Risk-Informed Selection of Steel Connections for Seismic Zones

David de León-Escobedo, Alfredo Reyes-Salazar


The fi ndings about the fragile behavior of steel welded connections after the Northridge 1994 earthquake, specially for frames designed to withstand lateral force, has brought an amount of new attention to the design and safety
issues of the welded connections for structures located on seismic zones. In México, practitioners and designers are wondering about the seismic effectiveness of the several kinds of connections as used in steel structures. A decision must be made to balance the safety required with the costs incurred
after exceeding the serviceability limit state. Structural reliability techniques provide the proper framework to include the inherent uncertainties into the design process. Registered motions after the 1985 Mexico City earthquake are properly scaled according to the seismic hazard curve for soft soil in
Mexico City. Earthquake occurrence is modeled as a Poisson process and the expected life-cycle cost is taken as the decision criteria. Parametric analyses allow the identifi cation of dominant variables and ranges where one option is more recommendable than the other one. The proposed formulation may support designers and builders for the decision making process about the selection of the convenient connection type for the seismic zones with soft soil in Mexico City.

Palabras clave

bolted and welded connections, seismic response, life-cycle expected cost, seismic risk

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