copyright © 2013 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.