The Intersection of Earthquake Structural Response Monitoring and Structural Health Monitoring (Abstract)

by Robert Nigbor

Nigbor, Robert (2007). The Intersection of Earthquake Structural Response Monitoring and Structural Health Monitoring (Abstract). SMIP07 Seminar on Utilization of Strong-Motion Data, p. 115 - 116.


As stated in the recent Guideline for ANSS Seismic Monitoring of Engineered Civil Systems, the mission of response monitoring within the ANSS program is to provide data and information products that will (1) contribute to earthquake safety through improved understanding and predictive modeling of the earthquake response of engineered civil systems and (2) aid in post-earthquake response and recovery. The second mission component intersects with the distinct field of Structural Health Monitoring (SHM). SHM is a broad field encompassing research and applications in Mechanical, Aerospace, and Civil Engineering. It is a very active area, with dedicated conferences such as the annual International Workshop on Structural Health Monitoring and several journals dedicated to SHM research.

The goal of SHM is the timely detection, location, and quantification of structural damage. At the present time there are successful SHM applications in other fields where the structures are well-defined and standardized (such as aircraft or rotating machinery). In these fields, the benefit is clear and the benefit/cost ratio is favorable. In civil engineering, research and development abounds and instrumentation technology exists for providing the data needed for SHM of buildings, bridges, and other large structures. However, uncertainty in the assessment of damage clouds the benefit, and costs are high. That said, there is now opportunity for overlap between earthquake monitoring of structures and SHM. Multi-disciplinary advances in the technologies of sensor networks, data acquisition, communication, real-time computation and system identification techniques have the potential to provide a useful and reliable post-earthquake damage assessment for instrumented structures. Testbeds such as the CSMIP-instrumented Vincent Thomas Bridge and the ANSS-instrumented UCLA Factor Building demonstrate the future potential of this overlap, combining earthquake monitoring with continuous monitoring and recording of data for SHM applications.