University Consortium for Instructional Shake Tables

The University Consortium for Instructional Shake Tables (UCIST) proposal to the National Science Foundation was funded this year. The tri-center collaborative effort was spearheaded by the Mid-America Earthquake Center (MAE) center with support from PEER and the Multidisiplinary Center for Earthquake Engineering (MCEER). Specifically, 8 universities from MAE and MCEER and 15 universities from PEER committed $6,000 each toward the cost of the mini–shake tables and associated experiments. An evaluation of three vendors was made by a committee composed of representatives from MAE, MCEER, and PEER in October 1999. The committee selected Quanser Consulting based upon the quality of their hardware and software. The single-axis table weighs approximately 60 lb and has a 33-lb payload capacity. The operational bandwidth is 20 Hz. The peak velocity is 33 in./sec with a 2.5 g peak acceleration and stroke of 6 in. Quanser began delivery of the mini–shake tables in August 2000. MAE, MCEER, and PEER will cooperatively develop classroom-oriented experiments that will broaden the treatment of earthquake engineering in the undergraduate and graduate. This tool also can serve as a means of outreach to precollege students, nonengineering students, and the general public about the potential consequences of earthquakes and the dynamic behavior of civil engineering structures.

PEER Graduate Course Modules

Starting in Year 2, PEER began a cross-center collaboration with MAE and MCEER in the development of graduate course modules. While each center is committed to develop one World Wide Web-based course module per year for at least three years, the response to PEER’s request for proposals was so enthusiastic that three modules were funded in the following topic areas:

*Fluid-Structure Interaction — Medhat Haroun
* Wave Propagation — Pedro Arduino
* Earthquake Engineering Design — Steve Mahin

The Education Program has funded another four graduate course modules for Year 3. The topics covered will be

* Earthquake-Resistant Reinforced Concrete Structural Design —Jack Moehle
* Seismic Motion Characterization and Hazard — Allin Cornell
* Seismic Upgrading of Green Library in Stanford University: A PBE Case Study —Eduardo Miranda
* Interactive Web-Based Learning Modules for Seismic Behavior of Timber Structures —Dave Pollock.

Gerard C. Pardoen, Professor
Department of Civil & Environmental Engineering
University of California, Irvine