Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat
A Comprehensive Study on Tall Building Damping Technologies
Project Start: May 2015
Anticipated Project Completion: October 2017
Funding Sponsor: Bouygues Construction
Principal Investigator: Dario Trabucco, CTBUH
Funding Sponsor
The CTBUH research project, “A Study on the Damping Technologies Available for Tall Buildings: Comfort and Safety,” has received $230,000 in funding from Bouygues Construction to embark on an ambitious 18 month comprehensive study. The research activity will be summarized in a CTBUH Technical Guide. The publication will become a primary reference text that guides designers in choosing the most suitable damping systems for their projects. The guide will also provide recommendations on the use of damping systems.

Project Milestones
2015, October: Second Meeting
2015, May: CTBUH Research Manager and Building Design Team Tour Allianz Project
2015, May: First Meeting
2015, March: Project Announcement

Tall buildings are now being built in all major cities around the world. As such, tall buildings must withstand a variety of external forces. Many cities (e.g., San Francisco, Tokyo, and Taipei) are located in seismic zones, while strong winds can occur in areas subject to typhoons and hurricanes, but also in less predictable places due to unique weather conditions. Additionally, global warming and climate change may be causing extreme winds to occur in areas that have never experienced hurricanes in the past.

The increased height and slenderness of tall buildings, together with their reduced weight via structural optimization, is causing newer buildings to be more prone to structural vibrations and resonance, which can cause discomfort, damage, and eventually, structural failure.

Damping systems were introduced some 50 years ago to mitigate vibrations in tall slender structures and their use has been extended to tall buildings since the 1980s in retrofits to existing buildings (e.g., John Hancock Tower, Boston) or in new constructions (e.g., Citicorp, New York; One Canada Square, London; Yokohama Landmark Tower, Yokohama).
A vast amount of literature exists on the topic, mostly composed of papers published in research journals that examine detailed issues in the design, function, and effects of tall building dampers. Because of the fragmentation of sources, knowledge in the field is inaccessible by people who are interested in the topic, and remains restricted to highly-specialized experts.

The present research aims at creating a comprehensive publication summarizing the state-of-the-art utility of damping systems in tall buildings.

Tuned mass wind damper located in Taipei 101
With the help and support of key researchers and practitioners in the field, this research will produce a comprehensive study of the damping technologies available for tall buildings, describing their function and relationship to other building components.

This undertaking represents yet another CTBUH organizational member-funded research project, indicating the unmatched capacity of the Council to explore the most intricate aspects of tall building design.

Contact Information
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