Study trip to JRC Ispra

Technical visit to the ELSA Laboratory of the Joint Research Center of Ispra

February 12, 2001

The ELSA Laboratory is located in the Joint Research Center of Ispra (Varese), where several teams of researchers are involved in quality tests on materials, technical components and structures. The greatest attention is paid to the studies carried out in the field of damage caused by seismic phenomena on building structures.

The experiments that are carried out in the ELSA Laboratory have mainly the aim of creating numerical modeling responding to real structural behaviors. The study methodology is clearly of an analytical-experimental type. The objectives of the research, whether they are aimed at innovative materials or at full-scale structures, concern the behavior at the limit state. A further goal is to experiment with new restoration / reinforcement solutions.

The artifacts modified in their static and / or dynamic behavior are again subjected to loads in order to detect the behavior linked to the new conditions. The results of the experimental tests constitute the beginning of the subsequent mathematical formulation. The tests are carried out with two different types of experimental approach: with the use of a vibrating table or hydraulic jacks anchored in correspondence of the decks (the latter, also called pseudodynamic method). In the first case, real seismic inputs are applied to models built to scale. The transition from experimentation to mathematical formulation is penalized by the scale approach of the method. As regards the pseudodynamic method, if the model is in 1: 1 scale, the mathematical modeling is more reliable.

These tests are also carried out with a view to regulatory evolution.

Elena De Luca, Sara Omodei Salé and Monica Rosina participated in the visit.



11.00 – Arrival at JRC
11.00 – Welcome at JRC and Mission of the Unit (V. Renda)
11.15 – ELSA laboratory and the Pseudo-Dynamic method (V. Renda)
11.30 – Base Isolation and Energy Dissipation Devices (V. Renda)
11.45 – Retrofitting techniques and composite materials (E. Gutierrez)
12.00 – Structural diagnostics and “smart” materials (M. Whelan)
12.15 – Cultural Heritage structures (D. Tirelli)
12.30 – Models and tests for masonry structures (P. Pegon)
12.45 – Lunch at CCR-Ispra
14.15 – Visit at ELSA and discussion (G. Magonette and ELSA staff)
15.30 – Departure from JRC

In parallel with the visit at ELSA, Prof. Avramidou, V. Renda, P. Pegon, M. Whelan, Y. Le Pape and R. Bossi will discuss (half an hour, meeting room of Building 48) on the tests on masonry structure.