Symposium Offers Sneak Peek at Lab

I bet you’d be shocked if someone told you the epicenter for structural engineering was located in Stockton, California. Well, for two days in late October this year, it was. That’s where Simpson Strong-Tie held its 2013 Light-Frame Engineering Symposium.

More than 150 industry professionals attended, including principals and project managers from the top engineering and architectural firms throughout the United States as well as local policy makers, researchers and a number of Simpson Strong-Tie engineers.

The event included several informative presentations by leading experts on topics such as design and analysis of diaphragms and multi-story shear walls, designing high-rise structures with wood, podium deck anchorage, soft-story retrofit testing, code reports and the future direction of building codes.

Steve Pryor gives an overview of the lab's testing capabilities.
Steve Pryor gives an overview of the lab’s testing capabilities.

In addition, the group was given a sneak peek into the testing done at Simpson Strong-Tie’s Tyrell Gilb Research Laboratory.

The first demonstration test was a three-story Strong Frame® Special Moment Frame on the shake table. To illustrate the effects of different types of ground motions, three different earthquake ground motions were

Three-story Strong® Frame Special Moment Frame on Uni-Directional Shake Table
Three-story Strong® Frame Special Moment Frame on Uni-Directional Shake Table

selected and each was scaled to a target spectrum ranging from 0.4g on the first test to 1.5g on the final test.

One of our earlier blog posts was about concrete anchorage in compliance with ACI 318 Appendix D. We ran two anchor tests near the edge of slab – one without and one with anchor reinforcing.

Near Edge Podium Anchorage Testing
Near Edge Podium Anchorage Testing

We also broke a concrete beam reinforced with layers of carbon fiber (FRP) and did cyclic loading of both a double Strong-Wall® SB Shearwall specimen and a 16-inch diameter by 18-foot tall timber pile reinforced with the FX-70® Structural Repair and Protection System (see previous post for more on testing of the FX-70 System).

They say that a single picture is worth a thousand words, but those of us in the engineering community have a saying of our own: “One test result is worth a thousand expert opinions.” We ran seven tests at the symposium, so we had no shortage of them!

Symposium participants take a closer look at the test equipment.
Symposium participants take a closer look at the test equipment.

Sharing those opinions and asking questions was encouraged and they definitely led to many great, in-depth conversations throughout the event.

In addition to the technical discussions and testing, the symposium was an excellent opportunity for networking. The reception and dinner gave old and new friends alike a chance to re-connect and discuss current happenings in the field of structural engineering.

Based on feedback from those in attendance, the symposium was a huge success. Not only did everyone enjoy the event, but they left a little more knowledgeable than when they arrived. They also helped put Stockton on the map.

What are your thoughts? Visit the blog and leave a comment!

 

 

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Keith Cullum

Author: Keith Cullum

Keith is a Branch Engineer at Simpson Strong-Tie. After graduating with a degree in Architectural Engineering from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, he worked for an engineering consulting firm in Southern CA designing commercial structures in steel, concrete and masonry, and multi- and single-family residential structures in cold-formed steel and wood. Prior to joining Simpson Strong-Tie in 2012, he worked for a steel deck manufacturer performing R&D and providing product technical support and promotion. He is a LEED Accredited Professional (AP) and a registered Professional Engineer in multiple states (CA, TX, OK, KS, MO, AL, AR, and MS).

1 thought on “Symposium Offers Sneak Peek at Lab”

  1. The lab tour was a lot of fun, and I feel really privileged to have participated in it. Thank you Simpson Strong-Tie for the amazing opportunity!

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