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Vibration of suspended solid-timber slabs without intermediate support: assessment for human comfort


Robertson, M and Holloway, D and Taoum, A, Vibration of suspended solid-timber slabs without intermediate support: assessment for human comfort, Australian Journal of Structural Engineering, 19, (4) pp. 266-278. ISSN 1328-7982 (2018) [Refereed Article]

Copyright Statement

2018 Engineers Australia

DOI: doi:10.1080/13287982.2018.1513783


Mass timber flooring is an effective use of low-grade timber. However, lightweight, unsupported, timber slabs are particularly susceptible to vibrations in the frequency range that causes discomfort to occupants. The purpose of this investigation is to determine whether panelised solid timber slabs vibrate within acceptable standards for human comfort. The first three natural frequencies and associated mode shapes of five 4.4 m 0.28 m 0.09 m nail laminated, MGP10 Radiata Pine test panels were investigated using accelerometers to validate and calibrate a finite element model in Ansys Workbench. The finite element model was then extended to study three slabs spanning 4.4 m, with widths in the range 4.28.4 m. Marginally acceptable levels were achieved by the thinnest slab tested (90 mm), however with increased slab depth, the recommended limits are easily satisfied. These conclusions are shown likely to be conservative when furnishings and fittings are accounted for. As results are dominated by the stiff dimension, conclusions can be extrapolated to wider slabs, thus this represents a viable method of construction for slabs of any width spanning 4.4 m.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:vibration, human comfort, nail-laminated, mass-timber, panels, floor slab
Research Division:Engineering
Research Group:Civil engineering
Research Field:Structural engineering
Objective Division:Construction
Objective Group:Construction materials performance and processes
Objective Field:Metals
UTAS Author:Robertson, M (Mr Matthew Robertson)
UTAS Author:Holloway, D (Associate Professor Damien Holloway)
UTAS Author:Taoum, A (Dr Assaad Taoum)
ID Code:128394
Year Published:2018
Web of Science® Times Cited:3
Deposited By:Information and Communication Technology
Deposited On:2018-09-18
Last Modified:2019-02-26

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