Development of self-centring energy-dissipative rocking columns equipped with SMA tension braces

Yan Wen Li, Michael C.H. Yam, Ping Zhang, Ke Ke, Yan Bo Wang

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

10 Citations (Scopus)


Energy-dissipative rocking (EDR) columns are a class of seismic mitigation device capable of dissipating seismic energy and preventing weak-story failure of moment resisting frames (MRFs). An EDR consists of two hinge-supported steel columns interconnected by steel dampers along its height. Under earthquakes, the input seismic energy can be dissipated by plastic energy of the steel dampers in the EDR column. However, the unrecoverable plastic deformation of steel dampers generally results in residual drifts in the structural system. This paper presents a proof-of-concept study on an innovative device, namely self-centring energy-dissipative rocking (SC-EDR) column, aiming at enabling self-centring capability of the EDR column by installing a set of shape memory alloy (SMA) tension braces. The working mechanism of the SC-EDR column is presented in detail, and the feasibility of the new device is carefully examined via experimental and numerical studies considering the parameters of the SMA bar diameter and the steel damper plate thickness. The seismic responses including load carrying capacities, stress distributions, base rocking behaviour, source of residual deformation, and energy dissipation are discussed in detail. A rational combination of the steel damper and the SMA tension braces can achieve excellent energy dissipation and self-centring performance.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)611-628
Number of pages18
JournalStructural Engineering and Mechanics
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 10 Jun 2022


  • energy dissipation
  • self-centring
  • shape memory alloy (SMA)
  • steel rocking column
  • tension brace

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Building and Construction
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering


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