Reticulated shell structures have been widely built for public assembly venues, where many people get together during events. Therefore, it is important to conduct condition assessment for this type of structure to ensure the safety of the general public. Considering that the member configuration of this type of structure may follow a regular pattern and damage in a local region may destroy the regular pattern, a damage detection approach based on the change in structural shape is proposed in this study. The change in structural shape can be obtained from the displacement at each joint. Since it may be difficult to measure displacements on this type of structure, it is proposed to use the uniform load surface calculated from the constructed modal flexibility matrix to represent displacements at joints. Therefore, this approach requires the measurement of acceleration responses, instead of displacement measurement. For validating the feasibility of the proposed approach, numerical simulations are conducted on a single-layer dome structure with different levels of damage severity considered. The obtained results verify that the proposed approach is capable of locating damage to exact members.

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