Numerical modeling and analysis of RC frames subjected to multiple earthquakes

  • Abdelnaby, Adel E. (Department of Civil Engineering, University of Memphis) ;
  • Elnashai, Amr S. (Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign)
  • Received : 2014.06.16
  • Accepted : 2015.07.13
  • Published : 2015.11.25


Earthquakes occur as a cluster in many regions around the world where complex fault systems exist. The repeated shaking usually induces accumulative damage to affected structures. Damage accumulation in structural systems increases their level of degradation in stiffness and also reduces their strength. Many existing analytical tools of modeling RC structures lack the salient damage features that account for stiffness and strength degradation resulting from repeated earthquake loading. Therefore, these tools are inadequate to study the response of structures in regions prone to multiple earthquakes hazard. The objective of this paper is twofold: (a) develop a tool that contains appropriate damage features for the numerical analysis of RC structures subjected to more than one earthquake; and (b) conduct a parametric study that investigates the effects of multiple earthquakes on the response of RC moment resisting frame systems. For this purpose, macroscopic constitutive models of concrete and steel materials that contain the aforementioned damage features and are capable of accurately capturing materials degrading behavior, are selected and implemented into fiber-based finite element software. Furthermore, finite element models that utilize the implemented concrete and steel stress-strain hysteresis are developed. The models are then subjected to selected sets of earthquake sequences. The results presented in this study clearly indicate that the response of degrading structural systems is appreciably influenced by strong-motion sequences in a manner that cannot be predicted from simple analysis. It also confirms that the effects of multiple earthquakes on earthquake safety can be very considerable.


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