Predicting the rocking response of structures to ground motion is important for assessment of existing structures, which may be vulnerable to uplift and overturning, as well as for designs which employ rocking as a means of seismic isolation. However, the majority of studies utilize a single rocking block to characterize rocking motion. In this paper, a methodology is proposed to derive equivalence between the single rocking block and various rocking mechanisms, yielding a set of fundamental rocking parameters. Specific structures that have exact dynamic equivalence with a single rocking block, are first reviewed. Subsequently, approximate equivalence between single and multiple block mechanisms is achieved through local linearization of the relevant equations of motion. The approximation error associated with linearization is quantified for three essential mechanisms, providing a measure of the confidence with which the proposed methodology can be applied. Copyright © 2014 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
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