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SwRI adds two shaker tables for earthquake simulation

San Antonio, Texas --  October 8, 2002 -- Southwest Research Institute® (SwRI®) has added two shaker tables to augment its capabilities in earthquake simulation and other dynamic testing. The tables, designed by SwRI engineers, will be housed in the Institute's newly constructed 9,700-square-foot facility for Network Equipment/Building Systems (NEBS) and environmental testing, which will be fully operational in December.

The tables, one for vertical excitation and the other for horizontal, are each 7 feet by 7 feet in size and can test specimens that weigh up to 10,000 pounds. The horizontal table mass is 1,452 pounds, while the vertical table mass is 2,024 pounds. The tables also have longer strokes to allow for higher energy in lower frequencies, a characteristic of earthquake ground motions.

The new tables complement a third table, which is 4 feet by 4 feet, can test specimens weighing up to 6,000 pounds, and can be excited with simultaneous vertical and horizontal motion that is independent along each axis. Each of the three tables has immediate access to 16 data acquisition channels, with additional instrumentation available.

All three tables are contained in pits, with the table surface at floor level, allowing test specimens to be easily placed onto the surface for testing. Specimens can either be wheeled onto the table surface or mounted on the tables using an overhead crane.

"The newly completed facility will accommodate larger and more massive payloads and increased testing capacity, thus allowing greater flexibility for us to meet clients' needs," said Timothy A. Fey, manager of the Mechanical Sciences Section in SwRI's Mechanical and Materials Engineering Division.

The SwRI Mechanical Sciences Section is compliant with an internationally recognized quality standard, the ISO 9000:2000 system, and is working toward certification. Additionally, SwRI is one of five facilities certified as a Verizon Independent Testing Laboratory.

For more information about NEBS and structural dynamics testing, visit the web site at

For more information, contact Deborah Deffenbaugh, Communications, (210) 522-2256, Fax (210) 522-3547, PO Drawer 28510, San Antonio, Texas 78228-0510.

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