Dynamic Isolation Systems

Dynamic Isolations Systems logo

Dynamic Isolation Systems’ also know as DIS, 60,000 square foot manufacturing facility is located in Sparks, Nevada, USA. Dynamic Isolation Systems played a key role in the development of Seismic Isolation Technology including its commercialization in the 1980’s. Dynamic Isolation Systems helped develop codes and provided design and analysis support to engineers and government agencies. DIS has continued to develop its isolators to perform well at large lateral displacements accompanied with high axial loads. Today Dynamic Isolation Systems has provided over 14,000 isolators for more than 300 bridges and building projects worldwide.


Project Support

Dynamic Isolation Systems can assist you with your feasibility study, budget development and value engineering. We have been able to reduce the cost of the isolation system by up to 30% on projects where we can lend our expertise to the isolator layout and product mix. Our Engineers can provide technical support and parameters for structural modeling. Isolators can be modeled explicitly in analysis software such as ETABS, SAP2000 and LARSA. When software does not support an explicit isolator element, a spring element or a short column may be used to simulate the isolator.


Manufacturing Capabilities

Press Capabilities

Dynamic Isolation Systems molds in custom designed and built presses ranging from 200 to 4400 tons. In response to increased demand for larger sized isolators DIS now has four presses of over 2,000 ton capacity. The largest isolators we have manufactured were 60 inches in diameter and weighed 10 tons each.


Steel processing is a major part of manufacturing our isolators. Two large computer controlled machining centers process the bulk of our steel plate. They have a capacity to machine up to 80 inch wide plates.



Prototype tests validate the isolator properties over the range of the project’s loads and displacements. Prototype testing may be eliminated due to similarity with previous projects. Production tests check the properties of isolators under the project’s load and displacement conditions. Our main test rig has a shear displacement of ± 31 inches, a shear force capacity of 700 tons and an axial force capacity of 2,000 tons. Testing is also conducted in a smaller machine that has a shear displacement capacity of ± 12 inches, a shear force capacity of 100 tons and an axial force capacity of 600 tons.

More than 20, 000 test have been conducted using our 2,000-ton test machine

Test loop

Isolators are tested in pairs at our plant and singly at laboratories such as at the University of California, San Diego (UCSD). The test machine applies a shear displacement and axial load to the isolator. A plot of the test is called a hysteresis loop.

Real Time Testing P200

DIS has tested over 30 isolators at actual earthquake velocities of up to 60 inches per second. The tests were performed at the University of California, San Diego. These tests validate the performance of our isolators under seismic conditions and provide detailed velocity data for the isolators. Over 500 tests have been performed over the last seven years on isolators of up to 53.5 inches (1300 mm) in diameter.

Large Strain Testing

DIS has conducted extensive high strain testing on isolators up to 53.5 inches (1300 mm) in diameter. Isolators with and without lead cores have been successfully tested to over 400% shear strain. Typical design shear strains are in the 200 to 250% range. Other notable large displacement tests performed by DIS include a 45.5 inch (1200 mm) diameter isolator being tested to 45 inches displacement.

1 Mile Wear Test

A one-mile (1.6 km) wear test was performed on DIS isolators at the SEES Lab, SUNY at Buffalo. The tests were conducted as part of prototype testing for the new Woodrow Wilson Bridge over the Potomac River in Maryland. This test simulated the effect of a lifetime of thermal expansions and contractions of the bridge deck. The results pictured here show that the isolator’s properties were unchanged by this extensive testing.




Seismic Isolation Lead Rubber Bearings (LBR)


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Non-Structural Seismic Isolation – Data Centers, Medical and Industrial Equipment


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3 Dimensional Isolation Systems


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