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MCEER Bulletin, Volume 21, Number 1, Spring 2007

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Volume 21, Number 1, Spring 2007

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MCEER-SLC Competes in Sixth Annual APEC-IDEERS Seismic Design Competition in Taiwan


Over 200 students from around the world participated in the competition

In the Fall of 2006, 24 teams of graduate students from Taiwan, China, Malaysia, Vietnam, Hong Kong, and the United States competed in the 2006 Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation-Introduction and Demonstration of Earthquake Engineering Research in Schools (APEC-IDEERS) Seismic Design Competition. The event was held September 22-24, 2006 at the National Center for Research on Earthquake Engineering (NCREE) in Taipei, Taiwan. Held since 2001, the event aims to generate student interest in structural engineering and disaster mitigation. In addition to the graduate teams, 36 undergraduate and 36 high school teams participated in the competition.


The MCEER team (from left): Bing Qu, Marlon Hill and Yu Chen Ou

The goal of the graduate competition was for each team to retrofit a two-story benchmark model. All teams constructed the model with materials provided by NCREE and were asked to add some form of energy dissipation to increase its performance. The model buildings were designed to carry a 10 kg mass on each floor and were subjected to earthquakes ranging from 400 -1200 gal. While increasing the seismic performance of the model, the main goal was for the design to sustain a 1000 gal (1.02 g) earthquake. Not only was each team judged on the seismic performance and architectural features of their buildings, but also on an oral presentation of their design.

Marlon Hill (Florida A&M University), Bing Qu and Yu-Chen Ou (University at Buffalo) represented the MCEER SLC at the competition. The team designed a roller bearing base isolation system with viscous dampers. Scoring for the graduate competition was based on a multiple of the presentation, the mass, and the performance of the structure. The MCEER SLC team, the only American team to participate, placed 11th out of 24 teams overall and won first place for best presentation and most creative design.