Experimental Methods in Earthquake Engineering

IUSS Pavia
EE - Earthquake Engineering
Fall 2009
Date (from - to):
11/01/2010 – 05/02/2010

The course is intended as an introduction of graduate students to the experimental techniques and measurements employed in engineering and specifically in earthquake engineering. The course content comprises:

  • Basic knowledge for designing an experimental campaign, scope of the testing, etc.
  • Principles of designing test set‐ups, planning and preparation.
  • Dimensional analysis, similitude requirements, true and distorted models, scaled tests.
  • Testing methods: static, dynamic, pseudodynamic, artificial excitation
  • Servo‐hydraulic testing systems: loading systems (actuators, servovalves, pumps), system control theory
  • Sensors. Principles of operation, sensor characteristics, sensor mounting, converters
  • Data collection, data acquisition (hardware and software), data analysis and presentation.
  • Structural monitoring, in‐situ vibration testing, Lab exercises, homework and example experimental studies.


CONTENTS: INTRODUCTION MODELING AND SIMILITUDE - FUNDAMENTALS Dimensional Analysis, Scale Factors, Dynamic Similitude etc. APPLICATIONS OF MODELS Static problems, Dynamic problems TEST PLANNING, DESIGN AND IMPLEMENTATION Experimental design factors and process INSTRUMENTATION Mechanical, Electrical, Hydraulic, control fundamentals, sensors, Calibration process, Large testing equipment. DATA ACQUISITION Analog systems, Digital systems, software etc. DATA PROCESSING Data reduction, validation of results, report preparation etc. LARGE SCALE TESTING Modal Analysis, Quasi-static, Pseudo-Dynamic, Shake table tests etc. EXPERIMENTAL ACTIVITY ON ANTI-SEISMIC DEVICES Existing codes, examples.