UC Berkeley News: New Bridge Earthquake Test

6/24/2010; 2 minutes

UC Berkeley engineers perform "shake tests" on a scale-model steel bridge to demonstrate a new bridge design that they say can better resist significant earthquake damage. The tests were conducted with ground motions equivalent to large quakes that have hit California, Chile, Japan and other parts of the world. The bridge segments are supported by seismic isolators and utilize a new Segmental Displacement Control Isolation System. The system is designed with lockup guides between bridge segments to constrain movement during a quake, allowing the roadway's center line to remain continuous. The strategy is meant to improve driver safety while minimizing damage to the bridge and the joints between the bridge segments. The research is being conducted by Pacific Earthquake Engineering Research Center (PEER), a consortium of nine universities on the West Coast, headquartered at UC Berkeley. (#19483)

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