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Structural Engineering and Mechanics   Volume 11, Number 3, March 2001, pages 237-258
Structural identification of a steel frame from dynamic test-data
A. Morassi(Italy)

Abstract     [Buy Article]
    Structural identification via modal analysis in structural mechanics is gaining popularity in
recent years, despite conceptual difficulties connected with its use. This paper is devoted to illustrate both
the capabilities and the indeterminacy characterizing structural identification problems even in quite simple
instances, as well as the cautions that should be accordingly adopted. In particular, we discuss an application
of an identification technique of variational type, based on the measurement of eigenfrequencies and mode
shapes, to a steel frame with friction joints under various assembling conditions. Experience has suggested,
so as to restrict the indeterminacy frequently affecting identification issues, having resort to all the a
priori acknowledged information on the system, to the symmetry and presence of structural elements with
equal stiffness, to mention one example, and mindfully selecting the parameters to be identified. In addition,
considering that the identification techniques have a local character and correspond to the updating of a
preliminary model of the structure, it is important that the analytical model on the first attempt should be
adequately accurate. Secondly, it has proved determinant to cross the results of the dynamic identification
with tests of other typology, for instance, static tests, so as to fully understand the structural behavior and
avoid the indeterminacy due to the nonuniqueness of the inverse problem.
Key Words
    structural identification; experimental modal analysis; steel frame.
A. Morassi, Department of Civil Engineering, University of Udine, Via delle Scienze 208, 33100 Udine, Italy

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