These University of California, Los Angeles, structural engineers are using downtown Los Angeles as a testbed to broaden the design of earthquake-resistant buildings to earthquake-resilient communities. In this case, resilience means that in the event of a major earthquake, or even "the big one," tall buildings would better withstand the initial impact, and clusters of skyscrapers would be able to recover more quickly from any disruptions, such as water and power outages. The key is in the data and computer modeling. With support from the National Science Foundation, this team is creating new models that incorporate performance data not only from shake table tests, but from sensor networks in actual buildings. The models and new systems they're engineering are meant to guide safety inspections following earthquakes, helping engineers get to hotspots more quickly. The research tackles an important and challenging problem that will advance the ability to model and design tall buildings, considering the impact of their performance on urban resilience.
Provided by National Science Foundation