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RE: Steel Moment Frames in Seismic Zone 0

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>I am preparing to design a 4 story moment
>frame office building on the east coast
>(seismic zone 0) and was wondering what
>other folks have been doing.  
>What are some other engineers in this area
>requiring?  What is standard practice?

It all depends upon the R factor you select (or are permitted to select in
the applicable building code). If the soil is bad or the importance factor
drives you to a higher seismic performance category, you may have to use a
system from the AISC Seismic Provisions (SMF, IMF, OMF). Otherwise, you will
likely be permitted to choose R=3 and design and construct the building
according to the requirements in the AISC Specification for Structural Steel
Buildings without the additional requirements in the AISC Seismic
Provisions. If you choose to take R greater than 3, you must meet the
requirements that correspond to the higher R in the AISC Seismic Provisions.

R=3 systems are generally less expensive than systems with higher R factors.
R=3 as described above gets you a system of normal ductility that will
remain nominally elastic for the design seismic forces. For moment frames,
this can be achieved using the basic moment connections shown in the AISC
Manual, such as flange plates, end plates, and welded flanges. You can also
consider flexible moment connections and PR moment connections if you wish.


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