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Seismic Design of Solar Arrays on Flat Roofs

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Overview

Photovoltaic (PV) arrays are increasingly common on rooftops of buildings with flat or low-slope roofs. While prescriptive building code provisions specify that nonstructural components be “positively fastened” to the structure, the solar industry is in need of a method for demonstrating the adequacy of unattached or “ballast-only” arrays to resist seismic shaking on nearly flat roofs.

This web seminar discusses guidelines, developed by the Structural Engineers Association of California (SEAOC) Photovoltaic Systems Committee in 2012 to address seismic design of such arrays and summarizes the guidelines, commonly referred to as SEAOC PV1, including key technical aspects that have been highlighted as the guidelines are coming into more widespread use.

The first part of the web seminar is presented by Karl Telleen, who provides an overview of the guidelines developed by SEAOC. The guidelines include a prescriptive design approach, as well as the option for alternative approaches using analysis or testing. The second part of the seminar is presented by Andreas Schellenberg, who discusses the results of nonlinear response history analyses and shake table testing of solar arrays. 

Details
Speakers:
Karl Telleen, SE, and Andreas Schellenberg, PE, PhD
Duration:
115 mins
Video
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Speaker Bios

Karl Telleen is a Senior Engineer with Maffei Structural Engineering in Oakland, California. He has ten years of experience, including work on a range of project types, such as design of new steel and concrete structures, seismic evaluation and retrofit of existing buildings, seismic peer review of high-rise buildings, and design and analysis of solar arrays subjected to wind and seismic forces. He is a member of the SEAOC Solar Photovoltaic Systems Committee and has led development of design examples for SEAOC. Karl earned his B.S.E. form Princeton University and M.S. from Stanford University.

Andreas Schellenberg is a consulting engineer specializing in numerical analysis and experimental testing of structures. His experience includes analysis, design, and testing of solar arrays subjected to wind and seismic forces, as well as research, design, and experimental testing of base and intermediate-level isolated structures. For the solar industry, Andreas led the shake table testing program to investigate the behavior of sliding and energy dissipating systems, which contributed to the technical basis for the SEAOC PV1 guidelines. He has also performed nonlinear wind response history analyses using pressure data from wind tunnel tests. Andreas earned his BS and MS from ETH Zurich, Switzerland, and his PhD from UC Berkeley.

Karl Telleen is a Senior Engineer with Maffei Structural Engineering in Oakland, California. He has ten years of experience, including work on a range of project types, such as design of new steel and concrete structures, seismic evaluation and retrofit of existing buildings, seismic peer review of high-rise buildings, and design and analysis of solar arrays subjected to wind and seismic forces. He is a member of the SEAOC Solar Photovoltaic Systems Committee and has led development of design examples for SEAOC. Karl earned his B.S.E. form Princeton University and M.S. from Stanford University.

Andreas Schellenberg is a consulting engineer specializing in numerical analysis and experimental testing of structures. His experience includes analysis, design, and testing of solar arrays subjected to wind and seismic forces, as well as research, design, and experimental testing of base and intermediate-level isolated structures. For the solar industry, Andreas led the shake table testing program to investigate the behavior of sliding and energy dissipating systems, which contributed to the technical basis for the SEAOC PV1 guidelines. He has also performed nonlinear wind response history analyses using pressure data from wind tunnel tests. Andreas earned his BS and MS from ETH Zurich, Switzerland, and his PhD from UC Berkeley.

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