Research Papers

Fiber-Reinforced Elastomeric Bearings for Vibration Isolation

[+] Author and Article Information
James M. Kelly

Pacific Earthquake Engineering Research Center,
University of California, Berkeley
1301 S. 46th Street,
Richmond, CA 94804-4698
e-mail: jmkelly@berkeley.edu

Niel C. Van Engelen

Department of Civil Engineering,
McMaster University,
1280 Main Street W.,
Hamilton, ON L8S 4L7, Canada
e-mail: vanengn@mcmaster.ca

1Corresponding author.

Contributed by the Design Engineering Division of ASME for publication in the JOURNAL OF VIBRATION AND ACOUSTICS. Manuscript received March 10, 2015; final manuscript received September 14, 2015; published online November 19, 2015. Assoc. Editor: Walter Lacarbonara.

J. Vib. Acoust 138(1), 011015 (Nov 19, 2015) (6 pages) Paper No: VIB-15-1084; doi: 10.1115/1.4031755 History: Received March 10, 2015; Revised September 14, 2015

Fiber-reinforced elastomeric bearings were originally proposed as an alternative to conventional steel-reinforced elastomeric bearings for seismic isolation applications. The flexible fiber reinforcement is a light-weight and potentially cost saving alternative to steel reinforcement which is assumed rigid in the design process. The variety of fiber materials available also serves as an additional parameter for designers to tailor the vertical stiffness of the bearing. In this paper, the analytical solution for the vertical compression modulus of a rectangular elastomeric pad including the effects of bulk compressibility and extensibility of the fiber reinforcement is used to investigate the achievable decrease in vertical frequency. It is shown by an example that the extensibility of the fiber reinforcement can be used to significantly reduce the vertical stiffness in comparison to an equivalent steel-reinforced elastomeric bearing. The resulting decrease in the vertical frequency means that fiber-reinforced elastomeric bearings may have an advantage over steel-reinforced bearings in the vibration isolation of buildings.

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Fig. 1

Schematic of a vibration isolation design including side bearings

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Fig. 2

Restrained elastomeric pad (a) coordinate system and (b) lateral bulging

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Fig. 3

Forces per unit length acting on the fiber reinforcement in the x direction

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Fig. 4

Rectangular pad coordinate system

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Fig. 5

Compression modulus of a square pad including the bulk compressibility of the elastomer and extensibility of the reinforcement

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Fig. 6

Sensitivity of Ec to β2 for the example bearing assuming inextensible (α2=0) and extensible (α2=48) reinforcement

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Fig. 7

Sensitivity of ρ1/2 to the elastomer bulk compressibility and extensibility of the reinforcement




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