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Structural Engineering and Mechanics
  Volume 76, Number 2, October25 2020, pages 223-237

Seismic response and failure analyses of pile-supported transmission towers on layered ground
Haiyang Pan, Chao Li, Li Tian

    Transmission towers have come to represent one of the most important infrastructures in today’s society, which may suffer severe earthquakes during their service lives. However, in the conventional seismic analyses of transmission towers, the towers are normally assumed to be fixed on the ground without considering the effect of soil-structure interaction (SSI) on the pile-supported transmission tower. This assumption may lead to inaccurate seismic performance estimations of transmission towers. In the present study, the seismic response and failure analyses of pile-supported transmission towers considering SSI are comprehensively performed based on the finite element method. Specifically, two detailed finite element (FE) models of the employed pile-supported transmission tower with and without consideration of SSI effects are established in ABAQUS analysis platform, in which SSI is simulated by the classical p-y approach. A simulation method is developed to stochastically synthesize the earthquake ground motions at different soil depths (i.e. depth-varying ground motions, DVGMs). The impacts of SSI on the dynamic characteristic, seismic response and failure modes are investigated and discussed by using the generated FE models and ground motions. Numerical results show that the vibration mode shapes of the pile-supported transmission towers with and without SSI are basically same; however, SSI can significantly affect the dynamic characteristic by altering the vibration frequencies of different modes. Neglecting the SSI and the variability of earthquake motions at different depths may cause an underestimate and overestimate on the seismic responses, respectively. Moreover, the seismic failure mode of pile-supported transmission towers is also significantly impacted by the SSI and DVGMs.
Key Words
    pile-supported transmission tower, soil-structure interaction, depth-varying ground motions, seismic response, failure mode
Haiyang Pan/Dalian University of Technology
Chao Li/Dalian University of Technology
Li Tian/Shandong University

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