4: Out-of-plane offsets

Discontinuities in a lateral-force-resistance path such as out-of-plane offsets of the vertical elements

Offset Shear walls

Offset Shear walls

5: Nonparallel systems

The vertical lateral-force-resisting elements are not parallel to or symmetric about the major orthogonal axes of the lateral-force-resisting system

The NEHRP Provisions assume significant amounts of nonlinear behavior will occur under design level events. The extent of nonlinear behavior that may occur is dependent on the structural systems employed in resisting earthquake forces, the configuration of these systems, and the extent that the structural systems are detailed for ductile behavior under large cyclic inelastic deformation. The NEHRP Provisions may therefore be thought to consist of two component parts:

• One part relates to specification of the required design strength and stiffness of the structural system.

• The second part relates to issues of structural detailing.

TABLE 19.2 NEHRP 2000 Vertical Structural Irregularities

1: Stiffness irregularity — soft story

(1a) A soft story is one in which the lateral stiffness is less than 70% of that in the story above or less than 80% of the average stiffness of the three stories above. (1b) An extreme soft story is for ratios of less than 60% or less than 70%, respectively

2: Weight (mass) irregularity

Mass irregularity exists where the effective mass of any story is more than 150% of the effective mass of an adjacent story. A roof that is lighter than the floor below need not be considered

3: Vertical geometric irregularity

Vertical geometric irregularity exists where the horizontal dimension of the lateral-force-resisting system in any story is more than 130% of that in an adjacent story

4: In-plane discontinuity in vertical lateral-force-resisting elements

An in-plane offset of the lateral-force-resisting elements greater than the length of those elements or a reduction in stiffness of the resisting elements in the story below


5: Discontinuity in capacity — weak story

A weak story is one in which the story lateral strength is less than 80% of that in the story above. The story strength is the total strength of all seismic-resisting elements sharing the story shear for the direction under consideration

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For this second part, the NEHRP Provisions adopt, with modification, design standards and specifications developed by industry groups such as the American Concrete Institute or the American Institute of Steel Construction. This second part of the NEHRP Provisions is not discussed in this chapter, but is covered in detail in each of the following chapters, which treat the individual structural materials.

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