3D FEM analysis of earthquake induced pounding responses between asymmetric buildings

Kaiming Bi, Hong Hao, Zhiguo Sun

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


Earthquake-induced pounding damages to building structures were repeatedly observed in many previous major earthquakes. Extensive researches have been carried out in this field. Previous studies mainly focused on the regular shaped buildings and each building was normally simplified as a single-degree-of-freedom (SDOF) system or a multi-degree-of-freedom (MDOF) system by assuming the masses of the building lumped at the floor levels. The researches on the pounding responses between irregular asymmetric buildings are rare. For the asymmetric buildings subjected to earthquake loading, torsional vibration modes of the structures are excited, which in turn may significantly change the structural responses. Moreover, contact element was normally used to consider the pounding phenomenon in previous studies, which may result in inaccurate estimations of the structural responses since this method is based on the point-to-point pounding assumption with the predetermined pounding locations. In reality, poundings may take place between any locations. In other words, the pounding locations cannot be predefined. To more realistically consider the arbitrary poundings between asymmetric structures, detailed three-dimensional (3D) finite element models (FEM) and arbitrary pounding algorithm are necessary. This paper carries out numerical simulations on the pounding responses between a symmetric rectangular-shaped building and an asymmetric L-shaped building by using the explicit finite element code LS-DYNA. The detailed 3D FEMs are developed and arbitrary 3D pounding locations between these two buildings under bi-directional earthquake ground motions are investigated. Special attention is paid to the relative locations of two adjacent buildings. The influences of the left-and-right, fore-and-aft relative locations and separation gap between the two buildings on the pounding responses are systematically investigated.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)377-386
Number of pages10
JournalEarthquake and Structures
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2017
Externally publishedYes


  • 3D FEM
  • Arbitrary pounding
  • Irregular asymmetric building
  • Relative location
  • Torsional responses

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering


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