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Walterio Lopez and Rafael Sabelli Win 2008 T.R. Higgins Award
Posted by Geoff Weisenberger on December 4, 2007 at 4:36 PM.

Buckling-restrained braced frames (BRBFs) are an increasingly popular new steel seismic load resisting system that has demonstrated efficiency and exceptional seismic performance. Based on their groundbreaking paper “Seismic Design of Buckling-Restrained Braced Frames,” Walterio Lopez and Rafael Sabelli are being honored with the T.R. Higgins Lectureship Award. “BRBFs have the potential to significantly impact the structural steel market in seismic regions,” explained Louis F. Geschwindner, AISC’s vice president of Engineering and Research.


A new paper based on the work will be presented for the first time at the 2008 NASCC: The Steel Conference in Nashville April 2-5, 2008. For more information on the conference, visit


Their work has already been published by the Structural Steel Education Council and has helped BRBFs to be accepted in ANSI/AISC 341-05 Seismic Provisions for Structural Steel Buildings and in the International Building Code. Included in their paper is a detailed component design of two typical BRFB configurations and the development of testing protocols. In addition, a discussion of gusset-plate design and its influence on acceptable frame behavior is provided.


The T.R. Higgins Lectureship Award, which includes a $10,000 cash prize, is presented annually to an outstanding lecturer(s) and author(s) whose technical paper or papers are considered an outstanding contribution to the engineering literature on fabricated structural steel. For more information on the T.R. Higgins Award, visit

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