Seismic Certification of Equipment

Forell | Elsesser continues to lead the field in providing a diverse range of engineering services to achieve IBC/CBC certification equipment, including OSHPD OSP and OPM pre-certification. Our team is available to guide you through the steps of shake table testing and Special Certification. Our extensive experience with obtaining certifications and OSP’s for a wide range of manufacturers and equipment types allows us to streamline the process and develop testing plans which can minimize the number of tested units while maximizing the range of certified units. If seismic certification testing is new to you, we have enduring relationships with numerous shake table facilities around the country that are able to perform tests to the required AC 156 standards.

Forell | Elsesser was among the first engineering firms to achieve special seismic pre-certifications of mechanical and electrical equipment. Having a strong, long-standing, and close relationship with OSHPD officials has allowed Forell | Elsesser’s Seismic Pre-Certification team to remain at the forefront of this emerging market.

Seismic certification is rapidly gaining importance in today’s performance-based design environment. Seismic certification has clear applications beyond healthcare and beyond California, including emergency operations centers, schools, data centers, and critical manufacturing facilities.

Shake table testing for specific equipment installations including configurations with sliding seismic isolators is a service we provide as shown in the videos below.  These tests were performed at the Richmond Field Station test facility under the direction of Forell | Elsesser and EQX Global ( to compare the performance of standard computer server installations with the improved performance provided by local seismic isolation.

Services Provided for Seismic Certification

  • Development of OSP/OPM Certification Test Programs for Extensive Equipment Families
  • Oversight of Testing Accordance with AC 156
  • Develop Test Plans for AC 156 Testing to Maximize Range of Certified Units Using Minimum Number of Tested Units
  • Development of Finite Element (FEM) Analysis Models and Perform FEM Analysis to Substantiate Certification
  • Development of 3D Analysis Models and Perform Analyses to Validate Equipment Strengths Prior to Testing
  • Preparation of Equipment Certification Calculation Packages
  • Equipment Anchorage Calculations and Details
  • Development of Test Programs for OSHPD OSP Pre-Approval
  • Review of Testing Results and Preparation of AC 156 Reports for OSHPD
  • Communication with OSHPD and Attendance at Meetings with OSHPD Sacramento
  • Extensive Personal Relationships with OSHPD Sacramento Staff
  • Development and Oversight of IEEE-693 Testing
  • Single Source Contracting for Testing and Engineering Available with Multiple Test Labs

OSP Approvals