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Interactive Remote Shake Table Laboratory for Instruction in Earthquake Engineering

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2016 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


New Orleans, Louisiana

Publication Date

June 26, 2016

Start Date

June 26, 2016

End Date

August 28, 2016





Conference Session

Proven Strategies in Classroom Engagement Part II: Activities for Creative Pedagogy

Tagged Division

Civil Engineering

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Paper Authors


Zhaoshuo Jiang P.E. San Francisco State University Orcid 16x16

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Dr. Jiang graduated from the University of Connecticut with a Ph.D. degree in Civil Engineering. Before joining San Francisco State University as an assistant professor, he worked for Skidmore, Owings & Merrill (SOM) LLP. As a licensed professional engineer in the states of Connecticut and California, Dr. Jiang has been involved in the design of a variety of low-rise and high-rise projects. His current research interests mainly focus on Smart Structures Technology, Structural Control and Health Monitoring and Innovative Engineering Education.

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Alec William Maxwell San Francisco State University

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Alec Maxwell is currently an undergraduate student in the School of Engineering at San Francisco State University (SFSU). Besides actively conducting research on innovative tools for engineering education in the Intelligent Structural Hazards Mitigation Laboratory at SFSU with Prof. Zhaoshuo Jiang, he also serves the community as the President of the American Society of Civil Engineers for the SFSU chapter.

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Bench-scale shake tables are an engaging tool to conduct hands-on experiments for educating students about the importance of earthquake engineering by demonstrating how structures respond to earthquake ground motions. Through these hands-on experiments, students may easily build or modify scaled structural models to test theories and implement their own innovations to examine how these structures behave. A collaborative effort was initiated by Prof. Shirley Dyke to establish the University of Consortium of Instruction Shake Table (UCIST) which endeavored to enhance the education of students through the procurement of instructional bench-scale shake tables, the development of curricula, and the dissemination of these tools to other institutions. Partnered with a former NSF-sponsored premier cyberenvironment project, the George E. Brown Network for Earthquake Engineering Simulation (NEES), UCIST developed a shake table laboratory, which allows the remote control and participation of the shake table for hands-on experiments. In this study, a modified version of the remote shake table laboratory which has adopted the more widely used Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol (TCP/IP) as the communication protocol is developed. The modification allows a much more user-friendly set up process and opens up opportunities to connect the shake tables with modern mobile devices such as smartphones, tablets and wearable devices for potential control and participation of the shake table experiments. Thanks to the versatility of the TCP/IP, a mobile remote shake table laboratory is further proposed to meet the learning styles of the new generation. In this paper, the developed interactive remote shake table laboratories will be discussed in detail and a corresponding teaching module for the proposed mobile shake table laboratory is demonstrated.

Jiang, Z., & Maxwell, A. W. (2016, June), Interactive Remote Shake Table Laboratory for Instruction in Earthquake Engineering Paper presented at 2016 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, New Orleans, Louisiana. 10.18260/p.25437

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