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13th World Conference on Seismic Isolation,

Energy Dissipation and Active Vibration Control of Structures


- commemorating JSSI 20th Anniversary September 24-27 2013 Sendai Japan

Paper No. # 907768

Latest Developments in Seismic Isolation for Civil Structures in Armenia


Mikayel MELKUMYAN
Armenian Association for Earthquake Engineering,
Centre of New Construction Technologies at Armproject OJSC
1 Charents Street, 0025, Yerevan, Armenia
mmelkumi@yahoo.com

ABSTRACT
Currently, using the developed by the author of this paper seismic base and roof isolation
technologies, the number of already constructed and retrofitted buildings in Armenia has reached to 34. The
number of such buildings that are under construction is 6. The retrofitting designs for other 3 existing
buildings have been developed recently. Thus, the number of seismic isolated buildings per capita in
Armenia is one of the highest in the world. General information on application of seismic isolation
techniques for the last 20 years is given in the paper. However, this paper mainly describes new structural
concepts of earthquake retrofitting and protection designed for application in two existing buildings.
One of them is a four story stone college building. The created solution envisages gradual dismantling
in the basement of the thick interior bearing walls and construction instead of them of separate reinforced
concrete supports that include seismic isolators. The upper parts of these supports have cantilevers which
bear the weight of the interior longitudinal walls of superstructure.
The other is a twelve story office building with reinforced concrete bearing frames and shear walls.
The last floor of this building is an attic, the slab of which is envisaged to be separated from the columns
then lifted up and seismic isolators installed between them. By doing so the mentioned slab is converted into
an isolated upper slab which will be acting as a tuned mass damper thus protecting the building from strong
seismic events. Results of analyses of these two buildings by the Armenian Seismic Code and time histories
are also given in the paper.
Keywords: seismic isolation systems, base and roof isolation, retrofitting, earthquake protection,
existing buildings

1 INTRODUCTION
Seismic isolation in Armenia was initially (1994-2001) developed mainly through the projects
financed by international institutions (World Bank, UNIDO, Huntsman Corporation, Caritas
Switzerland). However, the advantages of seismic isolation were so obvious that in the subsequent
years great interest in application of this technology has been shown by private companies and the
government of Armenia. Therefore, further development of seismic isolation continued through the
projects financed by the governmental institutions such as Hayastan All-Armenian Fund, Program
for providing apartments for young families, private companies such as PCG International, LLC,
Elite Group, CJSC, Tufenkian Hospitality, LLC, ITARCO Construction, CJSC, as well as private
individuals who were constructing their own houses (Table 1).

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Table 1 - The Views of Some Retrofitted and Newly Constructed Buildings in Armenia Using
Seismic Isolation Systems.
a.

b.

e.

f.

i.

j.

m.

n.

c.

d.

g.

h.

k.

l.

o.

p.

a - 5-story existing stone apartment building retrofitted by base isolation for the first time in the world without
interruption of the use of the building [1,2],
b - 4-story base isolated apartment building with reinforced masonry bearing walls in Huntsman Village [3],
c - 3-story existing stone school building retrofitted by base isolation without interruption of the use of the building [4],
d - 3-story base isolated clinic building [5],
e - 3-story base isolated private house with stone bearing walls and dynamic damper at the level of isolation system [6],
f - 9-story existing roof isolated apartment building protected by means of an isolated upper floor [7],
g - 6-story base isolated hotel/commercial centre building [3],
h - 11-story base isolated building of the multifunctional residential complex Cascade [8],
i - 16- and 10-story base isolated buildings of the multifunctional residential complex Our Yard [9],
j - 16- and 14-story base isolated buildings of the multifunctional residential complex Arami [3],
k - 18-story base isolated buildings of the multifunctional residential complex Northern Ray [10],
l - 16- and 13-story base isolated buildings of the multifunctional residential complex Dzorap[3],
m - 20-story base isolated business centre Elite Plaza [3],
n - 17-story base isolated building of the multifunctional residential complex Baghramian [11],
o - 17-story base isolated building of the multifunctional residential complex Avan [3],
p - 15-story base isolated building of the multifunctional residential complex Sevak[3].
Buildings d, and from f to p have the structural system with R/C bearing frames and shear walls.

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As the rubber bearings are manufactured locally, seismic isolation techniques developed in
Armenia bring significant savings in construction costs, and at the same time they increase the
reliability of the newly constructed or retrofitted buildings. These facts attract the attention of
different institutions and private investors [12].
There are several reasons for the savings due to application of seismic isolation technologies.
One of them is that rubber bearings manufactured in Armenia cost significantly cheaper than
bearings manufactured elsewhere in the world. This is conditioned by the lower labor cost,
availability of rubber components in the country, as well as existence of several competing factories
capable of manufacturing high quality rubber bearings with low (LDRB, 5%), medium (MDRB, 810%) and high (HDRB, >10%) damping. Also, the provisions of the Armenian Seismic Code for
seismically isolated structures are much more progressive in comparison with, for example, the
USA Code in terms of analysis and design of superstructures of base isolated buildings. As a result
a huge amount of reinforcement could be reduced in superstructures of R/C base isolated buildings
designed in accordance with the Armenian Code. In addition, cross-sections of the bearing
structures (columns, beams, shear walls) are smaller, and there is no need to apply high strength
concrete for them. Therefore, large amounts of concrete and cement may also be saved in
superstructures.
Successful application of seismic isolation in the country is also conditioned by availability of
relevant legal and technical documentation, including: a chapter on Buildings and Structures with
Seismic Isolation Systems in the National Design Code for Earthquake Resistant Construction, the
Guidelines for Design and Construction of Buildings with Application of Laminated Rubber-Steel
Bearings, and the Standards (Specifications) on Manufacturing of Seismic Isolation Laminated
Rubber-Steel Bearings. All these documents were developed by the order of the Ministry of Urban
Development, adopted by the Government of Armenia and are in force since 2006.
Detailed statistics on buildings with application of seismic isolation technologies in Armenia
for the period of time from 1994 to 2010 is given in [13]. Statistics on buildings to be retrofitted or
newly constructed with application of seismic isolation technologies from 2011 to 2013 is given in
Table 2. The diagrams given in Figures 1 and 2 illustrate increase of the number of seismic isolated
buildings and corresponding number of rubber bearings manufactured and installed in Armenia by
years.
Table 2 - Statistics on Buildings to be Retrofitted or Newly Constructed in the City of Yerevan with
Application of Base Isolation from 2011 to 2013.
Name of building

Dimensions (m)
of buildings in plan
Number of stories
Years of design
Years of implementation
Newly constructed or
retrofitted
Number and type
of rubber bearings

Apartment building
with R/C bearing
frames and
shear walls
Avan

Apartment building
with R/C bearing
frames and
shear walls
Sevak

Business center State Pedagogical State Pedagogical


building with R/C existing college University building
bearing frames and
building with
with R/C bearing
shear walls
stone bearing
frames and
Erebuni
walls
shear walls

4028

3030

3833

3815

2522

15
2010
2011
Construction
almost completed

17
2011
2011
Construction
almost completed

13
2011 - 2012
2012
Under
construction

4
2012
2013
Under
retrofitting

5
2012
2013
Under
construction

247, MDRB

184, MDRB

184, HDRB

73, HDRB

47, HDRB

Seismic isolation systems may play a critical role in Armenia that is situated in high seismic
activity zone and is a country living through the transition period of its economic development with
acute housing problems. Hence, conventional earthquake resistance upgrading techniques applied
for existing buildings most probably are not acceptable in Armenia insofar as they require resettlement of residents, and, consequently, providing them with temporary shelters, that in turn
entails additional investments.
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Figure 1 - Number of Seismic (Base and Roof)


Isolated Buildings Newly Constructed or
Retrofitted in Armenia by Years

Figure 2 - Number of Rubber Bearings


Installed in the Newly Constructed or
Retrofitted Buildings in Armenia by Years

2 EXPERIMENTAL INVESTIGATION OF EFFICIENCY OF TUNED SINGLE AND


DOUBLE MASS DAMPER AND ITS APPLICATION IN THE FORM OF AN
ADDITIONAL UPPER FLOOR FOR SEISMIC PROTECTION OF EXISTING
MULTISTORY BUILDINGS
2.1 Theoretical Background: Linear and Non-Linear Analyses of a Building with and
without TMD
One of the main features of anti-seismic design of buildings is the possibility to control
inertial load values depending on the structural concept of the buildings. In the 1950s, when the
spectral theory of seismic stability was developed, the flexible ground floor was regarded as the
basic for reducing the seismic action level. However, the consequences of strong earthquakes such
as the 1963 Skopje, the 1988 Spitak or the 2008 Sichuan Earthquakes, etc. have shown that in this
case the bearing structures (mainly columns) of the ground floors were severely damaged and
further use of buildings was impossible despite upper floors preserved well. Therefore, continuing
efforts are made by researchers to find out the most efficient methods of seismic protection of
buildings and structures for their practical application. One of such methods is TMD, known as a
passive vibro-protecting device. TMD is basically a single-degree-of-freedom appendage of the
primary structure [14]. Dampers have been widely investigated in connection with seismic
protection problems [15, 16, 17, and 18].
The natural frequency of TMD (with the damping neglected) should be equal to the forced
vibration frequency of the structure to be protected, which as a rule is represented in a form of a
single-degree-of-freedom system. However, during earthquakes, forced vibrations are neither
harmonic, nor have a preset frequency and buildings are not single-degree-of-freedom systems. As
it is mentioned in [3], in spite of the chaotic nature of the ground motion, accelerations time
histories of linear oscillator are similar to harmonic vibration processes with the period equal to that
of linear oscillators. Therefore, if the first vibration mode is assumed to be the most significant one
during earthquakes, then the natural frequency of the damper should be equal to the first mode
frequency of structure vibration. When seismic loading is formed due to superposition of inertial
loadings of the first three oscillation modes, then three dampers should be used instead of one, with
natural vibration frequencies tuned correspondingly to frequencies of the first three modes of
buildings free vibrations.
Thus in the general case, the application of several dampers is expedient in terms of reducing
the seismic action level in buildings. However, it is technologically difficult to design and make
them in the traditional way, in the form of a mass properly fixed on the building. Particularly, even
one such damper (for the first vibration mode) in a 10-12 story building possesses considerable
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mass and its practical realization is impossible. Therefore, an additional upper floor for the building
has been proposed as a vibration damper [3].
As the mass of the upper floor would be approximately equal to the mass of other floors of
the building, this additional floor should exhibit a stiffness considerably smaller compared to that of
the other floors. Thus, a building with a flexible upper floor would be analogous to the one with
flexible ground floor. However, there is an essential difference between the two, since after seismic
event residual deformations in the flexible upper floor are not so disastrous for the building as a
whole. A flexible upper floor (TMD) could be erected on the existing buildings to increase their
seismic resistance, without requiring the tenants to leave the building. Also TMD could be widely
applied in new construction.
Determination of the damper parameters essentially depends on the seismic action nature. Let
us consider, as an example, a 9-story building with R/C bearing frames and shear walls protected
with the flexible upper 10th floor and assume that mr=m10, ar=a10, yr=y10 are the mass, stiffness and
displacement of the damper (the additional flexible upper 10th floor), k / is the coefficient of
viscous damping of the kth floor, and y0 (t ) is the ground acceleration (accelerogram). The values of
floors stiffness and mass of the investigated building are as follows: a1=a2==a9=897000kN/m;
m1=m2==m8=360

kN s 2
m

; m9=430

kN s 2
m

Using these data (at k=0), the periods of the first three vibration modes of the building in the
direction of shear walls without TMD were obtained: T1=0.778s, T2=0.261s, T3=0.159s. The values
of vibration periods of the first three modes for a building with TMD are given in Table 3, where
=mr/m1, d=ar/a1 [3].
Table 3 - The Values of the First Three Modes Vibration Periods (sec) of a 9-story Building at
Various Parameters of TMD (Additional Flexible Upper 10th Floor).

0.5

0.75

1.0

Tr
T1
T2
T3
T1
T2
T3
T1
T2
T3

d
0.005
1.304
0.755
0.261
1.580
0.761
0.261
1.830
0.760
0.260

0.0075
1.091
0.736
0.261
1.320
0.750
0.261
1.523
0.750
0.260

0.01
0.983
0.708
0.261
1.170
0.731
0.261
1.341
0.736
0.260

0.015
0.892
0.641
0.259
1.010
0.680
0.259
1.140
0.706
0.259

0.02
0.862
0.576
0.258
0.954
0.642
0.259
1.041
0.761
0.259

0.03
0.841
0.513
0.257
0.904
0.586
0.258
0.977
0.626
0.258

0.1
0.822
0.307
0.233
0.847
0.353
0.242
0.875
0.386
0.245

1.0
0.817
0.274
0.116
0.837
0.280
0.172
0.857
0.286
0.173

The building under consideration with TMD was analyzed using 12 accelerograms of strong
earthquakes with the purpose to obtain the minimal values of the base shear forces, to determine
corresponding optimal values of and d, and to compare the received results with those calculated
for the building without TMD. The results are listed in Table 4, showing that the additional flexible
upper floor - TMD - reduces the lateral forces by about 35% in average. Figure 3 presents, as an
example, the lateral forces at the ground floor level and displacements at the 9 th floor level for the
building analyzed by the 9.03.1949, H21 Hollister accelerogram. Seismic loads and lateral forces,
as well as displacements along the height of the building for both cases with and without TMD are
shown in Figure 4.
These results indicate that the efficiency of a single mass damper in the form of an additional
flexible upper floor tuned to the first mode of building vibration is not very high. Therefore, three
dampers tuned to the first three vibrations modes of the building are considered much more
effective. In this case, the seismic loads corresponding to each of the three modes will considerably
decrease leading to a significant reduction in total seismic loading. Based on these considerations, a
building structural solution with three TMDs has been proposed [19, 20].
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Table 4 - Optimal Parameters of TMD and Base Shear Forces of a 9-story Building
Analyzed by 12 Time Histories with and without Damper.
Earthquakes

Ferndale, USA 7.10.1951, 44W


Ferndale, USA 7.10.1951, 46E
Ferndale, USA 21.12.1954, 44W
Ferndale, USA 21.12.1954, 46E
Ulcinj-2, Yugoslavia 15.04.1979, N-S
Ulcinj-2, Yugoslavia 15.04.1979, N-E
Herceg Novi, Yugoslavia 15.04.1979, N-S
Herceg Novi, Yugoslavia 15.04.1979, N-E
Ferndale, USA 3.10.1941, H60
Hollister, USA 9.03.1949, H21
Eureka, USA 21.12.1954, H10
Taft, USA 12.01.1954, H70

Optimal parameters
determined for each time
history
d

0.50
0.0150
1.25
0.0334
0.50
0.0100
1.00
0.0075
1.00
0.0075
1.25
0.0334
1.00
0.0265
1.25
0.0334
0.75
0.0334
0.50
0.0100
0.50
0.0200
0.50
0.0120

Base shear forces (kN)


of the building
with damper
1600
2740
7380
8600
3900
7260
6200
5200
1318
2240
5620
1100

without damper
2680
4320
11220
12560
5180
11700
10080
7780
1856
3900
8400
2040

Figure 3 - Fragment of the 9.03.1949, H21 Hollister Accelerogram (a), Lateral Forces at
the Ground Floor (b) and Displacements at the 9th Floor (c) of the Building
without (Solid Line) and with (Dashed Line) the TMD
The mean values of the optimal parameters of TMD derived from Table 4 are the following:
=0.83 and d=0.02. Consequently, the mass of TMD in the given case is equal to about 9% of the
total mass of the 9-story building and the stiffness of TMD is about 50 times less than the stiffness
of the buildings typical floor. These investigations demonstrate to a certain extent the efficiency of
TMD represented by the additional upper 10th floor which has the steel columns (that provide the
needed stiffness to TMD) and the R/C slab (the mass of TMD) above them. On the one hand, its
construction does not require large expenses, and, on the other hand, it reduces the seismic loadings
and, consequently, lowers expenses for anti-seismic measures.
Three dampers tuned to the three natural frequencies of building vibrations seem more
efficient means for significantly increasing the earthquake resistance of structures. When analyzing
any building with TMDs, the number of vibration modes that should be taken into account is equal
to the number of TMDs, with addition of at least the next three modes [19, 20]. Thus, for the
buildings with three dampers at least six vibration modes should be encompassed in the analysis.
Figure 5 schematically illustrates the 9-story building with three TMDs, as well as six vibration
modes of the building. The multi-version analyses of such structure allowed to conclude that in this
case optimal stiffness and mass correlations of dampers could be found that enable significant
reduction of shear forces and displacements (for about 2 times) compared to the building without
TMDs.
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Figure 4 - Seismic Loads (a), Lateral Forces (b) and Displacements (c) of the 9-story Building
without (Solid Line) and with (Dashed Line) the TMD Analyzed by the 9.03.1949, H21 Hollister
Accelerogram

Figure 5 - Schematic of the 9-story Building with Three TMDs Tuned to its First Three Natural
Frequencies (a) and Six Vibration Modes Taken into Account (b) in the Analysis of the Building
It has to be noted that all of the above results are obtained by linear analyses of the building
with and without TMDs. However, non-linear analyses were also carried out, proving that
consideration of non-linearity for both the building and TMD structural elements significantly
increases the effectiveness of the TMD [3, 20]. The time history non-linear analysis of the 9-story
building with a TMD tuned to the first mode of vibrations was carried out using 7.12.1988, X
direction Spitak Earthquake accelerogram recorded in Ashotsk (former Goukassian) and scaled to
0.4g. Some graphical results of calculations are given in Figures 6 and 7, as an example.
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Figure 6 - Stages of Non-linear Deformation of the 9-story Building with a Single Mass
Damper Analyzed by 7.12.1988, X Direction Ashotsk Accelerogram
The Thin Solid Line Represents all Columns of the Building, the Thick Solid Line - All
Shear Walls and the Dashed line - All Non-structural Elements; c, y, x are the Cracking, Yielding
and Collapse stages, Respectively

Figure 7 - Floors Displacements (a), Drifts (b) and Restoring Forces (c) of the 9-story
Building with a Single Mass Damper Obtained by the Non-linear Analysis Using
7.12.1988, X Direction Ashotsk Accelerogram
It can be noticed that the steel columns of the TMD are always in the yielding stage due to the
large displacement developed by TMD, but the R/C columns and shear walls of the building are
mainly in the cracking stage, although yielding does occur in the shear walls of the lower four
floors. On these floors non-structural elements are in the collapse stage. Comparative analysis of the
same building without TMD shows that under the action of the same accelerogram the columns are
in the yielding stage, shear walls are in the ultimate stages of deformation, and non-structural
elements on all floors of the building are in the collapse stage [21]. Thus, the additional flexible
upper floor - TMD provides sufficient earthquake protection to the building under consideration.
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Reduction of lateral forces and displacements in the building with TMD takes place due to
increase of vibration period of the whole system (building plus the TMD) and decrease of the first
mode vibration coefficients (participation factors). However, a new type of second vibration mode
appears in the system; its participation factors are increasing significantly and together with the
factors of the first mode of vibration they even become greater than the first mode participation
factors of the building without TMD. This new type of second mode becomes prevailing, which
results in the TMD oscillations in anti-phase relative to the building along the whole duration of the
earthquake accelerogram [22, 23].
2.2 Experimental Investigation on Large-Scale Model of the Behaviour of Building Equipped
with Different Types of Tuned Mass Dampers
There are a rather large number of studies on theoretical investigation of behaviour of
buildings with tuned mass dampers under various impacts [16, 18, 24, and 25], However, the
experimental studies in this area are quite limited. In [3, 7, 19, and 23] the author of this paper has
described two works implemented through vibration tests on the 9-storey full-scale residential
buildings with R/C bearing frames and shear walls equipped with tuned mass dampers in the form
of flexible upper floor (FUF) and isolated upper floor (IUF) in Armenia.
This work to a certain extent fills the gap in experimental studies aimed at investigation of
behaviour of buildings with tuned mass dampers. The studies have been conducted on a model of
the same 9-storey frame building. The author designed and made the model of reinforced concrete
on a scale of 1:5 [20], using the principle of simple similarity developed in [26]. It had nine
columns forming two 120cm spans in mutually perpendicular directions, with axial dimensions of
240240cm. In one of the directions the spatial stiffness of the model was provided by three frames
with strong bearing beams (frame design), and in the other - by three frames with weak binding
beams and a single shear wall located in one of the spans in the plane of the middle frame (bracedframe design). The cross-sections of columns were 88cm, those of bearing beams - 810.4(h)cm
and binding beams - 85(h)cm. Floors consisted of prefab hollow-core model slabs with thickness
of 4.4cm, whereas the prefab panels of the shear wall were 2.8cm thick. In accordance with the
structural concept of these buildings, the shear wall panels were connected to columns by welding
the embedded items, and their connection to the beams was provided by casting concrete over the
dowels protruding from the shear wall prefab panels. The total height of the model was 5.9m, with
each storey being 0.6m high; foundation beams were 0.4m high and the column steel caps extended
beyond the 9th storey slab by 0.1m.
General view of the model before placement of tuned mass dampers is shown in Figure 8. As
seen, cast iron weights were suspended from the models slabs to provide vertical loads for creating
the necessary level of stress-strain state in the structural elements of the model. More detailed
information on the design, construction and testing of this model without tuned mass dampers can
be found in the other publications of the author and is not provided here for brevity.
Before placing the tuned mass dampers the model vibrations were induced in both directions
by laboratory vibration machines specially developed and made by the author for model tests. The
vibration machines were placed on the 9th storeys slab and rigidly connected to a steel frame,
which in turn was welded to the steel caps of all nine columns of the model (Fig. 9). The vibration
machines were mounted in such a manner that the exciting forces created during rotation of the
weights eccentrically placed on the vibrators shafts acted in the vertical planes passing in mutually
perpendicular directions through the middle axes (frames) of the model. The revolutions of the
vibration machines DC motors were continuously variable with the help of a special device, thus
providing harmonic vibrations in the range from 0 to 10Hz. The parameters of the forced vibrations
were measured by large displacement seismographs, as well as accelerographs placed at the level of
all floors along the central vertical axis of the model, with exception of the devices on the 9th floor,
where they were placed outside the central zone of the models plan, as it was occupied by the
vibration machines.
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a.

b.

Figure 8 - 9-storey Frame Building Model Designed and Constructed on a Scale of 1:5;
a - Front View, b - Side View

Figure 9 - Laboratory Vibration Machines for Testing Large Models Placed on the Slab of the
9th Storey (Before Mounting the Dampers) with a Steel Frame Rigidly Fixed to the Steel Caps
of the 9-storey Frame Building Model Columns
Vibration tests of the 9-storey full-scale frame buildings equipped with tuned mass dampers
in the form of FUF or IUF have been mentioned hereinabove. Those systems were single mass
dampers. Conversely, the investigation subject of this experimental work was tuned double mass
damper. Prior to mounting such damper as an additional tenth floor, the dynamic characteristics of
the model (periods and damping ratios) have been determined. The vibration machine was used to
induce forced resonant vibrations of 1st, 2nd and 3rd modes. The values of periods and damping
ratios calculated based on the records of these vibrations are indicated in Table 5.

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Table 5 - Periods of Oscillations and Damping Ratios of the 9-storey Frame Building Model at the
Stage of Elastic Behaviour under the first Three Modes of Resonant Vibrations Prior to Mounting
the Tuned Double Mass Damper.
Direction of the tests

For the 1st mode - 1

Along the frames with strong bearing


beams (frame design)
Along the frames with weak binding
beams (braced-frame design)

Periods of oscillations, sec


For the 2nd mode - 2 For the 3rd mode - 3

Damping
ratio , %

0.326

0.133

0.075

4.3

0.280

0.088

0.049

4.0

Experimental studies of the nine-storey frame building model with tuned double mass damper
were intended to carry out under its loading only in the direction of the frames with weak binding
beams and shear wall located in one of the spans in the plane of the middle frame. Given this
circumstance, one of the vibration machines was dismantled. In order to reach the cracking stage, in
the mentioned direction the model was subjected to several phases of dynamic loading with gradual
increase of the mass of the off-centre weights on the vibrator shafts. In these conditions the shear
wall panels suffered light damage in the form of inclined, intersecting thin cracks, whereas the
fundamental period of oscillations increased by 1.25 times compared to the initial one and equalled
to 0.35sec (1=2.86Hz). Almost no change of the damping ratio was observed (=4%), while the 9th
storeys floor displacement amplitude was =3.1cm.
The obtained values served a basis for choosing the mass and stiffness parameters of the first
damper, which was named as the main by the author. As it turned out, the necessary horizontal
stiffness of the mentioned additional tenth storey, i.e. the tuned mass damper, could be achieved by
using square iron posts with cross-section of 1414mm, welded to the sides of the steel caps of the
nine-storey frame building models columns. The stiffness of the model main damper ceiling could
be ensured by 45454mm L-shaped rolled steel profiles, whereas the mass could be accumulated
by R/C plates placed on these profiles (Fig. 10). Thus, the design of the main damper created on the
nine-storey model is similar to that of the FUF, the design of which has been developed by the
author of this paper, and later implemented and tested with his direct participation [19, 27].
The studies were aimed at determining the efficiency and damping properties of the tuned
double mass damper and comparing them to those of the single mass damper. The question of
optimal damping in the main damper was not dealt with. The main dampers tuning f21=f2MD21
(with no consideration of damping [28]) was performed immediately on the damper. Initially, the
main damper was tuned to the fMD frequency, very close to the resonance frequency 1 of the
models 1st mode oscillations. Afterwards, using incremental change of the dampers mass the
optimal tuning [29] was determined at which the maximum efficiency of damping was achieved. It
turned out that the optimal tuning requires the main dampers mass accumulation up to the value of
mMD=360kg, which is half of the models single storey weight (without kentledge) m storey=720kg.
Hence, given that total mass of the models nine storeys is M=7209=6480kg, then the relative
mass is =mMDM=3606480=0.056 (or 5.6%), and the tuning f21=1.0.
The approach that takes into account the damping in optimization of parameters for tuned
mass dampers differs from the case for dampers without damping, since optimal values of tuning
and relative viscous (or inelastic) resistance for a given value of are the ones to be determined.
Optimal values of tuning for hypotheses of viscous resistance or internal inelastic resistance are
determined in the same way [14, 28]. In our case the optimal tuning with consideration of damping
differs from the f21 value and is determined by the following formula:

f p2

1
1

0.95
1 1.056

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Figure 10 - Fragment of the 9-storey Models Upper Part with a View of the Additional 10th
storey, i.e. the Main Damper Together with Placed R/C Plates that Constitute its Mass
Once the main damper was tuned, it was subjected to dynamic loading with variable
frequency. Figure 11a shows fragments of vibration records obtained by seismographic
instrumentation at the slab of the models ninth storey and at the level of main dampers top. It was
derived from the obtained records that the maximum oscillation amplitude of the models upper part
with the main damper is 1.05cm, which is almost 3 times less [30, 31] as compared to the
oscillation amplitude of the models upper part without a damper (3.1cm). The maximum
oscillation amplitudes of the models upper part with the damper were approximately the same
before and after passing through resonance and corresponded to frequencies of 2.5Hz and 3.3Hz,
which are almost symmetrical in relation to the resonant frequency of the model without a damper
(2.86Hz). It has to be noted that before passing through resonance the damper acted in the same
phase with the model, whereas after passing through resonance it acted in anti-phase relative to the
model. The main damper oscillation amplitude was about 3-4 times larger than the amplitudes of
the models upper part oscillation. The free oscillations of the optimally tuned main damper have
also been recorded (Fig. 11b). The damping ratio of the main damper determined from this record
was =0.7%.
Upon completion of the model testing with the main damper, a second weight was added to
its ceiling and hence, the single mass damper was turned into a double mass one. The second mass
of the damper could be accumulated by weights placed in a 304010cm metallic box weighing
10kg.The metallic box was suspended from the main dampers ceiling by round steel rods with a
diameter of 8mm and length of 30cm. The general view of the second suspended mass is shown in
Figure 12. The tuning, or in other words, selection of the optimal value for the second mass was
performed in the same manner as the tuning of the main damper. At the optimal tuning the weight
for the second mass of the damper turned out to be 40kg, and the partial frequency of its normal
mode was 2.65Hz. The relative masses and tunings of the double mass damper were, respectively:

md 1 md 2 360 40

0.0617;
MM
9 720

f12 1.0; f 22 0.93; 2

12

md 2 40

0.11
md 1 360

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The total mass of the double mass damper turned to be 11% higher than that of the single
mass damper.

Figure 11 - Fragments of Vibration Records at the Top of the 9-storey Model with a Single Mass
Damper (1) and at the Level of the Dampers top (2) under Dynamic Loading Created by
Vibration machine (a), as well as of Single Mass Dampers Normal Mode Oscillations Record (b)

Figure 12 - Fragment of the 9-storey Models Upper Part with the View of the Second Mass
Created by Weights Placed in a Metallic Box and Suspended from the Main Damper
Over the course of tuning the created damper system, control records of model oscillations
with double mass damper were obtained, again under harmonic impact with variable frequency.
The records of these oscillations are provided in Figure 13. These records along with the ones
shown in Figure 11 were used to derive the amplitude-frequency characteristics of the model
(Fig. 14). The obtained results indicate that the tuned double mass damper is more efficient than the
single one, since the damping coefficient for the double mass damper reaches 4.4, which is 46.7%
higher than that of the single mass damper. Moreover, the range of the frequencies damped is about
50% wider. These results actually somewhat exceeded the expectations.
Comparing Figures 11 and 13 one may notice that the oscillation amplitudes of the main
damper have significantly decreased. Before adding the second mass the maximum amplitude of the
tuned single mass damper was around 3.5cm, whereas after adding the second mass it amounted to
13

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1.4cm. Normal mode oscillation records showed that its damping ratio is =1.75%, i.e. 2.5 larger as
compared to that of the single mass damper. Apparently, increased damping effect of the tuned
double mass damper is explained by mutual influence of the main damper and the second mass
suspended from it, whereby the energy of oscillations is re-distributed. Thus, it was found out that
under harmonic oscillations induced by a vibration machine the tuned double mass damper had a
higher efficiency than the single one.

Figure 13 - Fragments of Vibration Records at the Top of the 9-storey Model with a Double Mass
Damper (1) and at the Level of the Dampers Top (2) under Dynamic Loading Created by
Vibration Machine (a), as well as of Double Mass Dampers Normal Mode Oscillations Record (b)

Figure 14 - Amplitude-frequency Characteristics of the 9-storey Model: (1) without Damper;


(2) with the Single Mass Damper; and (3) with the Double Mass Damper

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Summarizing all of the above it can be stated that the conducted experimental studies confirm
the rather high efficiency of tuned mass dampers and that they are undoubtedly worth using to
increase the seismic resistance of buildings and structures [32, 33]. The question of using one or
another type of damper depending on the number of masses (single, double or multi-mass) or on
structural scheme (FUF or IUF, etc.) at the top of actual buildings is to be addressed considering
many factors. These may include the number of storeys, structural concept and technical condition
of the buildings, circumstances that limit the damper movement, necessity to utilize the space inside
the damper, cost effectiveness of the damper and many other factors.
2.3 Justification of Transition from the Concept of Flexible Upper Floor to the Concept of
Isolated Upper Floor
The TMD in the form of AFUF considered above was implemented on the R/C 9-story
building (Fig. 15). It can be seen that the AFUF represents a structure made of steel columns
supporting a thick R/C slab. This building was tested using a powerful vibration machine installed
on the slab of the 9th floor. Tests were carried out in two stages - before and after erection of AFUF.
Comparison of the results of tests with the analytical results has confirmed the fittingness of AFUF
for application in the existing building [19]. Nevertheless, it became obvious that such a structural
solution of AFUF contains some deficiencies from the practical point of view. In order to rigidly
connect steel columns to the structural elements of the building, these columns should have
sufficiently big cross-sections. But in this case the only way to provide the needed flexibility to the
AFUF is to increase the height of steel columns (more than 4m). However, this measure on one side
reduces the resistance of AFUF against wind and on the other side raises its gravity centre very high
above the existing building. Therefore, during strong ground motions the flexible upper floor,
though protecting the existing building, may itself suffer severe damages or even be destroyed
causing damages to the building. Another deficiency is that no exterior and interior walls shall be
constructed around and inside the space of the flexible floor as they will restrict its large horizontal
displacement. Because of that and the possibility of partial or total destruction of AFUF during
strong earthquakes it cannot be occupied and does not possess sufficient reliability. All the above
justifies the necessity to change the conceptual solution of this floor while keeping its idea. The
author of this paper has suggested providing flexibility to the damper using laminated rubber
bearings (LRBs) [3, 20]. Obviously, in such case the known AFUF will turn into an additional
isolated upper floor - AIUF (Fig. 16).

Figure 15 - General View of the 9story Building with the TMD-AFUF


Constructed Above It

Figure 16 - Change of the concept of the additional


upper floor from flexible to isolated

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Thus, the thin flexible columns are changed to seismic isolation LRBs and the slab,
representing the mass of the flexible floor, is also changed to a whole upper floor connected to the
existing building via LRBs. It is important to note that in the proposed solution the R/C slab of
AIUF is constructed right above the LRBs and comprises the largest portion of the damper (AIUF)
mass. Therefore, the gravity centre of the damper in this new structural solution is very close to the
existing building. Actually, AIUF itself above the isolation interface is a rigid structure, which
being supported by LRBs undergoes practically no deformations during the earthquakes.
Consequently, the suggested new concept of a TMD creation on top of the existing building allows
not only to increase its seismic resistance and reliability of the whole system, but also to enlarge its
useful space, which can be used for many different purposes.
2.4 Non-Linear Seismic Response Analysis and Dynamic Tests of the 9-Story Full-Scale
Existing Building before and after Erection of AIUF
The method of AIUF was used in earthquake protection design and implementation for two
existing R/C 9-story standard design buildings (Fig. 17). A special structure connecting the AIUF to
the building was developed (Fig. 18). At the level of upper truss belts R/C slab is designed. The
roof and the exterior walls of the AIUF were designed using light, sandwich type elements (Fig.
19). Free vibration periods of this type of buildings were determined by the author of this paper
based on the measurements of micro oscillations on a large number of undamaged buildings. The
following results were obtained: first mode vibration period in transverse direction (along the R/C
frames with weak beams and with shear walls) Ttrans=0.48sec in average, and in longitudinal
direction (along the R/C frames with strong beams) Tlong=0.59sec in average. Similar results for
undamaged buildings are indicated in [34].
The design model of the building is presented in Figure 20. Seismic response analysis was
carried out for the building with and without AIUF, using degrading tri-linear model for columns
and bilinear model for rubber bearings, as well as the Melkumyan model for shear walls [35], and
using 7.12.1988, X direction Spitak Earthquake accelerogram scaled to 0.4g.

Figure 17 - General Views of the Two Existing R/C


9-story Apartment Buildings Protected by AIUF

Figure 18 - Steel Rigid Trusses


Constructed on the Top of 9-story
Building and at the Bottom of AIUF
Providing Reliable Connection of
AIUF with the Building by LRBs

The main results of non-linear seismic response analysis are given in Figure 21 and Table 6.
The small scale of Figure 21 makes it hard to see and understand the behaviour of LRBs. Therefore,
the hysteresis loops for one LRB in a larger scale are presented in Figure 22. From the obtained
results it can be seen that the R/C columns and shear walls of the building protected with TND are
mainly in the cracking stage, although yielding does occur in the shear walls of the lower four
floors. Comparative analysis of the same building without TMD shows that under the action of the
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same accelerogram the columns are in the yielding and shear walls are in the ultimate stages of
deformation [3, 20]. Thus, the TMD in the form of AIUF also provides sufficient earthquake
protection to the building under consideration as the stress-strain state level in bearing structures
significantly decreases. The non-linear seismic response analysis proves that with AIUF acting as a
TMD seismic loads experienced by the building could be reduced along the height of the building
by about 2.5 times in average.

Figure 19 - The Inner Space of AIUF


at the Construction Completion Stage

Figure 20 - Design Model of 9-story Building


Protected by AIUF

It was also decided to conduct dynamic tests of these buildings in two stages: first without
AIUF, and then with it in resonance mode using unprecedented by its power vibration machine,
which provided excitation of inertial horizontal loads allowing imitation of the design level seismic
impact [23]. The testing was held in transverse direction in resonance regime on the first vibration
mode and it appeared necessary to make three stages of loading: the mass of eccentrics at the
vibrator shafts was equal to 1920kg at the 1st stage, 2880kg at the 2nd stage and 3840kg at the 3rd
stage. Accordingly, the first mode vibration period increased gradually, growing up to 0.96sec in
the 3rd stage. In the building test without AIUF the design intensity (VII by MSK-64 scale) impact
was exceeded for about 6%. This was necessary, but insufficient condition for continuation of the
experiment and permission of AIUF erection. It is needed to define how reliably the building would
withstand the design impacts. In the given case the period at the 3rd testing stage appeared to be
greater by 35% than the initial one, while the design load was exceeded for 6%. Along with that no
damage was observed in the bearing structures. This means the building is capable to withstand
reliably the design intensity VII impact [3, 23]. That is why a decision was made to continue testing
and permit erection of AIUF for upgrading the earthquake resistance of the building.
Before proceeding to the vibration testing of the building with AIUF it was necessary to
define its dynamic characteristics in order to tune the damper correctly. Its damping factor
comprised 7.5%. Testing of the building with AIUF again was held in resonance regime with
masses of eccentrics at the vibrator shafts equal to those at the 3rd stage of testing without the
AIUF, but in two vibration modes: AIUF and the building oscillate in the same phase (mode I/1),
and AIUF oscillates in the anti-phase to the building (mode I/2). Comparison of the obtained shear
forces at the ground floor level and displacements at the level of 9th floor slab have shown that in
testing the building with AIUF only in the I/1 vibration mode thanks to the AIUF shear force and
displacement are reduced by factors of 1.97 and 2.2, respectively. If the influence of I/2 vibration
mode is considered as well, shear force will decline by a factor of 1.76. At the same time the drift of
AIUF, or specifically the LRB displacement, exceeds the maximum drift of a story in the building
by a factor of 4.3. However, this does not prevent using the AIUF space for various purposes, since
its structures remain almost un-deformed. That is why AIUF compares favourably with AFUF.
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without AIUF

with AIUF

without AIUF

with AIUF

Figure 21 - Restoring force - floor drift relationships for each floor of the building without and
with AIUF
150

Horizontal force, kN

100

50

-50

-100

-150
-120

-80
-40
0
40
80
Horizontal displacement, mm

120

Figure 22 - Force-displacement relationship for a rubber bearing of AIUF

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Table 6 - The Values of Horizontal Seismic Lateral Forces and Stages of Deformation Obtained by
Non-linear Seismic Response Analysis of R/C 9-story Apartment Building with and without AIUF.
Story

3
4
5
Building without AIUF
Lateral seismic forces, kN
11601 11286 10589
9981
9548
Stages of
In columns
Y
Y
Y
Y
Y
deformation In shear walls
U
U
U
U
U
Building with AIUF
Lateral seismic forces, kN
8332
8199
7154
6603
5130
Stages of
In columns
C
C
C
C
C
deformation In shear walls
Y
Y
Y
Y
C
E - elastic, C - cracking, Y- yielding, and U - ultimate stages of deformation

AIUF

9241
Y
Y

8803
Y
U

7851
C
Y

4723
C
Y

4014
C
C

2927
C
C

1720
E
C

958
E
E

1315
E
-

3 NEW APPLICATION OF ROOF ISOLATION SYSTEM IN THE FORM OF AN


ISOLATED UPPER SLAB FOR SEISMIC PROTECTION OF AN EXISTING
12-STORY OFFICE BUILDING
3.1 Structural Concept of the 12-Story Office Building with R/C Bearing Frames and Shear
Walls Protected by an Isolated Upper Slab
The considered building has standard structural concept and buildings of this type had been
erected in all regions of Armenia. This building is constructed in 1989 on rocky area with the
inclination along its longitudinal direction of about 14.5 so that the first transverse frame of the
building has 12 floors and the last frame - 8 floors. The structural plan of this building has the main
dimensions of 3915m with the distances between the columns in transverse (short) direction equal
to 6-3-6m. In longitudinal direction the distance between the columns only in the first span is equal
to 3m and in the other six spans - to 6m. The spatial horizontal stiffness of the building in transverse
direction is provided by frames with strong beams and shear walls. In the other direction - by
moment resisting frames with strong beams along the exterior longitudinal axes, as well as by
frames with weak beams and shear walls along the interior longitudinal axes. Some shear walls
have door openings.
The design of these buildings incorporates precast R/C elements. Precast columns have the
height of three floors, whereas precast strong and weak beams are of one span. All column-tocolumn or beams-to-column joints are made by welding the longitudinal protruding rebars of the
precast elements. The precast shear walls panels are also welded to the frame elements. The slabs
are designed using precast R/C hollow core panels of different widths. All mentioned bearing
structures are made of grade 300 concrete. Foundations are designed in the form of R/C strip
footings. The 30cm thick exterior precast walls are made of grade 75 lightweight concrete. These
are not bearing walls and are just attached to the frames again by welding. Interior walls - partitions
with thickness of 6cm are also made of lightweight concrete small plates with dimensions of
4060cm.
The last floor of this building is an attic, the height of which is equal to 2.32m. It is envisaged
by the design to separate the slab of the attic from the columns then to lift it up and install the
seismic isolators between them. By doing so the mentioned slab is converted into an isolated upper
slab which will be acting as a tuned mass damper thus protecting the building from strong seismic
events. The proposed new solution of roof isolation system for an existing building with R/C
bearing frames is illustrated in Figure 23. Before starting the works on cutting of the existing
columns, their surfaces should be cleaned from plaster and thoroughly washed. This is needed to
ensure a good contact between the fresh concrete of the new R/C short walls, which will be
constructed around the existing columns, and the concrete surfaces of these columns. The new R/C
walls have the thickness of 160mm and height of 2.55m and will be constructed using reinforcing
steel bars with diameters from 8 to 12mm, which will be anchored in the body of the existing
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columns (Fig. 24). These walls will provide sufficient horizontal stiffness for the existing columns,
reliable interaction of the isolated upper slab with the building and transfer of forces from this slab
to the building. Then by specially developed technique the existing columns will be cut and using
the prepared in advance mechanism the slab above them will be gradually lifted on 1.35m
preserving its horizontality. Operations on cutting of the columns and lifting of the slab should be
performed in a special order stipulated in the design. Thus, the height of the attic under the isolated
upper slab will be increased significantly and this newly created space will become usable. This
was done following the order of the client. When all operations illustrated in Figure 23 are
accomplished the mechanisms used for the lifting of the slab could be removed and the slab will be
settled on rubber bearings.

Detail 2

Detail 1

Detail 1

Detail 1

3-3

Figure 23 - Sequence of Placing the Rubber Bearings in the Columns of Attic of the Existing
12-story Office Building with R/C Bearing Frames and Shear Walls
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1-1

Figure 24 - Plan and vertical elevation of the 12th floor with indication of the new R/C short walls
to be constructed around the existing columns
3.2 Results of Analysis of the 12-story Building Protected by an Isolated Upper Slab Based
on the Provisions of the Armenian Seismic Code and the Time Histories
Based on the results given above in Section 2.1 the factor was calculated. The total weight
of the building is equal to QB=89,000kN and the weight of the isolated upper slab is equal to
QIUS=5,600kN, which means that =0.063 (6.3%). In order to find the needed stiffness for the
isolated upper slab (actually the total stiffness of all the 32 rubber bearings to be installed in 32
columns of the 12th floor) the first mode micro vibrations periods of the building before starting any
construction works were measured on site. They were equal to Ttrans=0.550sec and Tlong=0.541sec.
It is well known that real vibrations periods of the buildings are bigger than their micro vibrations
periods by about 20% [36] and, therefore, for the considered existing building the vibrations period
in both directions was accepted equal to T=0.66sec. This is actually the value of the period to which
the system of the isolated upper slab should be tuned. Consequently, using this value the total
horizontal stiffness of all the 32 rubber bearings can be calculated:
Aht=(42QIUS)/(10T2IUS)=(43.1425600)/(100.662)50701kN/m.
Thus, the horizontal stiffness of one rubber bearing is equal to 1.58kN/m and this parameter
together with the magnitudes of vertical load on each rubber bearing and horizontal displacement
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were used for its design. Table 7 summarizes the design parameters and details of the laminated
rubber-steel bearings. The rubber shear strain at the design displacement is chosen to be 100%. The
simple recess connection detail for these bearings was chosen (see Fig. 23). Earthquake response
analysis of the considered building was carried out using SAP 2000 non-linear program. The design
model (Fig. 25) was developed using different types of finite elements for shear walls, floor slabs,
columns and beams, as well as for seismic isolators.
Table 7 - Design parameters and details of
laminated rubber-steel bearings to be used in the
system of the isolated upper slab.
Parameters and details of rubber bearings
Horizontal stiffness, kN/mm

Values
1.550.05

Vertical stiffness, kN/mm

400

Design horizontal displacement, mm

160

Max. static vertical load, kN

1000

Rubber shear modulus, MPa

0.970.1

Shore A hardness, points

705

Damping factor, %

151

Number of rubber layers

30

Thickness of rubber layers, mm

Number of internal metal plates

29

Thickness of internal metal plates, mm

2.5

Radius of internal plates, mm

180

Load for internal plate yield, kN

4800

Thickness of steel end-plates, mm

18

Radius of steel end-plates, mm

187

Thickness of side cover layer, mm

10

Thickness of end cover layer, mm

Overall height, mm

202.5

Overall diameter, mm

380

Figure 25 - Design Model of the 12-story


Office Building with R/C Bearing Frames
and Shear Walls Protected by an Isolated
Upper Slab

Nine time histories were selected for calculations and were scaled to 0.36g acceleration. Also
the building was analyzed based on the provisions of the Armenian Seismic Code. As it is
mentioned above the soil conditions of the site where the considered building is located are rocks
and in accordance with the Code they correspond to category I, for which the soil conditions
coefficient is k0=0.9 and the prevailing period of vibrations T00.3sec. The site is located in zone 3,
where the expected maximum acceleration is equal to 400cm/sec2. There are different allowable
damage coefficients stipulated in the Code. For this particular case of building with R/C bearing
frames and shear walls it is required to apply allowable damage coefficient (reduction factor) of
k1=0.4 for the building itself and k1=0.8 for seismic isolators and the structures below the isolation
plane within the 12th floor. Results of calculations regarding the periods of vibrations are given in
Table 8.
It follows from the obtained results that the vibrations periods of I/1 and I/2 modes of the
building protected by the isolated upper slab are almost symmetrical in relation to the periods of the
building without it. Indeed: (0.771+0.497)/2=0.630sec and (0.785+0.520)/2=0.653sec. The average
difference comprises about 3% and this means that the tuning of the system of the isolated upper
slab is done correctly. With no consideration of damping (see Section 2.2) the tuning in transverse
direction is equal to f2trans=2.29/2.32=0.98 and in longitudinal - f2long=2.29/2.24=1.02. With
consideration of damping the optimal tuning is determined by the following formula:
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f p2

1
1

0.94
1 1.063
.

Thus, the f2op differs from the f2trans, long values for about 6% in average. Figure 26 shows the I/1 and
I/2 modes of vibrations of the building protected by the isolated upper slab as well as the Ist
vibration mode of the building without it for the frame along the axis 5.
Table 8 - The Values of the Periods of Vibrations of the 12-story Office Building
without and with the Isolated Upper Slab.
Periods of vibrations, sec
Transverse direction
Longitudinal direction
Building without the isolated upper slab
0.656
0.668
Building protected with the isolated upper slab
0.771
0.785
0.497
0.520

Modes of vibrations

I
I/1
I/2

Transverse direction

-40

12

11

11

10

10

Stories

Stories

12

Longitudinal direction

40

80

120

-40

160

40

80

120

160

Displacement, mm

Displacement, mm

Figure 26 - Modes of Vibrations of the 12-story Office Building with R/C Bearing Frames and
Shear Walls Protected by the Isolated Upper Slab (the Red Line is the mode I/1, the Blue Line is
the mode I/2) and without the Isolated Upper Slab (the Black Line)
The horizontal displacements at the level of the buildings 11th floor slab calculated for cases
with and without isolated upper slab are shown in Figure 26. It can be stated that application of the
isolated upper slab brings to reduction of the displacement at the mentioned level by 1.39 times
based on the calculations using the provisions of the Armenian Seismic Code and by 2.88 times in
average based on the time history analyses. Other results of calculations are given in Table 9.

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Displacement, mm

60
40
20
0
-20
-40
0

12

16

20

Time, s

Figure 26 - Horizontal Displacements at the Level of the Buildings 11th Floor Slab Received
from the Analysis of Building by 7.12.1988 Spitak Earthquake, X Direction Ashotsk
Accelerogram, for Two Cases: with (the Red Thick Line) and without (the Blue Thin Line)
the Isolated Upper Slab
Table 9 - Some results of analysis of the 12-story Office Building with R/C Bearing Frames and
Shear Walls with and without the Isolated Upper Slab.
By the Armenian Seismic Code for the building:
with the isolated upper slab in the
without the isolated upper slab in the
direction:
direction:
transverse
longitudinal
transverse
longitudinal

Design parameters
Horizontal shear forces at the level of
foundation, kN
Displacements at the level of the 11th
floor slab, mm
Displacements at the level of the
isolated upper slab, mm
Inter-story drifts, mm
Horizontal shear forces at the level of
foundation, kN
Displacements at the level of the 11th
floor slab, mm
Displacements at the level of the
isolated upper slab, mm
Inter-story drifts, mm
Accelerations at the level of the 11th
floor slab, g
Accelerations at the level of the
isolated upper slab, g

20754

19184

30654

28084

47.87

42.81

65.91

59.97

117.38

104.86

7.14

6.94
9.41
Average by the time histories

8.89

19754

18541

45508

34764

28.81

31.60

86.52

86.86

25.97

28.43

4.23

4.50

12.45

12.18

0.52

0.53

0.85

0.89

0.45

0.47

From Table 9 it is clear that according to the Code based calculations horizontal shear forces
decrease by 1.47 times in average and according to the time history analyses - in average by 2.09
times. Correspondingly, inter-story drifts decrease in average by 1.30 times and 2.83 times. There is
a significant difference (by about 4.1 times in average) in the magnitudes of displacements at the
level of the isolated upper slab depending on the Code or time history analysis. It also can be stated
based on the time history analyses that application of the isolated upper slab brings to reduction of
accelerations at the level of the buildings 11th floor slab by 1.65 times in average. It should be
emphasised that accelerations at the level of the isolated upper slab are smaller (by about 1.14 times
in average) than accelerations at the level of the buildings 11th floor slab. This, as well as the
mentioned difference in displacements at the level of the isolated upper slab calculated by Code and
time histories, is most probably conditioned by the fact that the time history analyses are taking into
account the damping factor (25%) in the isolated upper floor system. In Table 7 the damping factor
for the designed laminated rubber-steel bearings is given as 15%. It is envisaged in the design to
add more 10% by installation next to every bearing a simple device (damper) presented by a steel
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rod connected with its upper end to the isolated upper slab. The lower end of this rod will be
moving in the cup filled up with the viscous material and fixed to the new R/C short walls.
4 NEW STRUCTURAL CONCEPT FOR AN EXISTING STONE COLLEGE BUILDING
TO BE RETROFITTED BY BASE ISOLATION
Isolation of structures from horizontal ground motions is gradually becoming a more common
method of providing protection from earthquake damage. By reducing the seismic forces
transmitted, isolation protects the contents and secondary structural features as well as the main
structure; the safety of occupants and bystanders is thus also enhanced. Moreover, it is practicable
to design the isolation system so that the structure responds elastically to the design level
earthquake. Thus, repair cost should be greatly reduced and continued serviceability of the structure
assured [37].
The rehabilitation of existing structures by the insertion of isolators at foundation level has
been carried out on historic buildings such as the Oakland City Hall, San Francisco City Hall [38,
39], Salt Lake City and County Building [40, 41]. For these, isolation may provide the only viable
means that is not unduly intrusive and damaging for the appearance of the building.
The retrofitting technique using base isolation has great potential also for rehabilitation of
ordinary civil structures such as apartment blocks and critical facilities such as schools, hospitals
[42]. The first retrofit of 1A-450 series existing stone apartment building has been carried out in
Armenia [43]. After this successful start other projects were developed and implemented and
among them the retrofitting of the 60 years old non-engineered existing stone school #4 building in
Armenia. The unique operations carried out to install seismic isolation bearings in this building
which has historical and architectural value are briefly described below [41]. Then the project on
retrofitting of an existing stone bank building initiated by Prof. Eisenberg and Dr. Smirnov that was
implemented in the city of Irkutsk, Russia. It was emphasized in their paper [44] that for retrofitting
the bank building by base isolation they have used the method developed in [43] by the author of
this paper, who also provided them with all the needed drawings, photos, video film related to the
retrofitting works carried out in Armenia. Together with the retrofitting by base isolation of various
stone buildings retrofitting technology using seismic isolation rubber bearings was developed also
for the existing reinforced concrete (R/C) frame building of the Armenian-American Wellness
Center (AAWC) [7, 42]. Finally, experience accumulated in Armenia in retrofitting of existing
buildings including those of historical and architectural value created a good basis for participation
in the international competition announced by the Government of Romania for development of the
design on retrofitting at least 179 years old historical building of the Iasi City Hall by base isolation.
The structural concept, including the new approach on installation of seismic isolation rubber
bearings was developed by the author of this paper and the design of retrofitting the Iasi City Hall
building was accomplished in cooperation with the Romanian company MIHUL S.R.L. [45]. The
design was finally approved by the Technical Committee for Seismic Rick Reduction (a body
especially created by the Government of Romania) on June 1, 2009.
High damping rubber bearings (HDRBs) are a simple, economical means of providing
isolation. They have the low horizontal stiffness required to provide a long vibration period
(typically 2sec) to a structure mounted on such bearings. Their vertical stiffness is high, which
minimizes rocking of the structure during an earthquake. The damping needed to limit the
displacement of the structure and reduce the response at the isolation frequency is incorporated into
the rubber compound, and so generally no auxiliary dissipation devices are needed. The bearings
can be designed to withstand safely the large horizontal displacements imposed on them during an
earthquake. The service life of the bearings is expected to be several decades [46], and they should
require no maintenance.
Many projects throughout the world have installed seismic isolation systems based on
HDRBs [47]. During the Northridge earthquake in California (January 17, 1994) [48] and the
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earthquake which struck the Kobe region of Japan (January 17, 1995) seismically-isolated buildings
performed well. For instance, a three-story laboratory building owned by Matsumuri-Gumi
Corporation and mounted on high damping rubber bearings was subjected to peak ground
acceleration (NS direction) of 272 gal during the Kobe earthquake. Immediately above the isolators
the peak acceleration in the structure was only 148 gal, and at the roof 198 gal. The corresponding
acceleration at the roof of an adjacent three-story, fixed-base office block was 965 gal, almost five
times higher [37].
4.1 Retrofitting of an Existing Five-Story Stone Apartment Building
Series 1A-450 standard design apartment buildings (Fig. 27a) have been erected in all regions
of Armenia. They have plan dimensions 5215m, and their 45-50cm thick bearing walls located
mainly in transverse direction are symmetrical relative to the centre of the long side. The horizontal
stiffness in the longitudinal direction is ensured partly by R/C frames with strong beams and
columns, made inside the body of walls, as well as by longitudinal walls at the edge parts of the
buildings. The analysis of the December 7, 1988 Spitak earthquake consequences has shown that
the most vulnerable zones in these buildings are the edge parts, where the direction of bearing walls
had been changed by the designers. Due to the weak connections between longitudinal and
transverse walls, intensive plastic deformations had occurred in these very zones resulting in failure
of the buildings.
The developed structural concept aims at retrofitting an existing building using a simple
working technology [43]. This is a unique and pioneering seismic isolation project implemented for
an existing 5-story stone building. The idea is to furnish this building with seismic isolation by
gradually cutting the isolators into the walls at the level of foundation upper edge by means of a
two-stage system of R/C beams (Fig. 27b).
a.

b.

Figure 27 - General View of the Existing 5-story Stone Apartment Building Retrofitted by Base
Isolation (a), Fragments of its Isolation System and Geometrical Dimensions of Isolators (b)
Base isolation method for existing buildings with bearing walls that involves placing seismic
isolators at the level of the foundation or the basement solves the problem in the following manner
(Fig. 28). According to the innovative technology developed by the author of this paper (Patent of
the Republic of Armenia #579), openings with certain spacing are made in the basement bearing
walls to accommodate lower reinforcement frames with seismic isolator sockets. Binding
reinforcement lower frames are passed along both sides of the bearing walls through reinforcement
frames. Then the latter are concreted to form lower pedestals. The next step is to place seismic
isolators in the lower sockets. Upper sockets and upper reinforcement frames are placed on the
isolators passing along both sides of the bearing walls upper binding reinforcement frames, through
the upper reinforcement frames. Then the latter are concreted to form the upper pedestals. When
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concreting the frames, ends of the binding reinforcement frames and are left free beneath and above
the seismic isolators. In the parts of walls between the seismic isolators, openings are made and
short binding reinforcement frames and are placed through them. The latter tie additional
reinforcement frames and of the adjacent seismic isolators. Then the parts between pedestals are
concreted thus forming lower and upper continuous beams along all bearing walls of the building.
The parts of the existing walls, which at this point still remain between seismic isolators, are
removed creating gaps and the building is hence separated from its foundation, being linked to it
only by the seismic isolators.

Figure 28 - 3D Views of the Seismic Isolation System Installation Stages in the Existing Building
with Stone Bearing Walls
It is very important that two adjacent openings in the walls are not made simultaneously; parts
of walls existing between seismic isolators should be cut off beginning from the middle of the
building plan. From the above it is obvious that the isolators are located by upper and lower
recesses provided by annular steel rings bolted to outer steel plates which are connected to the
reinforcement in the upper continuous and lower foundation beams; the isolators themselves are not
bolted to the structure. This method of connection helps to minimize the cost of the isolators
themselves and simplifies their installation on site [47]. Because the bearing is simply located in a
recess, no tapped holes for bolted connections are needed in the end-plate. The side, top and bottom
rubber cover layers ensure the steel plates are protected from corrosion. The above described
operation was accomplished without re-settlement of the dwellers. There has been no similar
precedent in the world practice of retrofitting apartment buildings. The project was implemented in
1995-1996, financed by the World Bank and co-financed by UNIDO [1].

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4.2 Retrofitting of an Existing Three-Story Stone School Building


The project on retrofitting the school #4 building by base isolation was initiated in Armenia
by Caritas Switzerland in 2001. The following advantages were taken into account: high reliability,
lower cost and reduced duration of construction in comparison with conventional retrofitting, as
well as preservation of the architectural appearance of the building. The unique operations carried
out to install seismic isolation bearings in this building are briefly described below. The school is a
3-story, over 60 years old building with thick bearing walls made of tuff stones. Actually, this
building is a non-engineered structure with wooden floors. It was planned to replace the wooden
floors by the R/C slabs.
The school building (Fig. 29) is mainly U-shaped in plan and has load-bearing walls located
in transverse and longitudinal directions. The thickness of bearing walls varies from 600mm to
1150mm in the basement and from 600mm to 700mm in the floors above the ground. There is a
school sports hall with the height equal to the height of the basement plus the height of the first
floor. This, along with the U-shape plan, causes significant asymmetry to the building in
longitudinal direction. Actually the plan of the building in the limits of the basement and the first
floor is almost rectangular, while the plans of the second and third floors are U-shaped.
a.

b.

Figure 29 - General View of the 3-story School Building Retrofitted by Base Isolation (a) and a
Two-stage System of R/C Continuous Beams, which Separate the Building from its Foundation
and Create the Seismic Isolation System (b)
The school building had survived the 1988 Spitak Earthquake and fortunately the effect of
this earthquake on the building was not very damaging. The building suffered inclined cracks
mainly in the walls located around the staircases. Therefore, it was decided to strengthen parts of
the existing damaged walls by cement injection and/or by reinforced concrete jackets. These
operations were performed simultaneously with installation of the base isolation system at the level
of the school basement in the middle part along the height of its walls [4]. This approach implied
some differences in retrofitting of the school building in comparison with that of the apartment
building. In the case of the school building the lower continuous beams were structurally connected
to the bearing walls of the basement. This afforded a possibility to strengthen the bearing walls by
lower continuous beams before cutting the building and passing its weight through the seismic
isolators to the bearing walls of the basement. Such structural solution permits the bearing walls of
the basement to reliably carry the concentrated vertical loads and does not worsen their behaviour
and stress-strain state compared to other known solutions mentioned above [40].
For the given project the medium damping rubber bearings (MDRBs) from neoprene have
been designed by the author of this paper. As for the above described apartment building an
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isolation frequency of 0.5Hz was chosen again. For the design level earthquake and damping of 89% in the isolation system, the calculated horizontal displacement was equal to 140mm. The
maximal horizontal displacement was equal to 210mm. Geometrical dimensions are the same as
given in Figure 27. Other main parameters of the designed MDRBs are as follows: horizontal
stiffness - 0.810.1kN/mm; vertical stiffness - 300kN/mm; rubber shear modulus - 0.970.15MPa;
critical vertical load - 4500kN; vertical load at maximum horizontal displacement - 1500kN.
Upper and lower recesses were used to place the isolators in this school building as well;
however, the annular steel rings in this case were bolted directly to the anchors. The outer steel
plates were also modified and instead of the 20mm thick plates, 6mm plates were proposed (Fig.
30). These modifications in the design of the isolators sockets have brought to significant reduction
of steel consumption. Figure 30 also shows the cross-sections of the basement bearing wall in the
place where isolator is installed between the lower and upper pedestals and where there is no
isolator, but the lower and upper continuous beams are seen from both sides of the bearing wall.
The technique of installing seismic isolators is especially important for the considered
building, which has a historical and architectural value. First, the buildings external appearance
should not be disfigured under any circumstances. Second, not a single stone of the faade should
fall down when making openings in the bearing walls. One may have to deal with three different
situations in making openings in the existing walls of the basement, which were mainly used in
retrofitting of the mentioned building [41]. The relatively simple case is when the opening has the
part of existing wall above it (Fig. 31). In this case there is no need to put any additional supports,
as the strength of the wall is sufficient to avoid collapse. When the opening is made, the lower
reinforcement frame of the lower pedestal with the isolator socket can be placed and after that
binding reinforcement lower frames are passed along both sides of bearing wall through the frame
of the lower pedestal (Fig. 32).
1-1

2-2

upper continuous beam connected to the superstructure

Upper
pedestal

Upper
continuous
beam

Lower
pedestal

Lower
continuous
beam

lower continuous beam connected to the bearing walls of the basement

Figure 30 - Location of MDRBs by Upper and Lower Recesses Provided by Annular Steel Rings
Bolted to the Anchors Connected to the Upper and Lower Continuous Beams
in the School Building
In the next step the concrete of the lower pedestal is cast, the isolator is installed (Fig. 33a)
and above it the upper socket and the reinforcement frame of the upper pedestal are placed. Then
the binding reinforcement upper frames are passed through the reinforcement frame of the upper
pedestal along both sides of the existing bearing wall (Fig. 33b). After casting the concrete of the
upper pedestal all lower and upper pedestals should be connected to each other forming a two-stage
system of R/C continuous beams (Fig. 29b).
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Figure 31 - Retrofitting of
Figure 32 - The Views of the Lower Reinforcement Frames of
Existing Stone School Building:
the Lower Pedestal Installed in the Opening Together with
the Case when the Opening Has
the Isolator Socket
Part of the Existing Wall Above It
A more complicated situation for making openings arises when any of the existing beams or
girders is crossing the space of the opening. In this case one of the ends of the existing beam loses
its support (Fig. 34) and it is necessary to create temporary supports in order to carry the dead load
of the existing building. The operation should be performed very carefully in order to avoid any
damages in the superstructure after making openings in the existing walls. It is important to carry
out all operations described above as quickly as possible. Therefore, for such cases everything
should be prepared in advance and after casting the concrete, the temporary supports should be
taken out only when concrete gets about 70% of its strength. Sometimes it is necessary to install
temporary supports inside the opening in the plane of existing walls. In this case the supports
should be made of steel, as after casting the concrete they will remain in the lower and upper
pedestals. Later the parts of such supports between pedestals should be cut away.
a.

b.

Figure 33 - The View of the Isolator Installed in the Socket


After Casting the Concrete of the Lower Pedestal (a), and the
Upper Reinforcement Frame Installed in the Opening Together
with the Upper Socket and with the Binding Reinforcement
Upper Frames (b)

Figure 34 - Existing Beam


Crosses the Space of the
Opening and is Supported
by Temporary Columns

The most complicated case is when the opening does not have any part of the existing wall
above it. For the subject matter school building such situations occurred at the entrance, where
openings had to be made just beneath the columns and the arches. The arches had to be temporarily
supported before starting to make the openings (Fig. 35a). Then the opening under the column
should have been gradually made. With this purpose, at the beginning the part of the foundation
only under one quarter of the column section had to be taken out (Fig. 35b). This allowed installing
a mechanical jack under the column. After that the other part of foundation under another quarter of
the column section could be demolished. When this work has been finished, a temporary support
under the one half of the column section should be installed and the mechanical jack could be taken
out (Fig. 36a). Then again, the foundation under the other half of the column section should be
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gradually demolished and this part of the column section also should be temporarily supported. In
cases like this the reinforcement frames of the lower and upper pedestals cannot be prepared in
advance and should be made in situ (Fig. 36b).
a.

b.

a.

Figure 35 - Temporary Support under


the Existing Arches (a) and the Carved
out Part of the Foundation under the
One Quarter of the Column Section (b)

b.

Figure 36 - Temporary Support under the One Half of


the Existing Column Section (a), and the Temporarily
Supported Existing Column and the Wall Behind It
with the Reinforcement Frame of the
Upper Pedestal Installed (b)

The subsequent operations are similar to those described above in Section 4.1. However,
during every step of implementation in such complicated cases of retrofitting it is necessary to take
care of the condition of the existing structures to prevent development of any damages, as these
structures are part of the valuable architectural appearance of the building.
4.3 Base Isolation Retrofitting Design of an Existing Four-Story Stone College Building
Retrofitting design of the College building was developed in accordance with the contract
between the Armenian State Pedagogical University (Client) and the Armproject OJSC (Design
Institution) in 2012. The new structural concept of retrofitting, including the approach on
installation of seismic isolation rubber bearings by clusters and results of the earthquake response
analysis are described below. The above mentioned advantages of retrofitting by base isolation, as
well as the necessity of preservation of the architectural appearance of the building, constructed in
1950, were taken into account by the Client who agreed with the proposal of the author of this
paper to implement the innovative technology.
The College is a 4-story building (Fig. 37) with thick bearing walls also made of tuff stones.
The thickness of bearing walls varies from 850mm to 1100mm in the basement and from 550mm to
650mm in the floors above the ground. The building has rectangular plan with dimensions of
37.414.2m and has two exterior and two interior longitudinal load-bearing walls and the same
number of exterior and interior transverse load-bearing walls. As the above described school
building this one is also a non-engineered structure with wooden floors and according to the
developed design it is envisaged to replace the wooden floors by the R/C slabs.
For implementation of isolation system along all exterior and two interior transverse walls the
same method of retrofitting by base isolation (as described for the above mentioned apartment and
school buildings) was used. But for the interior longitudinal walls new structural solution was
developed by the author of this paper. The matter is that in the basement floor, according to the
architectural solutions, large spaces were needed. This was impossible to get because of availability
of the interior thick walls.

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a.

b.

Figure 37 - General View of the 4-story College Building to be Retrofitted by Base Isolation (a)
and its Design View (b)
The created structural solution envisages gradual dismantling of the interior longitudinal loadbearing walls in the basement and construction instead of them separate R/C supports that include
seismic isolators. The upper parts of these supports have cantilevers which bear the weight of the
interior longitudinal walls of superstructure. Figure 38 shows the design plan of location of seismic
isolators as well as longitudinal and transverse vertical elevations of the isolated buildings
basement. From Figure 38 it can be seen that the newly created supports are located in longitudinal
direction of the building between the axes B and C along which previously there were the interior
thick longitudinal load-bearing walls. Construction of these new supports in parallel with the
gradual dismantling of the interior longitudinal load-bearing walls in the basement is designed by
stages in the following way.
At the Stage I (Fig. 39) in the existing longitudinal load-bearing walls, in the places where
supports C are going to be constructed, openings of 1.0 m width are made and temporary wooden
or steel supports in these openings are installed to carry the weight of the part of the basement slab.
At this stage the supports A, B, C, D and E actually do not exist and just for marking
them these supports are shown in dashed line. At the next Stage II the previously made openings are
widened to the left and right by 0.6m so that their total width equals to 2.2m. After that the lower
and the upper parts of the supports C could be constructed with simultaneous installation of the
seismic isolation rubber bearings between them. When strength of the concrete of these supports
reaches its design value the temporary wooden or steel supports could be removed. Generally
speaking, special attention should be given to the installation and fixation of the temporary wooden
or steel supports in order to avoid any damages in the superstructure after making openings in the
existing walls. Then, at the Stage III in the places where supports A are going to be constructed,
the same operations are made as for the Stage I with the only difference that the total width of the
openings here equals to 1.8 m because the dimensions in plan of the supports A, B, D, and
E are equal to 1.41.0m but of the supports C - 1.41.4m. After construction of the supports
A it is envisaged by the design, using the same approach, to build supports E then supports B
and finally supports D. All together there are twelve stages developed in the design for
construction of five new R/C supports between the axes 1 and 2, as well as other five new R/C
supports between the axes 5 and 6. Actually for brevity Figure 39 shows only Stages I and II and
then XI and XII. The last two show the stage when supports D are constructed and the final stage
when all the remaining parts of existing walls are dismantled.
For the given project the high damping rubber bearings (HDRBs) from neoprene have been
designed. However, main parameters of the designed HDRBs are the same as for the school
building and geometrical dimensions are the same as given above in Figure 27. Earthquake
response analysis of the building was carried out by SAP2000 non-linear program. The design
model (Fig. 40) was developed using different types of finite elements for walls, floor slabs and
seismic isolators. For the design level earthquake of PGA=0.52g and damping of 13-15% in the
isolation system, the calculated periods of vibrations in longitudinal and transverse directions were
the same and equal to 1.9sec.
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1-1

2-2

Figure 38 - Design Plan of Location of Seismic Isolators at the Level of the Existing Basement
Highlighting the Lower Pedestals under the Isolators and the Lower Continuous Beams Along the
Whole Perimeter of the Bearing Walls;
Longitudinal 1-1and Transverse 2-2 Vertical Elevations of the Isolated Buildings Basement

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temporary
support

temporary
support

temporary
support

temporary
support

Figure 39 - Stages of Construction of New R/C Supports in Parallel with the Gradual
Dismantling in the Basement of the Interior Longitudinal Load-bearing Walls

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temporary
support

temporary
support

Figure 39 - Stages of Construction of New R/C Supports in Parallel with the Gradual
Dismantling in the Basement of the Interior Longitudinal Load-bearing Walls (continued)

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The analysis was carried out by 8 selected accelerograms recorded in Armenia (7.12.88
Spitak, EW and NS directions), Iran (20.06.90 Manjil, NE direction), Japan (17.12.87 Chiba, NS
direction), USA (09.03.49 Hollister, 20.12.54 Eureka, NE direction and 17.10.89 Loma Prieta), and
former Yugoslavia (15.04.79 Bar, EW direction). All records were scaled to acceleration of 0.52g.
Some results of analysis of the base isolated College building by the Armenian Seismic Code and
the average results by the time histories are given below in the Table 10.
Table 10 - Some results of analyses of the base isolated College building.
Design parameters
Horizontal shear forces at
the level of foundation, kN
Displacements
of the isolation system, mm
Inter-story drifts, mm

By the Armenian Seismic Code


in longitudinal direction in transverse direction

Average by the time histories


in longitudinal direction in transverse direction

11103

11103

8239

9904

188

188

124

125

1.1

3.1

0.7

1.9

Acceleration, mm/s 2

Floor accelerations along the height of superstructure in both directions are the same. As an
example, Figure 40 illustrates the reduction of input acceleration in the superstructure of the base
isolated College building both in transverse and longitudinal directions under the impact of the
7.12.1988 Spitak Earthquake acceleration time history, X direction recorded at Ashotsk station.
From this particular example it follows that accelerations along the height of superstructure equal to
0.18g, meaning that thanks to application of base isolation the input PGA of 0.52g decreases by
about 2.9 times. Also it was obtained that in none of the isolators the vertical force exceeds
1500kN; superstructure is moving in horizontal direction as an absolutely rigid body without any
overturning and together with the above results this underlines the high effectiveness of the created
base isolation system. It should be mentioned that for small deformations corresponding to the wind
impact, the initial stiffness of rubber bearings is much higher than their effective stiffness and, thus,
the ability of the system to provide an intrinsic restraint against wind loading is confirmed.
Structural elements above and below the isolation interface work only in the elastic stage.
Amax=0.18g

6000
3000
0
-3000
-6000
0

10

12

14

16

18

10

12

14

16

18

Acceleration, mm/s 2

Time, s

Amax=0.18g

6000
3000
0
-3000
-6000
0

Acceleration, mm/s 2

Time, s

Amax=0.52g

6000
3000
0
-3000
-6000
0

10

12

14

16

18

Time, s

Figure 40 - Design Model of the Base Isolated College Building and Comparison of the Response
Accelerations at the Levels of the Top of Isolators and the Top of the Building by the Analyses in
Longitudinal and in Transverse Directions Using the 7.12.1988 Spitak Earthquake Accelerogram

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5 CONCLUSIONS
The conducted experimental studies confirm the rather high efficiency of tuned mass dampers
and that they are undoubtedly worth using to increase the seismic resistance of buildings and
structures. Tuned mass dampers as additional upper floors in the form of AFUF or AIUF are
suggested and presented. The efficiency of a single mass damper tuned to the first mode of building
vibration is not very high. Three dampers tuned to the first three vibrations modes of the building
are considered much more effective as in this case optimal stiffness and mass correlations of
dampers could be found that enable significant reduction of shear forces and displacements (for
about 2 times) compared to the building without TMD.
Deficiencies of AFUF are described and, thus, providing flexibility to the damper using LRBs
is suggested. Transition from the concept of AFUF to the concept of AIUF is justified. The nonlinear seismic response analysis proves that with AIUF, acting as a TMD, seismic loads (the strainstressed state level) experienced by the building could be reduced along the height of the building
by about 2.5 times in average. Dynamic testing of the existing 9-story building before and after
erection of AIUF allows to conclude that the proposed AIUF method leads to upgrading earthquake
resistance of buildings and that AIUF brings to reduction of shear force at the ground floor level by
a factor of 1.76 and at the same time the displacement at the 9th floor slab level decreases 2.2 times.
Based on the efficiently implemented concept of AIUF the new application of roof isolation
system in the form of an isolated upper slab for seismic protection of an existing 12-story office
building is proposed. By the developed structural solution it is suggested to separate the slab of the
attic floor from the columns then to lift it up and install the seismic isolators between them, thus
converting the mentioned slab into an isolated upper slab acting as a tuned single mass damper.
Application of the isolated upper slab brings to reduction of the displacement at the level of
the buildings 11th floor slab by 1.39 times based on the calculations using the provisions of the
Armenian Seismic Code and by 2.88 times in average based on the time history analyses.
Correspondingly, inter-story drifts decrease in average by 1.30 times and 2.83 times and horizontal
shear forces decrease in average by 1.47 times and 2.09 times. It also can be stated based on the
time history analyses that application of the isolated upper slab brings to reduction of accelerations
at the level of the buildings 11th floor slab by 1.65 times in average. These results confirm that
being properly tuned the isolated upper slab is an effective tool for protecting the buildings from
strong seismic events.
Two remarkable projects on retrofitting by base isolation are briefly described in the paper.
One of them is retrofitting of a stone apartment building. 3D views of the seismic isolation system
installation stages in the existing building with stone bearing walls are given to illustrate the
developed technology of retrofitting. The operation was made without resettlements of the
occupants. World practice provides no similar precedent in retrofitting of apartment buildings. The
other project is retrofitting of the 60 years old non-engineered 3-story stone school building, which
has historical meaning, and also has a great architectural value. Unique operations which were
carried out in order to install the isolation system within the basement of this building and to
preserve its architectural appearance are also briefly described.
The accumulated experience on retrofitting of the stone buildings by base isolation was used
for development of retrofitting design of the existing 4-story (plus a basement) stone college
building which is also non-engineered structure constructed about 65 years ago. Paper describes in
detail the new structural concept of retrofitting by base isolation developed by the author. Together
with replacement of the existing wooden slabs by the R/C slabs the created structural solution
envisages gradual dismantling in the basement of the interior longitudinal bearing walls and
construction instead of them a separate R/C supports that include seismic isolators. The upper parts
of these supports have cantilevers which bear the weight of the interior longitudinal walls of
superstructure. Some results of analysis of the base isolated college building by the Armenian
Seismic Code and the time histories are also given in the paper.
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REFERENCES
[1] Melkumyan, M. : Base Isolation Retrofit Project In Armenia. Proceedings of the UNIDO
Workshop on Use of Natural Rubber Based Bearings for Earthquake Protection of Small
Buildings, Jakarta, Indonesia, 1994
[2] Fuller, K., Lim, C., Loo, S., Melkumyan, M., & Muniandy, K. : Design and Testing of High
Damping Rubber Earthquake Bearings for Retrofit Project in Armenia. Earthquake Hazard and
Seismic Risk Reduction. Editors - Serguei Balassanian, Armando Cisternas and Mikayel
Melkumyan, Kluwer Academic Publishers, The Netherlands, 379-385, 2000
[3] Melkumyan, M. : New Solutions in Seismic Isolation. LUSABATS, Yerevan, 2011
[4] Melkumyan, M., Kppeli, G., Khalatyan, R., & Hovivyan, H. : Application of Seismic
Isolation for Retrofitting of Existing 3-story Stone Building of the School #4 in the City of
Vanadzor, Armenia. Proceedings of the 8th World Seminar on Seismic Isolation, Energy
Dissipation and Active Vibration Control of Structures, Yerevan, Armenia, 557-565, 2003
[5] Melkumyan, M. : Recent Applications of Seismic Isolation in Civil Buildings in Armenia.
Proceedings of the 13th World Conference on Earthquake Engineering, Vancouver, British
Columbia, Canada, paper No.3318, 2004
[6] Melkumyan, M. : The State of the Art in Structural Control in Armenia and Proposal on
Application of the Dynamic Dampers for Seismically Isolated Buildings. Proceedings of the
Third International Workshop on Structural Control, Paris, France, 365-373, 2000
[7] Melkumyan, M. : Base and Roof Isolation for Earthquake Retrofitting and Protection of
Existing Buildings in Armenia. Proceedings of the International Symposium on Seismic Risk
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