Low Frequency Vibration Approach for Assessing Performance of Wood Floor Systems1

Xiping Wang, Robert J. Ross, Michael O. Hunt, John R. Erickson, John W. Forsman


The primary means of inspecting buildings and other structures is to evaluate each structure member individually. This is a time-consuming and expensive process, particularly if sheathing or other covering materials must be removed to access the structural members. The objective of this study was to determine if a low frequency vibration method could be used to effectively assess the structural performance of wood floors as component systems. Twelve wood floors were constructed with solid sawn wood joists in the laboratory and tested with both vibration and static load methods. The results indicated that the forced vibration method was capable of measuring the fundamental natural frequency (bending mode) of the wood floors investigated. An analytical model derived from the flexural beam theory was found to fit the physics of the floor structures and can be used to correlate natural frequency to section modulus (EI product) of the floor systems.


Vibration;natural frequency;stiffness;wood floor

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