Bull Earthquake Eng (2014) 12:1657–1677
DOI 10.1007/s10518-013-9567-8
Seismic performance evaluation of plasterboard
partitions via shake table tests
Gennaro Magliulo · Crescenzo Petrone · Vittorio Capozzi ·
Giuseppe Maddaloni · Pauline Lopez · Gaetano Manfredi
Received: 8 February 2013 / Accepted: 29 November 2013 / Published online: 8 December 2013
© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2013
Abstract The damage of nonstructural components represents the largest contribution to the
economic loss caused by an earthquake. Since nonstructural components are not amenable
to traditional structural analysis, full-scale experimental testing is crucial to understand their
behaviour under earthquake. For this reason, shaking table tests are performed to investigate
the seismic behaviour of plasterboard partitions. A steel test frame is properly designed in
order to simulate the seismic effects at a generic building storey. The tests are performed
shaking the table simultaneously in both horizontal directions. To investigate a wide range of
interstorey drift demand and seismic damage, the shakes are performed scaling the accelero-
grams at eleven different intensity levels. The tested plasterboard partitions from Siniat exhibit
a good seismic behaviour, both in their own plane and out of plane, showing limited damage
up to 1.1 % interstorey drift ratio. The correlation between the dynamic characteristics of the
test setup and the recorded damage is evidenced. Finally, an interesting comparison between
the experimental results and the analytical model is also performed.
Keywords Nonstructural components · Dynamic identification · Plasterboard partitions ·
Seismic performance · Shake table test · Infilled frame
1 Introduction
In the last years, the scientific community research effort is moving towards the investigation
of the seismic behaviour of nonstructural components. Nonstructural elements are those sys-
G. Magliulo (B) · C. Petrone · V. Capozzi · G. Manfredi
Department of Structures for Engineering and Architecture (DIST),
University of Naples Federico II, via Claudio, 21, 80125 Naples, Italy
e-mail: gmagliul@unina.it
G. Maddaloni
Department of Technology, University of Naples Parthenope, Naples, Italy
P. Lopez
Siniat, Direction Innovation and R&D, Avignon, France
1658 Bull Earthquake Eng (2014) 12:1657–1677
tems and components attached to the floors, roof and walls of a building or industrial facility
that are not part of the main load-bearing structural system, but may also be subjected to
large seismic actions (Villaverde 1997). The paper deals with plasterboard partition systems,
certainly belonging to nonstructural components category.
The seismic performance of nonstructural elements is strongly inserted in the framework of
the “Performance-based earthquake engineering” (Bertero and Bertero 2002). According to
this approach, the global seismic performance is defined upon the behaviour of both structural
and non