Shaking table testing of a steel frame structure equipped with semi-active MR dampers: comparison of control algorithms

  • Caterino, N. (Department of Engineering, Universita degli Studi di Napoli Parthenope) ;
  • Spizzuoco, M. (Department of Structures for Engineering and Architecture, Universita degli Studi di Napoli Federico II) ;
  • Occhiuzzi, A. (Department of Engineering, Universita degli Studi di Napoli Parthenope)
  • Received : 2013.06.27
  • Accepted : 2014.02.16
  • Published : 2015.04.25


The effectiveness of the various control algorithms for semi-active structural control systems proposed in the literature is highly questionable when dealing with earthquake actions, which never reach a steady state. From this perspective, the paper summarizes the results of an experimental activity aimed to compare the effectiveness of four different semi-active control algorithms on a structural mock up representative of a class of structural systems particularly prone to seismic actions. The controlled structure is a near full scale 2-story steel frame, equipped with two semi-active bracing systems including two magnetorheological dampers designed and manufactured in Europe. A set of earthquake records has been applied at the base of the structure, by utilizing a shaking table facility. Experimental results are compared in terms of displacements, absolute accelerations and energy dissipation capability. A further analysis on the percentage incidence of undesired and/or unpredictable operations corresponding to each algorithm gives an insight on some factors affecting the reliability and, in turn, the real effectiveness of semi-active structural control systems.


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