After the October 30 earthquake, Turkey's most comprehensive building and soil laboratory, established by the Izmir Metropolitan Municipality to make the city resistant to disasters, received TSE approval. Egeşehir Laboratory in Çiğli, which carries out studies at international standards, has become the center with the widest experimental scope throughout the country. President Soyer said, “We will continue to do whatever it takes to make everyone living in İzmir feel safe.”
The structure and soil laboratory established in Çiğli by the Izmir Metropolitan Municipality, which has implemented Turkey's most comprehensive earthquake research and risk reduction projects, has been approved by the Turkish Standards Institute (TSE). In line with the vision of Izmir Metropolitan Municipality Mayor Tunç Soyer to make Izmir resilient to disasters, following the 30 October earthquake, the Metropolitan Municipality subsidiary Egeşehir A.Ş. Established within the body of Egeşehir Laboratory, it became the center with the widest scope of experimentation among the laboratories with the "Experiment Laboratory Approval Certificate" given by TSE. The center, which is the only laboratory to receive the approval of “46 separate experiments and tests can be carried out” that will be needed in concrete, rock and soil investigations, is aimed to set an example for Turkey.
“We work with a common mind”
Stating that the center was established with the infrastructure that can meet the national and international standards for the tests and tests needed in the building safety and soil investigations of the buildings in İzmir, President Tunç Soyer said, “We established the Earthquake Risk Management and Urban Improvement Department before the 30 October İzmir earthquake. 10 days after the earthquake, we organized the 'İzmir Earthquake Common Mind Meeting' with the participation of academicians from various universities, representatives of stakeholder institutions and organizations in disaster management, district municipalities, professional chambers and non-governmental organizations. We have allocated 200 million TL from our budget for earthquake studies by forming the Disaster Science Board, which includes scientists who are experts in earthquake and disaster in Turkey. We will continue to do whatever it takes to make everyone living in Izmir feel safe.” Stating that they are working with a common mind to build a resilient city, Soyer said, "Egeşehir Laboratory will contribute to making projects in cooperation with all institutions and universities, training new experts and developing experimental methods."
“We are in a position to do everything related to the health of the building”
Egesehir A.S. General Manager Ekrem Tükenmez said, “The October 30 earthquake showed us that there is a need for infrastructure for tests, experiments and analyzes required in field studies. At the Common Mind Meeting after the earthquake, suggestions such as making a building inventory, reviewing the plans, examining the fault lines and conducting microzonation studies were made. To do all this, infrastructure was needed. Thereupon, we established a laboratory that will carry out risk analysis for existing buildings in İzmir and that can meet national and international standards for ground-related tests and experiments. We are now in a position to perform 46 different experiments. We can do everything related to building health, including risky building detection. The laboratory also has the technical infrastructure for soil-related rock and soil experiments and tests. There are places in nature that we cannot see. We can comment on the surface, but there is also an area we do not know, which we call the underground. This center was designed to get to know these areas that we cannot see at work," he said. Ekrem Tükenmez said that there is no example of a laboratory in this scope in Turkey, where both risky structure detection and ground surveys can be carried out on a large area scale, and said, "This center has the capacity to turn into an institute and train scientists."
Strength parameters are detected
Egeşehir Laboratory Concrete Laboratory Department Manager and civil engineer Ulaş Bağcı touched upon how the building risk analyzes are carried out and said, “We perform compressive strength tests with core samples taken from the columns of buildings that are classified as risky structures. Then we move on to risk detection using analysis programs. Therefore, experiments and tests are carried out to determine soil conditions, local soil classification, classification of soil and rock types, soil profiles, swelling-settlement and bearing capacity.
Gözde Nazlı Kalbaz, Geology Engineer and Head of the Ground Rock Laboratory Department, said, “Two-stage experiments are carried out on samples that represent the land conditions. In the first stage, we define the physical properties of the soil, namely the material. In the second stage, we determine the strength parameters with the devices and direct these parameters to the relevant people. They are also completing the project phase," he said.
What tests are done in the lab?
The laboratory was equipped with devices and equipment to meet the test and analysis needs required for risky structure detection and ground surveys. In the center, tests such as non-destructive-rebound tests, compressive strength, on-site determination of concrete compressive strength, coring and inspection and compressive strength, determination of the density of hardened concrete are carried out for the detection of risky structures.
In addition, within the scope of soil tests, three-axis UU test, direct shear, conventional and automatic consolidation, consistency limits, particle size distribution, specific gravity and conical penetration, as well as fully automatic and computer-controlled resonant column and helical shear, static triaxial compressive strength and consolidation , swelling experiments are carried out. With the “resonant column spiral shear test device” in the laboratory, the shear stiffness, strength and earthquake damping properties of soils during earthquakes are directly measured on samples, and with these data, the behavior of soils during earthquakes such as amplification of ground motion and liquefaction becomes more sensitive.