Design of a Modular Program for Transient Nonlinear Analysis of Large 3-D Building Structures
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This report describes the plans for a computer modeling and analysis system for transient fully nonlinear seismic analysis of large buildings. The emphasis is on modeling the buildings at a "macro" level, i.e., modeling in terms of elements which correspond to structural members such as beams, shear walls, connections, etc. It is recognized that the research needs are vast with advances required in geometric modeling, finite-element modeling, material modeling, nonlinear analysis, and interactive-adaptive user interface schemes. Further, the magnitude of the computational problem in terms of computer memory and solution time requires access to supercomputing or some parallel processing option, preferably with a graphical "window" for monitoring the computations. It is felt that coordination and cooperation among different research groups is essential to avoid duplication of effort and to accelerate research. With this objective in mind, a shareable platform or testbed computer program is proposed and is currently under initial development at Cornell University. A high degree of modularity is a central objective in the development of this program to permit expansion, porting, and modification over its useful life. One of the keys to modularity is the availability of an efficient data management system, which can manage data associated with the relationships among the different components of the building, their attributes, and the methods of manipulating the attributes.