211. EXPERIMENTAL AND COMPUTATIONAL ANALYSIS OF STEEL FRAME STRUCTURES SUBJECTED TO BLAST LOADING
Name: Lauren Krista Stewart
Grad Year: 2009
Damage and possible collapse of widely used steel frame structures resulting from a blast event is a source of continuing concern. Currently, there is no standard design procedure for steel frame systems subjected to blast loads or for the prevention of progressive collapse. Through testing and analysis, UCSD is currently investigating the performance of steel frame structures subjected to blast loading with specific emphasis on column and connection behavior in an effort to provide data and recommendations for designing structures that can withstand these types of threats.
For steel structures, the performance of the system is only as effective as the connecting elements. Connections are the most vulnerable elements within the system and proper design of these elements is essential to achieving satisfactory performance under blast forces. To fully understand the forces being applied to the connections, the behavior of the column must be adequately characterized. Utilizing the UCSD Blast Simulator funded by the Technical Support Working Groups (TSWG), numerous full-scale experimental tests have been conducted on typical W-sections. These tests have been used to develop testing protocol for both strong and weak axis impacts, provided high quality test data that contributed to the database of existing tests to provide insight into possible design scenarios. Computational analysis using LS-DYNA, a non-linear finite element code and CTH, a shock wave physics computer code was conducted to validate the computer models with field and experimental test data.
At present, UCSD is utilizing the results from the column component tests to conduct experiments and analysis involving basic steel structural systems. These tests include characterizing the behavior of steel column base plates for existing and new construction, investigating the effects of cladding as they pertain to loads delivered to the system, and the experimental loading of simplified upper, beam-column connections. The information from these tests along with continued computational effort will contribute to the formulation of design guidelines. These guidelines will provide further recommendations for column size and connection type for a given threat.