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Research Abstracts Online
January 2008 - March 2009

University of Minnesota Twin Cities
Institute of Technology
Department of Civil Engineering

PI: Taichiro Okazaki
Co-PI: Roberto Ballarini

Finite Element Simulation of Steel Structures

These researchers are using MSI resources for two projects. In both, they use the finite element (FE) analysis software ABAQUS to study the behavior of steel structures.

The first project is the investigation of the I-35W bridge collapse. Detailed nonlinear FE simulation has been conducted for this project. The objective is to reproduce the observed failure of critical components, and thereby, to establish recommendations for design and rehabilitation of steel truss bridges.

The second project is on the seismic performance of steel building structures. Large-scale specimens will be tested at the Multi-Axial Subassemblage Testing (MAST) facility operated by the Civil Engineering Department. The specimen will be a buckling-restrained braced frame (BRBF), which is a relatively new building system that is gaining popularity in the West Coast. Using the unique MAST system, the test will subject the specimen in bidirectional loading, in order to clarify behavioral aspects of BRBFs. In preparation of the tests planned for mid-to-late 2009, nonlinear behavior of the test specimen has been simulated by FE analysis.

Group Members

Minmao Liao, Graduate Student
Ramazan Ozcelik, Visiting Researcher
Keith Palmer, Graduate Student