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Development Of Small Scale Models For K 12 And Undergraduate Students To Demonstrate Earthquake Effects On Building Structures And Aseismic Design Procedures

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2002 Annual Conference


Montreal, Canada

Publication Date

June 16, 2002

Start Date

June 16, 2002

End Date

June 19, 2002



Conference Session

Projects to promote eng.; teamwork,K-12

Page Count


Page Numbers

7.427.1 - 7.427.23



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Anant Kukreti

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Session 1660

Development of Small-Scale Models for K-12 and Undergraduate Students to Demonstrate Earthquake Effects on Building Structures and Aseismic Design Procedures

Anant R. Kukreti T. Michael Baseheart University of Cincinnati


This paper reports how several simple and portable demonstrations were developed which were geared toward educating and exciting Kindergarten through twelfth grade (K-12) students and college undergraduate students into the area of aseismic design. The need for more research and education in this area is evident with the massive destruction that continues to follow earthquakes all over the world. The paper first describes the basic experiments and associated equipment that can be used to quickly teach the principles of vibration. Second the paper describes the use of 1/24-scale building models to understand the basic principles of structural dynamics, and the use of dampers and base isolation devices as an aseismic strategy. These models can be used in a senior undergraduate structural dynamics elective course. The paper finally presents the features and use of structural dynamics models developed for K-12 students to provide them an exposure on effects of earthquakes on buildings. The paper also summarizes the learning experiences provided to the students who assisted in developing these models and experiments.

I. Introduction

Earthquakes are a constant source of both fascination and horror. Every few months there is another earthquake that rocks some unsuspecting population, usually with devastating results. The recent earthquake, of magnitude 7.9 on the Richter Scale, centered in the province of Gujarat, India left tens of thousands of people killed or injured and wiped out entire communities. In the city of Bhuj, nearly every building was destroyed from the earthquake. On the other extreme, the recent Nisqually Earthquake near Olympia, Washington had a comparable magnitude of 6.8 but resulted in only one death, from an earthquake related heart attack, and minor injuries numbering in the hundreds. There was also extensive damage to structures, but no total devastation. The difference in outcomes from these two earthquakes can be attributed to the use of aseismic design techniques. Aseismic design considers earthquake loading on

Proceedings of the 2002 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright © 2002, American Society for Engineering Education

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Kukreti, A. (2002, June), Development Of Small Scale Models For K 12 And Undergraduate Students To Demonstrate Earthquake Effects On Building Structures And Aseismic Design Procedures Paper presented at 2002 Annual Conference, Montreal, Canada. 10.18260/1-2--11279

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