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Seismic Design Team Wins 2nd at EERI Annual Meeting

April 3, 2017

The 14th annual EERI Undergraduate Seismic Design Competition took place March 7-10, 2017 in Portland, Oregon, held in conjunction with the EERI Annual Meeting. Thirty-four teams, both national and international, were invited to participate.

The design prompt was to create a proposal for a multi-use high rise in Portland's rapidly developing Pearl District, featuring an atrium and a green roof and capable of withstanding earthquakes as strong as those that the nearby Cascadia Subduction Zone can produce. The teams constructed 5-ft tall model towers out of balsa wood, seeking to produce the most efficient, seismically sound, and architecturally appealing designs. During the competition, teams gave presentations describing their towers' key structural features and contribution to the Portland cityscape, displayed posters promoting the tower, and--the main event--tested the structures. After being loaded with about 25 lbs of dead load, the towers were put on a shake table and subjected to three simulated earthquakes of increasing intensity, prepared by the EERI SLC. Tower performance during the ground motions was judged based on peak roof acceleration and drift.

Stanford's Arcs.V Tower survived all three ground motions with the seventh-lowest seismic cost among all the towers. The team also placed second in design proposal and first in presentation. With all scoring elements considered, Stanford placed second in the final rankings after Cornell University.

The team members who traveled to Portland for competition are: Evelyn Li (captain), Andrea Mosqueda, Aubrey Kingston, Brandon Cortez, Josiah Clark, Nikhil Chaudhuri, Sam Schreiber, Tim Ngo, and graduate student advisor Amory Martin. The rest of the team consists of Chloe Wiggins, Erick Blankenberg, Kutay Serova, Natalie Ferrante, and Sarah Tieu.