Company History

Earthquake damage picture taken by HB-Risk team members Dustin Cook and Katie Fitzgerald during their post-earthquake reconnaissance the day of the 2014 South Napa earthquake in California (taken August 24, 2014).

Earthquake damage picture taken by HB-Risk team members Dustin Cook and Katie Fitzgerald during their post-earthquake reconnaissance the day of the 2014 South Napa earthquake in California (taken August 24, 2014).

Jack Baker and Curt Haselton have worked together for over a decade on research to support and advance our structural engineering profession.

These activities have included fundamental research projects, technology transfer projects with the Applied Technology Council (including ATC-58), and consulting projects to utilize research tools in the real world.

Preparations for testing a full-scale RC column specimen at the MAST lab in Minnesota.  HB-Risk Co-Founder Curt Haselton is Co-PI on this NSF-NEES project.

Preparations for testing a full-scale RC column specimen at the MAST lab in Minnesota. HB-Risk Co-Founder Curt Haselton is Co-PI on this NSF-NEES project.

Through this work, we observed that advanced design and assessment methods are often difficult to implement in practice. This difficulty often arises because research calculations and software cannot keep up with the rapid pace of work in a design office. Given our experience in performance-based engineering research and software development, we saw a chance to address this problem.

We created the Haselton Baker Risk Group in 2014 to produce software that meets the needs of cutting-edge engineering design professionals and enables engineers to quickly implement advanced design and assessment methods into their practice. When equipped with the tools to comprehensively assess performance of buildings, we believe that engineers will be able to design more resilient projects and communities.

Our Team

Curt Haselton, Ph.D., P.E. Co-Founder and CEO

Curt Haselton, Ph.D., P.E. Co-Founder and CEO

Curt is a leader in the field of structural earthquake engineering, with recent work focusing on building code development, building collapse safety assessments, and earthquake damage and loss estimation. In addition to his role as Co-Founder and CEO of HB Risk, he is a Professor and Department Chair in Civil Engineering at California State University, Chico . He received his Ph.D. in Structural Engineering from Stanford University in 2006. Among his awards, Curt received the 2013 Shah Family Innovation Prize from the Earthquake Engineering Research Institute , honoring an individual under the age of 35 for creativity, innovation and an entrepreneurial spirit in earthquake risk mitigation and management.

Jack Baker, Ph.D. Co-Founder

Jack Baker, Ph.D. Co-Founder

Jack is a leader in the field of structural reliability and earthquake loss estimation. In addition to his role as Co-Founder of HB Risk, he is an Associate Professor in the department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Stanford University. He received his Ph.D. in Structural Engineering from Stanford University in 2005, where he also earned M.S. degrees in Statistics and Structural Engineering. Among his awards, Jack received the Shah Family Innovation Prize in 2009 from the Earthquake Engineering Research Institute. He has industry experience in seismic hazard assessment, ground motion selection, probabilistic risk assessment, and modeling of catastrophe losses for insurance and reinsurance companies.

Careers

We are actively building our SP3 development team. If interested in working on this exciting project, and as part of a great team, please send a resume to support@hbrisk.com.

News

Seismic Performance Prediction Program Logo Jun 27 2018

HB-Risk partnered with the University of Colorado, Boulder to benchmark and validate seismic vulnerability curves developed using the FEMA P-58 methodology with the SP3-RiskModel, and automations through the Risk Model Databases and Engines (with more information on the Risk Model available here. The executive summary of the results of this project is available here.

Seismic Performance Prediction Program Logo Jun 26 2018

SP3-SiteHazards Version 1.2 was released with the following updates. Improved readability and estimated values for Liquefaction, Landslide, Tsunami Inundation Zone, and Alquist Priolo Fault Zone. Detailed soil boring data maps for nearby sites is now included, showing color-coded Vs30 values. The prior event Shake Maps now provide quantitative site-specific mapped shaking values for PGA, PGV, Sa (T = 0.3s) and Sa (T= 1.0s). Ground shaking hazards are now reported for Site Classes D, B/C, and your specified site class (based on Vs30). Maps have been updated to reflect refinements of the California Geological Survey Maps released in February 2018!

Seismic Performance Prediction Program Logo Jun 25 2018

HB-Risk exhibited at the 11th National Conference on Earthquake Engineering in Los Angeles, June 25th- 29th and presented at several sessions.

Seismic Performance Prediction Program Logo Jun 21 2018

HB-Risk announced the release of the new SP3-RiskModel software. This new software enables SP3 technology to be leveraged for every project, rather than only large and special projects. To accomplish this, the SP3-RiskModel provides extensive automation of the steps of the FEMA P-58 analysis process, to quickly produce a high-fidelity building- and site-specific seismic risk assessment. The SP3-RiskModel can be run with minimal inventory-type information (building location, type, etc.) and the analysis can refined using an extensive list of secondary modifiers when more information is available. This software is tailored for preliminary resilient design, advanced due-diligence assessments, and insurance risk applications. The early-adopter group of companies is forming now. These companies will get first access to the software, and the ability to guide further feature development. More information on the SP3-RiskModel can be found here.

Seismic Performance Prediction Program Logo Jun 07 2018

HB-Risk hosted another online webinar in our SP3 How-To Webinar Series. This webinar outlined the process for using SP3-Design to complete a building-specific risk evaluation for a Wood Light Frame (WLF) building. This process takes advantage of the new SP3 Structural Response Prediction Engine, which predicts nonlinear structural responses of the building without needing to create a structural model. This webinar was not recorded but will be offered again in the future.

Seismic Performance Prediction Program Logo Apr 25 2018

HB-Risk debuted a new SP3 How-to Webinar Series with the SP3-Design Primer webinar. This webinar walked through the important steps in an SP3 assessment; with emphasis was on how to use SP3-Design most efficiently, understanding how inputs affect the analysis, and how to examine results. This webinar was not recorded but will be offered again in the future.

Seismic Performance Prediction Program Logo Apr 18 2018

HB-Risk exhibited at the Structures Congress in Fort Worth, April 18th – 25th. Haselton Baker Risk Group research engineers co-authored the paper, which was presented at the conference by Dr. David (Jared) DeBock, CSU Chico and Michael Valley, Magnusson Klemencic Associates. This study evaluated ASCE/SEI 7 design requirements for seismic-induced torsion in buildings, using collapse resistance as the primary metrics.

Seismic Performance Prediction Program Logo Apr 12 2018

The HB-Risk research engineers exhibited for the first time at NASCC: The Steel Conference in Baltimore, April 11th – 18th and presented at two workshops.

Quantify the Performance of Structural Steel Moment Frames Using Seismic Loss Assessment Tools

Seismically resilient building design may be achieved through damage prevention or directing damage into replaceable fuse components, allowing energy dissipation and rapid repair. While many structural steel systems do the former, other new technologies do the latter. One example is the Simpson Strong-Tie Strong Frame® Special Moment Frame with their Yield-Link® structural fuse technology. This session examined the performance of various types of steel frames, including a focus on the Simpson Strong-Tie Strong Frame® SMF.

Guidelines for Resilient Design on CoreBrace Buckling Restrained Brace Frames (BRBFs)

BRBF buildings are popular in seismic regions due to their ductility and energy dissipation. We look forward to an age where we ask more of our buildings: total building resilience. Resilience not only includes safety, but also limits damage, repair cost and business disruption. To achieve resilient performance, peak drift, peak floor acceleration, and residual drift must be controlled. In this session they examined the design of resilient BRBF buildings.

Seismic Performance Prediction Program Logo Apr 11 2018

HB-Risk announced the new SP3-SiteHazards tool. This tool was created following SP3 client requests and can be used to create a convenient PDF report that documents the hazard and site-stability information for a project site. This tool compiles data from hundreds of sources to provide mapping of hazards from ground shaking, liquefaction, landslide, tsunami, Alquist Priolo Zones, prior event ShakeMaps, and soil type mapping information for the site. The data sets are extensive and include data for most seismic regions across the United States. This tool was designed for use by providers of quality due-diligence seismic risk assessments but can be used for any application where site-stability information is needed. Early-adopter clients are already using this new SP3-SiteHazards tool in their projects and we look forward to seeing the impact that this tool can have in our industry.

Seismic Performance Prediction Program Logo Mar 12 2018

Structure Magazine published an article by Mr. Ronald Hamburger and Haselton Baker Risk Group Founders Dr. Curt Haselton and Dr. Jack Baker. This article, “Resilient Design and Risk Assessment using FEMA P-58 Analysis”, presents the FEMA P-58 Method, highlights some of the recent updates to the Method, and presents case studies detailing how the Method is being used now to design resilient buildings. You can read the article here.

Seismic Performance Prediction Program Logo Feb 22 2018

Dr. Haselton participated in the California Earthquake Authority Research Forum “Innovation in Earthquake Risk Assessment: How Technology is Changing the Industry.” Specifically Dr. Haselton sat as a panel member for the “Role and Practical Application of Technology in Assessing Expected Performance of Houses”; he shared how SP3 can be used in the assessment of wood light-frame buildings and the new SP3 Building-Specific Risk Model. You can find the presentation for the CEA Forum here.

Seismic Performance Prediction Program Logo Feb 13 2018

Dr. Haselton and the HB Risk team presented a “White Paper on Expected Seismic Performance of New Building-Code-Compliant Buildings in California.” This paper contrasts the performance of code-compliant buildings at different locations in California showing that new buildings in California are safe but disposable. This paper also contrasts code-compliant building performance with resiliently designed buildings. You can view the white paper here.

Seismic Performance Prediction Program Logo Dec 12 2017

In the 5th and final installment in our webinar series Dr. Haselton and Edward Almeter presented a webinar looking in more detail at risk assessment of buckling-restrained braced-frame (BRBF) buildings. This webinar summarized the research and the new SP3 technologies stemming from this project, which now enable more advance assessment and resilient design of BRBF buildings. This technology has just been released and is not yet in the online SP3 system, so if you have a BRBF project and you want to leverage this new technology now, please contact the SP3 team and we would be happy to work with you on your project. You can watch the webinar here or view the slides from the webinar here.

Seismic Performance Prediction Program Logo Nov 30 2017

In the 4th installment in our webinar series, Dr. Debock and Dustin Cook presented a webinar on SP3 Building-Specific Risk Assessment for wood light-frame, this work included additions to the SP3 Structural Response Prediction Engine, the SP3 Structural Design and Models Databases, and the SP3 Dynamic Structural Properties Engine. We are excited that risk assessment for this important and prevalent building type is now enabled in the SP3 Building-Specific Risk Model; this has already been implemented into the online version of SP3, and we have been excited to see this new WLF risk assessment method already being used by SP3 clients on their projects. You can watch the webinar here or view the slides from the webinar here.

Seismic Performance Prediction Program Logo Nov 14 2017

Continuing our webinar series, on November 14th Haselton Baker Risk Group together with Dr. Koliou and Prof. Lawson presented a webinar on the SP3 Building-Specific Risk Assessment for Tilt-up Buildings. This webinar discusses building-specific tilt-up risk evaluation within the SP3 Building-Specific Risk Model, including additions to the SP3 Structural Response Prediction Engine, the SP3 Fragility Database, the SP3 Building Code Design Database, and the SP3 Dynamic Structural Properties Engine. You can watch the webinar here or view the slides from the webinar here.

Seismic Performance Prediction Program Logo Nov 01 2017

This Fall Dr. Haselton gave a two part lecture at the University of California, Berkeley. In the first lecture Dr. Haselton taught on the FEMA P-58 Methodology and in the second lecture he dove into resilient design and the new HBRG Structural Response Prediction Engine. The slides for the first lecture are available here and the second lecture here.

Seismic Performance Prediction Program Logo Oct 13 2017

With the recent release of the SP3 Building-Specific Risk Model, clients can now run SP3 analyses using more minimal insurance-level input information, and also use the same Risk Model to complete a higher-fidelity assessment when additional building information or an engineering evaluation is available. To support this process, we are now offering the SP3_Batch service. The SP3_Batch service pairs the SP3 Building-Specific Risk Model with the advanced cloud computing of Amazon Web Services, in order to enable large inventories of buildings to be analyzed quickly. See the release noted for SP3_Batch here.

Seismic Performance Prediction Program Logo Sep 12 2017

HB-Risk hosted an online webinar on the new SP3 Building-Specific Risk Model. This webinar discussed the technical basis and various components of the Model, and summarize the detailed R&D involved in developing the Model. With this new SP3 Building-Specific Risk Model technology, clients can now run efficient risk assessments for large inventories of buildings, and use the same underlying technology to complete a higher-fidelity risk assessment when additional building information or an engineering evaluation is available. The presentation is available here and the full webinar video is available here.

Seismic Performance Prediction Program Logo Sep 01 2017

Together with a group of leaders in seismic resilience, Dr. Haselton prepared a paper for The Structural Engineers Association of California (SEAOC) 2017 Convention. The paper, “Considerations for a Framework of Resilient Structural Design for Earthquakes”, is available here.

Seismic Performance Prediction Program Logo Aug 01 2017

The SP3 team welcomes a new engineering researcher, Edward Almeter. Edward joins the team from the Masters in Earthquake Engineering and Engineering Seismology program in Pavia, Italy and had previously graduated with Honors from State University of New York at Buffalo. Edward's master's research focused on seismic evaluation of steel special concentrically braced frames. On the HB-Risk team, he is currently focused on nonlinear dynamic structural modeling and programming to advance the SP3 performance prediction algorithms.