Provision of access to the following infrastructure:


Name of the infrastructure and its installations:
(1) 9DLAB Shaking Table and (2) MOBILAB


Location of the infrastructure:
Via Ferrata 1, 27100 Pavia (PV), Italy


Web site address:


Reference contact for potential TA user groups:
Gerard J. O’Reilly – gerard.oreilly@iusspavia.it


The EUCENTRE Foundation is a non-profit organisation that promotes, supports and sustains training and research in the field of seismic risk mitigation and houses leading experimental facilities in the field of earthquake engineering. IUSS is one of just five post-graduate Schools of Excellence for Advanced Studies recognized by the Italian Government to develop cutting-edge research and deliver advanced MSc and PhD programmes. IUSS is one of the key players in risk reduction based in Pavia and has proven itself over the years as a leading institution in advanced training and research within the field of natural hazards. Through its Centre for Training and Research on Reduction of Seismic Risk (ROSE Centre, http://www.iusspavia.it/rose), it collaborates closely with the European Centre for Training and Research in Earthquake Engineering (EUCENTRE) Foundation, also in Pavia. The latest additions to its experimental testing array, which are offered as part of ERIES, comprise two installations:


These two installations recently arrived as part of IUSS’s prestigious “Department of Excellence” project funded by the Italian Ministry for University and Research and are housed as part of the EUCENTRE’s facilities.
The 9DLAB shaking table has been designed according to the most innovative technologies targeting the capability to reproduce the multi-directional absolute floor motions at various levels of building structures excited by earthquake ground motions. The system is composed of a six degree of freedom (6DOF) shaking table, which has been implemented with an additional 3DOF grid platform at 4m height to give an overall system known as the 9DLAB (shown below). It gives the possibility to represent two adjacent floor levels in a building and a total of 14 actuators ensure the capacity of the system in terms of acceleration, velocity and displacement. The structure of the base table is a honeycomb like steel network to ensure high stiffness and a reduced mass, compatible with the forces developed during the structural tests, the 6DOF are governed by four double ended actuators for longitudinal and transversal movement and four single ended actuators for vertical movement, the overturning moment is compensated by means of two pull down actuators loaded at 1.500kN. The table size is 4.80m x 4.80m with a total stroke displacement capacity of 1m in the longitudinal and transversal directions and 0.140m in the vertical. The upper 3DOF platform is made of hollow tubular aluminium sections. Eight 0.75 x 1.00 meter square openings are available in central position which can accommodate pass through, tall, or wide, non-structural elements (e.g., heating, ventilating and air conditioning ducts) that may span more than one level. The grid platform is supported by four hollow tubular steel columns equipped with spherical swivels and it is connected with four actuators with 2m of full stroke positioned with an angle of 90° between each other. Each actuator is capable of providing 150kN of force in tension and compression and is activated by an 890l/min servo-valve operating at a pressure of 28MPa, thereby allowing a peak horizontal velocity of 3m/s at the top platform and 2m/s at the base shaking table. The grid platform size is 5.00m x 7.00m. The interstorey displacement of the system is limited by the rotational capability of the swivels and is ±1.70m in the longitudinal direction and ±1.1m in the transversal direction. A closed loop RT control on single DOF drives the testing facility simulations. Data can be recorded using an acquisition system of 150-channels (18-bit Analog-digital converter), a contactless machine-vision system for displacement monitoring is also available for shake table testing.


The 9DLAB shaking table provides a high level of flexibility for the real-time seismic testing of non-structural elements. All types of non-structural elements can be investigated by this test frame. Free-standing components that are mainly influenced by horizontal accelerations can be positioned on the upper testing grid. Architectural components that are mainly influenced by interstorey drifts, such as partition walls, can be inserted between the shaking table and the upper-level testing grid. Finally, non-structural elements that are influenced by both accelerations and drifts, such as pressurized piping systems found in industrial plants and suspended ceilings in office environments, can be run into various geometrical configurations and attached to various support points. Non-structural elements spanning over large horizontal areas (e.g., sprinkler piping systems) can be tested with the proposed equipment by attaching stiff horizontal outriggers components to the testing grid in order to extend the testing areas of the grids and provide supplemental attachment points to the non-structural elements under test.

The main characteristics of the mobile system MOBILAB have been designed with the aim to give further contributions to potential advancements in the research on experimental investigations and strengthening intervention techniques. It has been constructed to perform both alternative in-situ experimental evaluations of the dynamic response of real scale buildings subjected to seismic events and state of the art tests on soil currently not feasible with any other test facilities worldwide. This is to foster the study on the response of real structures, as well as the performances of components and non-structural elements with their peculiar physical-mechanical characteristics in their real state of maintenance. The mobile laboratory system consists of four hydraulic actuators of 1000 kN each one, a hydraulic system with a flow capacity of 6000 l/min, a shelter power station of 600 kW and a digital controller. The MOBILAB system has a displacement capacity of ±250 mm, peak velocity of 500 mm/s, accelerations up to 0.3 g or 1.2 g for specimens with masses not exceeding 1000 t or 150 t, respectively. A peculiar characteristic of the system is that it will move to the specific location where the tests will be performed (i.e., it is a mobile laboratory with high test capacity), assembled and then dismantled at the end of the test. For this reason, the actuators and the components of the hydraulic system (i.e., pumps, accumulators, reservoir, refrigerator and cooling system, hard line and flexible hoses) are carried by two different trailers, while the power station requires a proper own trailer, controller and signal conditioners are installed on a smaller van.
Unlike traditional vibrodynes or shakers, the dynamic performance of the MOBILAB system in terms of force capability at lower frequencies are suitable in order to excite bridge structures, viaducts and eventually dams. In addition, the system covers a frequency range of about 0.2–20 Hz and can generate various signals, in particular random waves at constant amplitude (up to ± 250 mm) with variable frequencies; thus, it is possible to determine the dynamic characteristics of different structural configurations, both rigid and flexible (for instance included in the range of about 0.05 s–3 s). In the same way, the capacity to develop very high forces at low frequencies makes the MOBILAB system appropriate for active field test methods to determine the liquefaction resistance of soil deposits directly in-situ which is one of the most challenging and unexplored experimental activities worldwide.
Services currently offered by the infrastructure:
The core activities of EUCENTRE are: applied research in the field of earthquake engineering, with a view to improve existing practice in assessment and reduction of seismic vulnerability and risk; support work towards the development of guidance documents for both practitioners and governing bodies; scientific and technological consultancy, at both national and international levels; training for practitioners and technicians.


Access to (i) 9DLAB shaking table and (ii) MOBILAB


Modality of access under this proposal:
Transnational Access to a number of selected user-groups will be granted for the use of the 9DLAB shaking table at EUCENTRE Laboratories of Pavia (Italy) and access to the MOBILAB system for Experimental In-Situ Dynamic Tests. Travel and subsistence costs for the users will be covered both for the preliminary meeting and for the testing phase. EUCENTRE secretariat will help all the users for the logistics. Roughly, it can be considered that for both installations, each project will use about 25 access days, including about 7 days (3 preliminary meetings and 4 days of tests) spent with the infrastructure by the users.
Access to the 9DLAB shaking table will be given to projects focused on seismic risk reduction involving dynamic studies on scaled or real scale no-structural elements, components and systems including industrial facilities with the goal of loss-driven mitigation, risk quantification and prioritisation techniques. Users interested in multi-DOF control issues may submit proposals for software implementation, development and testing. Access to the MOBILAB system will be given to projects focused on seismic risk reduction involving dynamic in-situ studies on real buildings and soil. Users interested in multi-DOF control issues may submit proposals for software implementation, development and testing.
Since the two installations involve the collaboration of both IUSS and EUCENTRE, the TA costs for the direct operation will be handled by the laboratory staff of the EUCENTRE, whereas a small contribution in terms of scientific expertise is provided by IUSS.


Support offered under this proposal:
Each user group participating in TA will be working closely, for the whole user project duration, with the EUCENTRE staff to fully exploit the resources of the Lab. In case of necessity, real-time data reduction procedures can be used to adjust the testing protocol, even during the testing phases. EUCENTRE normally provides this kind of support for non-standard projects. As standard for our institution, each user will receive all the acquired raw data, videos and photos. Additionally, based on users’ needs, automated routines for data reduction and results interpretation can be developed in order to facilitate the users’ work.


Outreach to new users:
Nowadays, EUCENTRE and IUSS attract users using its web site and pages on social networks (LinkedIn, ResearchGate, etc.). Besides, EUCENTRE organizes short courses for professionals spreading state-of-the-art knowledge regarding many different aspects of earthquake and geotechnical engineering. During these courses, testing activities are often mentioned and experimental data is used as a base for practical examples. SMEs and industries are strictly collaborating with EUCENTRE and membership procedures have been activated for many years.


Review procedure under this proposal:
For details on the TA evaluation process, please refer to Task 1.2 of WP1 and the process followed by the TA-SEP in particular.

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