Narrator: This is Science Today. The University of California, San Diego is set to build the world's first outdoor shake table for full-scale structural earthquake safety tests. Once built, it will be the largest shake table in the country - with the ability to test structures as tall as 60 feet. Scott Ashford, a professor of structural engineering, explains the advantages of these facilities.Ashford: First, the sheer size of the facilities allows us to test full-scale foundations and use actual construction equipment to install them. This allows us to better replicate the real world.
Narrator: And the proximity of the shake table to a soil foundation and facility will allow for better systems testing.
Ashford: So we can put in a bridge foundation, a bridge abutment in the soil pits and then use the shake table to actually excite the foundation and the bridge deck to look at the behavior of the entire system, rather than just individual components.
Narrator: For Science Today, I'm Larissa Branin.