First Advisor

Peter Dusicka

Date of Publication

Spring 7-15-2016

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Civil & Environmental Engineering


Civil and Environmental Engineering




Structural frames -- Design and construction, Structural frames -- Earthquake effects -- Testing, Earthquake resistant design



Physical Description

1 online resource (xviii, 316 pages)


The Linked Column Frame (LCF) is a new brace-free lateral structural steel system intended for rapid return to occupancy performance level. LCF is more resilient under a design level earthquake than the conventional approaches. The structural system consists of moment frames for gravity that combines with closely spaced dual columns (LC) interconnected with bolted links for the lateral system. The LC links are sacrificial and intended to be replaced following a design level earthquake. The centerpiece of this work was a unique full-scale experiment using hybrid simulation testing; a combination of physical test of a critical sub-system tied to a numerical model of the building frame. Hybrid simulation testing allows for full scale study at the system level accounting for the uncertainties via experimental component and having the ability to model more conventional behavior through numerical simulation. The experimental subsystem consisted of a two story LCF frame with a single bay while the remainder of the building was numerically modeled. Two actuators per story were connected to the specimen. The LC links have been designed to be short and plastically shear dominated and the LCF met the design intent of 2.5% inter-story drift limits. For evaluating the LCF response, hybrid testing was performed for ground motion at three different intensities; 50%, 10% and 2% probability of exceedence in 50 years for Seattle, Washington ground motions. The system overall had exhibited three distinct performance levels; linearly elastic, rapid return to occupancy where only the replaceable links would yield, and collapse prevention where the gravity beam components also became damaged. Results demonstrated a viable lateral system under cyclic and seismic loading, offering a ductile structural system with the ability to rapidly return to occupancy.


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