Two Universities Working on Steel for Better Seismic Performance

Two research projects involve Johns Hopkins University, the University of North Texas, and the American Iron and Steel Institute's Seismic Code Team.

The American Iron and Steel Institute announced that its Seismic Code Team will partner with Johns Hopkins University and the University of North Texas on two research projects to improve the seismic performance of cold-formed steel for light-frame construction. The projects have received grants from the National Science Foundation.

"Both of these NSF-sponsored research projects will advance cold-formed steel light-frame design in buildings, bringing it to the next level by equipping engineers to utilize modern performance-based seismic designs for cold-formed steel," said Jay Larson, P.E., F. ASCE, managing director of AISI's Construction Technical Program. "AISI will provide technical support and guidance for the projects. We will also disseminate the findings to the research and practicing engineering communities to accelerate technology transfer of these advancements to the marketplace."

Benjamin Schafer, Ph.D., P.E., chairman of the Department of Civil Engineering at Johns Hopkins, received a $923,000 grant to study ways to improve the seismic performance of buildings that use CFS light-frame construction for their primary structure. His research team includes personnel from JHU, Bucknell University, and Devco Engineering. Cheng Yu, Ph.D., assistant professor and coordinator of the Construction Engineering Technology Program at the University of North Texas, received a $400,010 NSF CAREER grant to provide comprehensive research on cold-formed steel sheathed shear walls, with the goal of achieving enhanced ductility and strength for low-cost building construction in high-seismic and high-wind areas. The project will include:

  • Configuring a testing method to investigate the performance of CFS shear walls under realistic loading conditions to provide reliable experimental data
  • Establishing analytical models to predict the shear strength of CFS shear walls made with different sheathing materials

For ongoing information about the projects, visit http://www.ce.jhu.edu/cfsnees.

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