Effect of Soil-Structure Interaction on Nonlinear Dynamic Response of Reinforced Concrete Structures

Christos Mourlas, Neo Khabele, Hussein A. Bark, Dimitris Karamitros, Francesca Taddei, George Markou (Lead / Corresponding author), Manolis Papadrakakis

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17 Citations (Scopus)
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Investigating the nonlinear dynamic response of reinforced concrete (RC) structures is of significant importance in understanding the expected behavior of these structures under dynamic loading. This becomes more crucial during the design of new or the assessment of the existing RC structures that are located in seismically active areas. The numerical simulation of this problem through the use of detailed 3D modeling is still a subject that has not been investigated thoroughly due to the significant challenges related to numerical instabilities and excessive computational demand, especially when the soil–structure interaction (SSI) phenomenon is accounted for. This study aims at presenting a nonlinear simulation tool to investigate this numerically cumbersome problem in order to provide further inside into the SSI effect on RC structures under nonlinear dynamic loading conditions. A detailed 3D numerical model of full-scale RC structures considering the SSI effect through modeling the nonlinear frame and soil domain is performed and discussed herein. The constructed models are subjected to dynamic loading conditions and an elaborate investigation is presented considering different type of structures, material properties of soil domains and depths. The RC structures and the soil domains are modeled through 8-noded hexahedral isoparametric elements, where the steel bar reinforcement of concrete is modeled as embedded beam and truss finite elements. The Ramberg–Osgood constitutive law was used for modeling the soil domain. It was shown that the SSI effect can significantly increase the flexibility of the system, altering the nonlinear dynamic response of the RC frames causing local damages that are not observed when the fixed-base model is analyzed. Furthermore, it was found that the structures founded on soft soil developed larger base-shear compared to the fixed-base model which is attributed to resonance phenomena connected to the SSI effect and the imposed accelerograms.
Original languageEnglish
Article number2041013
JournalInternational Journal of Structural Stability and Dynamics
Issue number13
Early online date14 Oct 2020
Publication statusPublished - 2020


  • Nonlinear dynamic analysis
  • soil-structure interaction
  • reinforced concrete structures
  • seismic assessment
  • stability of structures


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