Analysis of crosswind fatigue of wind-excited structures with nonlinear aerodynamic damping

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This study addresses crosswind fatigue analysis of wind-excited flexible structures at the vicinity of vortex lock-in speed where the nonlinear aerodynamic damping effect is significant. The nonlinear aerodynamic damping is modeled as a polynomial function of time-varying displacement or velocity of vibration. The crosswind response is a narrow-band hardening non-Gaussian process with a reduced peak factor and having a distribution of vibration amplitude different from Rayleigh distribution. Analytical solutions of cycle number and fatigue damage are derived and their accuracy is validated through comparison with rainflow cycle counting method using simulated response time histories. A correction factor as a function of response kurtosis is also introduced that facilitates the calculation of non-Gaussian fatigue damage from the Gaussian fatigue prediction. The effectiveness and accuracy of the proposed framework are illustrated by crosswind responses of a squared tall building and a two-dimensional structural section model, and by full-scale vibration measurement data of a traffic-signal-support-structure. This study provides an improved estimation of crosswind fatigue of wind-excited flexible structures with a consideration of hardening non-Gaussian response character.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)145-156
Number of pages12
JournalEngineering Structures
StatePublished - Sep 1 2014


  • Crosswind response
  • Non-Gaussian fatigue
  • Nonlinear aerodynamic damping
  • Rainflow cycle counting method
  • Spectral method
  • Tall building
  • Vortex-induced vibration
  • Wind loads


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