Seismic Behavior of Building Frames Considering Dynamic Soil-Structure Interaction

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Journal Article
International Journal of Geomechanics, 2013, 13 (4), pp. 409 - 420
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The seismic excitation experienced by structures is a function of the earthquake source, travel path effects, local site effects, and soilstructure interaction (SSI) influences. The result of the first three of these factors is referred to as free-field ground motion. The structural response to free-field motion is influenced by the SSI. In particular, accelerations within structures are affected by the flexibility of the foundation support and variations between the foundation and free-field motions. Consequently, an accurate assessment of inertial forces and displacements in structures can require a rational treatment of SSI effects. In the current study, to depict these effects on the seismic response of moment-resisting building frames, a 10-story moment-resisting building frame resting on a shallow foundation was selected in conjunction with three soil types with shear-wave velocities of less than 600 m/s, representing Soil Classes Ce, De, and Ee according to an existing Australian Standard. The structural sections were designed after applying dynamic nonlinear time-history analysis, based on both the elastic method, and inelastic procedure using the elastic-perfectly plastic behavior of the structural elements. The frame sections were modeled and analyzed using the finite-difference method andthe FLAC 2D software under two different boundary conditions: (1) fixed-base (no SSI) and (2) considering the SSI. Fully nonlinear dynamic analysis under the influence of various earthquake records was conducted and the results of the two different cases for elastic and inelastic behavior of the structuralmodel were extracted, compared, and discussed. The results indicate that the performance level of themodel resting on Soil Class Ce does not change substantially and remains in the life safe level while the performance level of themodel resting on Soil Classes De and Ee substantially increase from the life safe level to near collapse for both elastic and inelastic cases. Thus, considering SSI effects in the elastic and inelastic seismic design of concrete moment-resisting building frames resting on Soil Classes De and Ee is essential. Generally, by decreasing the dynamic properties of the subsoil such as the shear-wave velocity and shear modulus, the base shear ratios decrease while interstory drifts of the moment-resisting building frames increase relatively. In brief, the conventional elastic and inelastic design procedure excluding the SSI is not adequate to guarantee structural safety for moment-resisting building frames resting on Soil Classes De and Ee.
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