SEAONC Special Projects Initiative : Refrigerator Anchorage Shake Table Testing

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Estructure received a grant through the Structural Engineers Association of Northern California (SEAONC) Special Projects Initiative to conduct research on the seismic protection of floor-mounted equipment, specifically investigating the performance of freezers and refrigerators. Laboratory freezers/refrigerators pose seismic life safety hazards and often house specimens of great academic and financial value that must remain intact to prevent loss of irreplaceable research data. Despite the potential safety and financial losses associated with freezers/refrigerators and similar components, there is little research to guide design practice associated with their protection. This research compares the performance of common seismic restraint designs used on freezers, refrigerators and similar components under a range of ground motions with consideration of position retention, protection of contents, post-earthquake functionality and ease of use. Contributions from the Pacific Earthquake Engineering Research Center (PEER) and Computers and Structures, Inc. helped fund related shake table testing and analytical studies.