Video | Business Headlines | Internet | Science | Scientific Ethics | Technology | Search

 


UC Researching Seismic Design For Timber Buildings

UC Researching Seismic Design For Multi-storey Timber Buildings

June 24, 2013

A University of Canterbury (UC) research team is investigating a new type of design for multi-storey timber buildings to successfully withstand earthquakes.

UC researcher Andrew Dunbar says they are testing a combination of a low damage structural system with cross laminated timber.

``This is the first time in the world that anyone has done this. Cross laminated timber (CLT) panels are a new product to New Zealand, which started up at a Nelson factory last year,’’ Dunbar says.

``The panels are made like plywood with boards laid out in alternating directions. The difference is that CLT uses whole timber planks rather than thin veneers. Panels can be made from cheap low grade material to produce a quality structural material.

``In New Zealand and overseas multi-storey timber structures are becoming increasingly desirable for architects and building owners due to their aesthetic and environmental benefits.

``There is increasing public pressure to have low damage structural systems with minimal business interruption after a moderate to severe seismic event.

``The aim of our research is to combine a low damage structural system with CLT. We are being supervised by Professor Andy Buchanan and Associate Professor Stefano Pampanin.

``We are also using post-tensioned high strength steel tendons that clamp the CLT walls to the foundation. During an earthquake, the walls are allowed to rock and the high strength steel tendons act like rubber bands and snap the building back to its original position.

``This is the same concept that has been applied to the new Christchurch timber buildings in Victoria St, Birmingham Drive and the concrete Southern Cross Hospital Endoscopy building which was built before the earthquakes.’’

Dunbar says two test specimens are the feature of their research a low seismic option and a high seismic option. The low seismic option is aimed at the Auckland and Australian markets, replacing concrete tilt panels and shear cores.

The high seismic option is aimed for the Christchurch and Wellington areas providing a low damage system with replaceable energy dissipaters that act as ductile fuses.

The timber panels are much lighter than concrete providing smaller foundations meaning less expense.

``Our cross design system gives connections a much higher capacity than traditional timber using nails or bolts. This can be achieved at a comparable cost to concrete or steel while providing the added environmental and aesthetic benefits,’’ Dunbar says.

Final results of his research at UC’s Civil engineering and Natural Resources laboratory will be known at the end of the year. UC was recently ranked the 21st university in the world in terms of civil engineering and natural resources.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Budget Policy Statement: Spending Wins Over Tax Cuts; Big Ticket Items Get Boost

Income tax cuts are on hold as the government says “responding to the earthquakes and reducing debt are currently of higher priority”, although election year tax sweeteners remain possible. More>>

ALSO:

Fishy: Is Whitebaiting Sustainable?

The whitebait fry - considered a delicacy by many - are the juveniles of five species of galaxiid, four of which are considered threatened or declining. The SMC asked freshwater experts for their views on the sustainability of the whitebait fishery and whether we're doing enough to monitor the five species of galaxiid that make up whitebait. More>>

ALSO:

Crown Accounts: Smaller-Than-Expected Four-Month Deficit

The New Zealand government's accounts recorded a smaller-than-forecast deficit in the first four months of the fiscal year on a higher-than-expected inflow of corporate and goods and services tax. More>>

ALSO:

On For Christmas: KiwiRail Ferries Back In Full Operation After Quake

KiwiRail’s Interislander ferries are back in full operation for the first time since the Kaikoura earthquake, with the railspan that allows rail wagons to be loaded on the Aratere now restored. More>>

ALSO:

Comerce Commission Investigation: Prosecutions Over Steel Mesh Labelling

Steel & Tube Holdings, along with two other companies, will be prosecuted by the Commerce Commission following the regulator's investigation into seismic steel mesh, while Fletcher Building's steel division has been given a warning. More>>

ALSO:

Wine: 20% Of Marlborough Storage Tanks Damaged By Quake

An estimated 20 percent of wine storage tanks in the Marlborough region, the country’s largest wine producing area, have been damaged by the impact of the recent Kaikoura earthquake. More>>

ALSO:

ACC: Levy Recommendations For 2017 – 2019 Period

• For car owners, a 13% reduction in the average Motor Vehicle levy • For businesses, a 10% reduction in the average Work levy, and changes to workplace safety incentive products • For employees, due to an increase in claims volumes and costs, a 3% increase in the Earners’ levy. More>>

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Sci-Tech
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news