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Multi-Axial Full-Scale Sub-Structural Testing & Simulation

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Multi-Axial Full-scale Sub-Structuring Testing & Simulation Facility  (University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign)

Research Focus & Anticipated Benefits

The Multi-Axial Full-Scale Sub-Structural Testing & Simulation (MUST-SIM) at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign is part of the George E. Brown Jr. Network for Earthquake Engineering Simulation (NEES) supported by the National Science Foundation (NSF). The facility creates a physical-analytical simulation environment whereby multi-axial full-scale models can be subjected to complex testing conditions, representing earthquake ground motion.

NEES is the centerpiece of NSF’s ongoing priority to understand earthquakes and prevent or mitigate the damage they cause. NEES is a network of sites available for experimentation on-site, in the field, and through remote operations. The network helps researchers understand how earthquake and tsunami forces affect ground motion and soil liquefaction as well as the built environment—buildings, bridges, utility systems—and near-shore and coastal environments. The NEES networking cyberinfrastructure connects equipment sites and provides a tele-presence, a curated central data repository, simulation tools and collaborative tools for facilitating on-line planning, execution and post-processing of experiments.

Education & Outreach

The MUST-SIM Facility has hosted high-school students for the Discover Engineering  workshop, where students competed to build the strongest, stiffest, and most ductile steel-reinforced cantilever concrete beam. The event included many planned and prospective users of the MUST-SIM facility.

The NEES Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) program is a dynamic 10-week summer research program for upper division undergraduate students interested in Civil Engineering, Computer Science/Engineering, Electrical Engineering, and other fields related to seismic risk mitigation testing. REU participants are paired with a faculty advisor, join a NEES research team, and participate in enrichment activities including attending the NEES Annual Meeting and the Young Researchers’ Symposium. Mentors, including university faculty, researchers, and graduate students, provide support and guidance to interns. Students are taught how to conduct independent research and how to participate effectively as a member of a research team.

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  • Image from the NSF-funded Network for Earthquake Engineering Simulation.
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