Earthquakes

Earthquakes originate from a sudden release of elastic energy caused by the rupture of rock in the Earth’s interior. The damaging effects of earthquakes are mainly caused by the impact of seismic waves, which may strongly shatter large areas. It is now commonly accepted that wave propagation effects play an important role for earthquake damage. The seismic signal is particularly affected by the subsurface geology. Considerable amplifications occur if a layer with low seismic velocities overlies material with high seismic velocities. Earthquake ground motion excites the buildings and makes them resonate corresponding to their natural frequency and damping. A particular dangerous situation arises if the natural frequency of a structure falls in the frequency range with of major seismic radiation. In this case the accelerations within the structure may be several times higher than the ground accelerations measured at the earth’s surface.
IES has got the know how to realize physical models permitting the creation of scenarios for the simulation of strong ground motion. These synthetic approaches account for the individual characteristics of the sites in cities or at industrial plants as well as the properties of the relevant earthquakes.

Realizations

ShakyGround - Simulating earthquake effects in urban and industrial areasSHAKYGROUND is a software tool designed to provide the earthquakes effects estimation in urban, industrial areas and cities. It provides the user a friendly environment allowing the simulation of strong ground motion by means of synthetic simulation of acceleration seismograms and the estimation of seismic load in a given area.
It forms the seismological base for the design of earthquake-resistant buildings and for land use planning. Moreover, it allows the identification of sites where the expected ground shaking is severe; this can be useful for emergency planning, as well as for enhancing earthquake awareness.

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