Characteristics and Implementations of Sliding Isolation Bearings


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Title: Characteristics and Implementations of Sliding Isolation Bearings

Author(s): Paul Bradford

Publication: Special Publication

Volume: 164


Appears on pages(s): 823-862

Keywords: Bearings; damping capacity; earthquake-resistant structures; reliability.

Date: 11/1/1996

The last several years have brought forth a dramatic increase in research, development, and implementation of sliding isolation bearings(1) (referenced SIB in this paper). And although isolation projects in the United States were once the sole domain of elastomeric bearings, expanding isolation needs have recently shifted attention in the direction of sliding isolation bearings with restoring force elements. High damping capabilities, dynamic stability, and reliability of response are among the key reasons for turning to SIBs. Disadvantages of SIBs such as potential high frequency vibration transfer, and lower limit force reductions need to be recognized and considered. The intrinsic potential of SIBS has been recognized for many years. The confluence of potential, equipment, funding, and need, triggered an SIB research boom in the mid 1980's. The lag of implementation from research is dependent upon many factors. including practicality, performance, need, market inertia, fiscal potential, design code state, time, and supplier wherewithal. The first bridge SIB installation in the US (Evansville, IN 1993), postdates by twenty years those of our engineering peers from other countries, such as Japan, New Zealand, Italy, Russia, etc.. Other SIB bridge installations have and are currently being implemented at a steadily increasing rate. Some of these installations and associated seismic details are highlighted.