New shake table can test earthquake effects on structures, soil

02/15/2012 | Tuscaloosa News (Ala.), The

A laboratory is being set up at the University of Alabama's South Engineering Research Center outfitted with a 32,000-pound shake table atop a 3-foot-deep concrete floor to simulate earthquake activity. The shake table is one of only 10 in U.S. laboratories. It may be the only one that not only evaluates quake effects on various structures, but also tests soil and other foundations on which structures are built. This hybrid testing will help determine whether building design codes are "conservative" or "too strong," said John van de Lindt of UA's civil construction and environmental engineering program.

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