As interest has grown in using mass timber for commercial building projects, so too has the need to better understand the vibration characteristics of mass timber floor systems. Vibration requirements typically drive the spans and thicknesses of mass timber floors. Our team has a unique opportunity to close several crucial knowledge gaps while designing the new Health Sciences Education Building (HSEB) at the University of Washington, which is under design and is scheduled to start construction in the summer of 2019.
Case Study for Design Guide – The HSEB will be designed using the U.S. Mass Timber Floor Vibration Design Guide. Vibration performance will be measured to further validate or refine the model calibration suggestions put forth in the Design Guide.
Damping Measurements – The HSEB will contain a wide variety of program spaces with varying damping characteristics that will be measured and correlated.
Stiffness Measurements – Laboratory and in situ testing will be performed on a several floor framing systems. This will include a variety of span lengths and member depths. It will also include composite behavior of concrete and CLT floors with different connection types.
The results of this study will allow for more accurate predictions of floor vibrations. This will significantly reduce the cost of mass timber systems in way that is repeatable and scalable for future architects and engineers.
This study investigated the vibration serviceability of timber structures with dowel-type connections. It addressed the use of such connections in cutting-edge timber structures such as multi-storey buildings and long-span bridges, in which the light weight and flexibility of the structure make it possible that vibration induced by dynamic forces such as wind or footfall may cause discomfort to occupants or users of the structure, or otherwise impair its intended use. The nature of the oscillating force imposed on connections by this form of vibration was defined based on literature review and the use of established mathematical models. This allowed the appropriate cyclic load to be applied in experimental work on the most basic component of a dowel-type connection: a steel dowel embedding into a block of timber. A model for the stiffness of the timber in embedment under this cyclic load was developed based on an elastic stress function, which could then be used as the basis of a model for a complete connector. Nonlinear and time-dependent behaviour was also observed in embedment, and a simple rheological model incorporating elastic, viscoelastic and plastic elements was fitted to the measured response to cyclic load. Observations of the embedment response of the timber were then used to explain features of the behaviour of complete single- and multiple-dowel connections under cyclic load representative of in-service vibration. Complete portal frames and cantilever beams were tested under cyclic load, and a design method was derived for predicting the stiffness of such structures, using analytical equations based on the model for embedment behaviour. In each cyclic load test the energy dissipation in the specimen, which contributes to the damping in a complete structure, was measured. The analytical model was used to predict frictional energy dissipation in embedment, which was shown to make a significant contribution to damping in single-dowel connections. Based on the experimental results and analysis, several defining aspects of the dynamic response of the complete structures, such as a reduction of natural frequency with increased amplitude of applied load, were related to the observed and modelled embedment behaviour of the connections.
Vibration serviceability of various types of timber floor systems has claimed much attention during past decades. Yet the definition of robustly reliable engineering design approaches has remained elusive, except in well-defined situations. Successful de...
The ambient movement of three modern multi-storey timber buildings has been measured and used to determine modal properties. This information, obtained by a simple, unobtrusive series of tests, can give insights into the structural performance of these forms of building, as well as providing information for the design of future, taller timber buildings for dynamic loads. For two of the buildings, the natural frequency has been related to the lateral stiffness of the structure, and compared with that given by a simple calculation. In future tall timber buildings, a new design criterion is expected to become important: deflection and vibration serviceability under wind load. For multi-storey timber buildings there is currently no empirical basis to estimate damping for calculation of wind-induced vibration, and there is little information for stiffness under wind load. This study therefore presents a method to address those gaps in knowledge.
In order to address the lack of measured natural frequencies and damping ratios for wood and hybrid wood buildings, and lack of knowledge of vibration performance of innovative CLT floors and sound insulation performance of CLT walls and floors, FPInnovations conducted a series of performance testing at the Wood Innovation Design Centre (WIDC) in Prince George, BC in April 2014, during construction, and in May 2015, after building completion and during its occupation.
This report describes the building, tested floor and wall assemblies, test methods, and summarizes the test results. The preliminary performance data provides critical feedback on the design of the building for resisting wind-induced vibration and on the floor vibration controlled design. The data can be further used to validate the calculation methods and tools/models of dynamic analysis.
Project contact is Jianhui Zhou at the University of Northern British Columbia
The impact sound perceived in the lower volume in a building is radiated by the vibration of the ceiling transmitted from the vibration of the floor generated by an impact source in the upper volume. Thus, the dynamic behaviour of a floor is one crucial intermediate step to understand the impact sound insulation performance of such a floor. A key to reducing the impact sound is to isolate the structural floor from the subfloor. Floating floor construction is a common way of improving the impact sound insulation, which is to float a concrete topping on the mass timber floor with an elastic layer in between. There are two types of floating floor solutions, a) with a continuous elastic layer and b) with point bearing elastic mounts as shown in Figure 1. This study will investigate both solutions and will provide guidance on how to adopt both solutions for mass timber floors with an exposed ceiling.
The objectives of this project are:
1. To measure the sound insulation performance of mass timber floors with full-scale concrete topping on various continuous elastic interlayer materials
2. To measure the sound insulation performance of mass timber floors with full-scale concrete topping on discrete elastic load mounts
Project contact is Jianhui Zhou at the University of Northern British Columbia
Floor vibration performance could govern the allowable span of mass timber floors. The objectives of this project are:
1. to develop a mobile app to collect data from lab and field mass timber floors for acceleration-based performance criteria;
2. to investigate the dynamic properties of mass timber floors under different boundary conditions;
3. to adopt frequency equations to predict the fundamental frequencies of mass timber floors under different boundary conditions;
4. to develop numerical modeling strategies for predicting vibration response of mass timber floors under footfall excitations.
Soft-story wood-frame buildings have been recognized as a disaster preparedness problem for decades. There are tens of thousands of these multi-family three- and four-story structures throughout California and other cities in the United States. The majority were constructed between 1920 and 1970, with many being prevalent in the San Francisco Bay Area in California. The NEES-Soft project was a five-university multi-industry effort that culminated in a series of full-scale soft-story wood-frame building tests to validate retrofit philosophies proposed by (1) the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) P-807 guidelines and (2) a performance-based seismic retrofit (PBSR) approach developed within the project. Four different retrofit designs were developed and validated at full-scale, each with specified performance objectives, which were typically not the same. This paper focuses on the retrofit design using cross laminated timber (CLT) rocking panels and presents the experimental results of the full-scale shake table test of a four-story 370 m2 (4000 ft2) soft-story test building with that FEMA P-807 focused retrofit in place. The building was subjected to the 1989 Loma Prieta and 1992 Cape Mendocino ground motions scaled to 5% damped spectral accelerations ranging from 0.2 to 0.9 g.