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Projects : CUREE-Caltech Woodframe Project

Element 5 - Education & Outreach
Project Manager: Jill Andrews - Caltech (formerly with SCEC)

Task 5.1 - House retrofitting:  Prototype exhibit with display components that can be adapted for use by museums, trade show exhibitors, and schools

ShakeZone, a community-based collaboration to create an earthquake exhibit for children and their families, offers the CUREE Woodframe Project the opportunity to capitalize on the host museum's resources (e.g., we're not paying for the shake tables, we're getting half a museum as a test bed for our prototypes, and other organizations are contributing via donations and cost-sharing). CUREE expects to be able to apply what we learn from this exhibit development to other museums in California and beyond (Istanbul is building a museum exhibit patterned after ours).

The goal of this exhibit is to provide global-to-local and local-to-global perspective of how the Earth changes; it will provide information and instruction regarding engineering, safety and mitigation related displays and information; and it will motivate individuals to actively prepare. The exhibit, which will prominently feature CUREE Woodframe-sponsored displays now under construction, is scheduled to be installed during the summer of 2001 at Riverside's Youth Museum (a.k.a. KidZone). For more information, see Appendix 5.1.1, ShakeZone outline, and Appendix 5.1.2, Biosketch.

Engineering aspects of the exhibit are explained in Appendix 5.1.3. The primary areas of the proposed earthquake exhibit that focus on engineering content are Entry Points 4 and 5 (Appendix 5.1.3, pages 2-4) and the shaketable(s). By engineering content we mean exhibit elements that communicate engineering concepts related to the effects of shaking on man-made structures. A preliminary breakdown of topics is as follows:

    • Man-made structures

    • The effects of shaking on structures

    • Buildings and construction techniques

    • How are buildings made safer

    • What individuals can do to improve building safety

In keeping with the global to local theme of the exhibit and the importance of personal empowerment we propose the following philosophy for the detailed development of the engineering content of entry points 4 and 5 and the shake table demonstrations.

    • Emphasize physics principles.

    • Emphasize engineering principles.

    • Emphasize community/government responsibility (codes and retrofitting) and personal responsibility (awareness and preparedness).

    • Emphasize engineering as about shaping and improving the way we live (an attempt to control our environment).

    • Emphasize the application of engineering principles at home.

Three subcontracts (54, 55, and 56) were awarded in the fall for design and construction of the following:

Subcontract 54, GG Schierle: Small Models (Tuck-Under Apartments, Hillside House); Rebuildable Shake Table Models (House w/out Anchor bolts, House on Cripple Walls, Soft Story Tuck-Under Apartments, Hillside House); and Display Boards to describe the models (Appendix 5.1.4 Subcontract 54). Drawings for displays have been approved.

Subcontract 55, Graphic Blade: Small-scale detailed models (Diorama of the Northridge Meadows Apartment complex, Appendix 5.1.5 Subcontract 55). A physical mockup of the building will be requested and reviewed by John Hall, Ed Takahashi, Bob Reitherman and Jill Andrews.

Subcontract 56, NorthRoad Builders: Large models of building components: Half-scale models of components of a wood house (1-1/2 story shear wall w/ hold-downs; cripple wall w/ retrofit anchorage and bracing schemes; anchorage of a hillside house; shearwall tester, Appendix 5.1.6 Subcontract 56). At this writing, Kelly Cobeen and Jim Russell were to review the drawings and return reviews by January 1, 2001.

Instructional Technology for the exhibit is also supported in part by the CUREE Woodframe Project. Web author and curriculum developer John Marquis is designing pre- and post-museum visit activities for teachers and students; a website featuring an exhibit virtual tour with links to related sites; one-site activities for self- or presenter-led programs; and related merchandise (Appendix 5.1.7 ShakeZone Instructional Technology).


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Consortium of Universities for Research in Earthquake Engineering
last updated 03.27.15