Project Description

2016 H.A. Krentz Research Award
Dr. Carlos Ventura
Department of Civil Engineering, University of British Columbia

Performance Based Seismic Design of Steel Bridges According to CHBDC S6-14

The latest release of the Canadian Highway Bridge Design Code S6-14 incorporates for the first time Performance Based Seismic Design (PBD) provisions for bridges in Canada. As this is a significant departure from the traditional Force-based design approach, practicing engineers are facing a number of challenges associated with the implementation of PBD for seismic design of bridges. Although the decision to incorporate PBD requirements on the bridge code is a step in the right direction, there are a number of “gaps” in S6-14 that may create confusion on how the performance criteria for different types of bridges can be met or demonstrated.

This study is concerned with the manner in which the performance criteria for seismic design of steel bridges can be met through the different types of analyses recommended by the code. The emphasis here is to apply the PBD methodology to different types of steel bridges and determine what are the necessary steps and additional analyses that need to be conducted by bridge designer to assess the performance criteria required by the new code. These studies will be useful for incorporating them into a set of practical guidelines for implementation of S6-14 to ultimately assist practicing bridge engineers to better understand the PBD design approach.


Dr. Carlos Ventura is currently the Director of the Earthquake Engineering Research Facility at UBC and has more than 30 years of experience as a structural engineer.

Dr. Ventura’s areas of research are in Structural Dynamics and Earthquake Engineering. He has done extensive experimental and analytical research on the seismic response of civil engineering structures. He has conducted extensive analyses of the response of instrumented structures, including some of the tallest steel frame buildings in Los Angeles and has developed various software packages for signal analysis and structural dynamics. He has been conducting shake table testing studies for more than twelve years. Some of these tests include tests of steel plate shear walls and slotted braced frames. Dr. Ventura has written over 300 technical papers and reports related to the seismic behaviour of structures.

>>Dr. Ventura

2016 H.A. Krentz Research Award

Carlos Ventura is the recipient of the H.A. Krentz Award for having the top ranked research topic for the 2016 Grant Competition. A gift of $5000 is given as part of this notable award. Dr. Ventura also received this award in 2011. Presenting the award is Mike Holleran, Chair, University Research Committee (R).