Replaceable links with gusseted brace joints for eccentrically braced frames

Bozkurt M. B. , Topkaya C.

SOIL DYNAMICS AND EARTHQUAKE ENGINEERING, vol.115, pp.305-318, 2018 (Journal Indexed in SCI) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 115
  • Publication Date: 2018
  • Doi Number: 10.1016/j.soildyn.2018.08.035
  • Page Numbers: pp.305-318
  • Keywords: Eccentrically braced frame, Steel, Replaceable link, Gusset plate, Experimental testing, SEISMIC BEHAVIOR, SHEAR LINKS, OVERSTRENGTH


Various replaceable link details were developed for use in steel eccentrically braced frames (EBFs) during the past decade. These details include but are not limited to bolted flush end-plated links, bolted extended end-plated links, web connected replaceable links, and bolted flange- and web-spliced links. Another detail which is based on splicing the beam outside the link and braces was recently proposed by the authors. The performance of this detail when used with directly connected braces was studied through experimental testing and acceptable performance was demonstrated. In practice gusseted attachments are widely used for connecting the braces to the beams in EBF systems. In this paper, the proposed detail by the authors is extended to replaceable links with gusseted brace attachments. The use of gusset plates enables to tailor the geometry of the replaceable link and allows different details to be developed. Three replaceable link details are proposed herein. The first detail employs standard gusset plated detail where splicing the beam is performed outside the connection region. The second detail develops a more compact replaceable link by connecting the beam to the link within the brace connection panel. The third detail is a pin connected detail where minimal amounts of bending moments are transferred to the brace member. The proposed details are studied by conducting nine nearly full-scale EBF tests under quasi static loading. The type of replaceable link, link length ratio, connection type, gap size of splice connections, demand-to-capacity ratio of members are considered as the prime variables. The inelastic rotation capacity provided by the replaceable links satisfied the requirements of the AISC Seismic Provisions for Structural Steel Buildings (AISC341-16). The links failed mainly due to fracture of the link web or flange. No failures were observed in the gusseted joints demonstrating the potential of the proposed details.