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Seismic instrumentation of buildings

October 1, 2000

The purpose of this report is to provide information on how and why we deploy seismic instruments in and around building structures.

The recorded response data from buildings and other instrumented structures can be and are being primarily used to facilitate necessary studies to improve building codes and therefore reduce losses of life and property during damaging earthquakes. Other uses of such data can be in emergency response situations in large urban environments.

The report discusses typical instrumentation schemes, existing instrumentation programs, the steps generally followed in instrumenting a structure, selection and type of instruments, installation and maintenance requirements and data retrieval and processing issues. In addition, a summary section on how recorded response data have been utilized is included. The benefits from instrumentation of structural systems are discussed.