Mitigation of earthquake hazards using seismic isolation systems Page: 1 of 4
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MITIGATION OF EARTHQUAKE HAZARDS USING
SEISMIC ISOLATION SYSTEMS
Argonne National Laboratory
9700 S. Cass Avenue
Argonne, IL 60439 USA
This paper describes mitigation of earthquake
hazards using seismic base isolation systems. A
numerical algorithm for analyzing system
response of base-isolated structures with
laminated elastomer bearings is briefly described.
Seismic response analyses of both base-isolated
and unisolated buildings under earthquakes #42
and #44 are performed and the results are
compared to illustrate the mitigating effect of
Seismic isolation represents a significant
engineering breakthrough in structural designs
due to its capabilities of protecting structures and
their contents from earthquake damage. One main
concept in base isolation is to reduce the
fundamental frequency of structural vibration to a
value lower than the energy-containing
frequencies of earthquake ground motions. The
other purpose of an isolation system is to provide
a mechanism for energy dissipation and to reduce
the transmitted accelerations to the superstructure.
In other words, by using base-isolation devices at
the foundation of a structure, the structure is
essentially decoupled from ground motion during
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Recently, seismic isolation has become extremely
attractive in seismically active regions such as
Japan and the West Coast, USA, especially after
China's Tang-san and Japan's Kobe earthquakes.
Structures that have been incorporated with base
isolation systems include bridges, office
buildings, hospitals, computer and communication
centers, and nuclear facilities. Presently, Japan is
the leading country in rapidly adopting the
seismic isolation technology. In fact, up to now
there are about seventy buildings in the Tokyo
metropolitan area that have been installed with
different types of isolation systems.
One type of seismic isolation system currently
being widely used is the laminated elastomer
bearing. It uses high-damping elastomer layered
between metallic plates (shims). The design is
very attractive because it combines the restoring
and dissipating functions of an isolator into one
compact, maintenance-free unit.
SYSTEM ANALYSIS PROGRAM
As part of the analytical development, a 3-D
computer program, Seismic Isolation System
Evaluation Code (SISEC) , was developed at
Argonne National Laboratory (ANL). The aim of
this code is to determine the desired global
response characteristics of the isolators and
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Wang, C.-Y. Mitigation of earthquake hazards using seismic isolation systems, article, June 1, 1996; Illinois. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc667864/m1/1/: accessed September 24, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.