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Dr. Benson Shing

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University of California , San Diego

9500 Gilman Drive

La Jolla, California 92093

United States

Company Description

The University of California San Diego is a student-centered, research-focused, service-oriented public institution that provides opportunity for all. Recognized as one of the top 15 research universities worldwide and born of a culture of collaboration, ... more

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Background Information



Web References (23 Total References)

NEESinc > Governance > Committees > Site Operations Committee (SOC) [cached]

Benson Shing University of California, San Diego

Equipment Site Representative

UC San Diego researchers tour Mexicali earthquake damage. | Meridian Collective [cached]

Daylight filters through a large crack in a stairwell as Dr. Benson Shing, Vice Chair of the Department of Structural Engineering at the University of California, San Diego, inspects the earthquake damage at a hospital in Mexicali, April 7, 2010.

CUREE: The Organization [cached]

P. Benson Shing

P. Benson ShingUC San Diego

UC San Diego Engineers Lead National Effort to Save Lives and Buildings During Earthquakes | Salt Water Media [cached]

While many people believe that earthquakes mainly happen in California, there is also significant seismic risk in the Midwest and Eastern United States, said Benson Shing, a UC San Diego structural engineering professor who is leading the project.

"We have low probability, high consequence events in those parts of the countries, so the performance of reinforced masonry structures in earthquakes is very important," Shing said.
Shing said these types of structures demonstrated good performance in the 1994 Northridge Earthquake. The structure being tested has been designed according to the latest building code requirements. In theory, Shing said, it should perform even better than those built before Northridge. However, neither current nor pre-Northridge designs have been tested in an extraordinarily strong earthquake or with a large scale shake table test like this one.
"The building design code has been changing over the years," Shing said.
In the second phase of the project, Shing and his colleagues will test, in early 2012, a two-story, low-rise masonry structure with smaller window openings.
"This type of building is difficult to analyze so it presents a major challenge in design," Shing said. "You can't reliably assess the performance of these structures with analytical methods normally used by engineers. Hopefully we can use our data to develop better design methodologies and analytical tools."
While life safety is high on the list for protecting these structures from severe earthquake damage or collapse, economics is also an important consideration. Shing said it's critical to minimize the life cycle cost of the buildings by avoiding costly repairs after major earthquakes.
"Civil structures are very different from airplane structures," Shing said.

Benson Shing, a structural ... [cached]

Benson Shing, a structural engineering professor at UCSD and the lead investigator on the project, said one goal is to help upgrade building codes to improve earthquake resistance. "This shows us there's a lot of room for improvement," Shing said as he stood near the fallen bricks.

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