Clean Challenge semi-finalist Dr. Peter Dusicka, Professor, Civil & Environmental Engineering, advanced to the next round of the competition with his buckling restrained brace (BRB) technology. BRBs are the standard-bearers in today's seismic retrofitting technology; in the event of an earthquake, not only do they save lives, they save buildings by absorbing the waves of energy produced by the earth's shaking. Outfitting buildings with BRBs could save cities billions in reconstruction costs.
One problem with current BRB designs is that they are massive, weighing tons, and given their size, they often require the disruption of building occupancy during installation. Another problem with current BRB designs is that they are constructed with corrosive materials, which makes them impractical in exposed structures like parking garages and bridges. Dr. Dusicka's patent-protected, ultra-light weight and corrosion resistant BRB design solves both these problems, making this life- and structure-saving technology easy to install and deploy in exposed conditions.
With development funds from the Clean Challenge, Dr. Dusicka plans to build and test prototypes of his BRB design to prove the concept of the technology in terms of constructability and seismic performance. Learn more about Dr. Dusicka's BRB design by reading the profile, "Shaking up Seismic Retrofitting."
Authored by Shaun McGillis
Posted May 31, 2013