This paper presents a methodology for the assessment of cumulative damage in structural steel components subjected to cyclic inelastic loading histories of the type experienced in earthquakes. The methodology is based on low-cycle fatigue concepts and the hypothesis of linear damage accumulation. It will be shown that seismic performance of a component depends on two structural performance parameters and on the number and amplitudes of all inelastic excursions and not only on the maximum excursion. Experimental and analytical procedures for obtaining the parameters needed for a performance assessment are suggested in the paper.

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