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Performance of 18-Story Steel Momentframe Buildings during a large San Andreas Earthquake - A Southern California-Wide End-to-End Simulation

Krishnan, Swaminathan and Ji, Chen and Komatitsch, Dimitri and Tromp, Jeroen (2005) Performance of 18-Story Steel Momentframe Buildings during a large San Andreas Earthquake - A Southern California-Wide End-to-End Simulation. EERL Report, 2005-01. Earthquake Engineering Research Laboratory , Pasadena, California.

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The mitigation of seismic risk in urban areas in the United States and abroad is of major concern for all governments. Unfortunately no comprehensive studies have attempted to address this issue in a rigorous, quantitative manner. This study tackles this problem head-on for one typical class of tall buildings in southern California. The approach adopted here can be used as a template to study earthquake risk in other seismically sensitive regions of the world, such as Taiwan, Japan, Indonesia, China, South American countries (Chile, Bolivia, etc.), and the west coast of the United States (in particular, Seattle). In 1857 a large earthquake of magnitude 7.9 [1] occurred on the San Andreas fault with rupture initiating at Parkeld in Central California and propagating in a southeasterly direction over a distance of more than 360 km. Such a unilateral rupture produces signicant directivity toward the San Fernando and Los Angeles basins. Indeed, newspaper reports (Los Angeles Star [2, 3]) of sloshing observed in the Los Angeles river point to long-duration (1-2 min) and long-period (2-8 s) shaking, which could have a severe impact on present-day tall buildings, especially in the mid-height range. To assess the risk posing tall steel moment-frame buildings from an 1857-like earthquake on the San Andreas fault, a nite source model of the magnitude 7.9 November 3, 2002 Denali fault earthquake is mapped on to the San Andreas fault with rupture initiating at Parkeld in Central California and propagating a distance of about 290 km in a south-easterly direction. As the rupture proceeds down south from Parkeld and hits the big bend on the San Andreas fault, it sheds off a signicant amount of energy into the San Fernando valley, generating large amplitude ground motion there. A good portion of this energy spills over into the Los Angeles basin with many cities along the coast such as Santa Monica and Seal Beach and more inland areas going east from Seal beach towards Anaheim experiencing long-duration shaking. In addition, the tail-end of the rupture sheds energy from SH/Love waves into the Baldwin Park-La Puente region, which is bounded by a line of mountains that creates a mini-basin, further amplifying the ground motion. The peak velocity is of the order of 1 m.s in the Los Angeles basin, including downtown Los Angeles, and 2 m.s in the San Fernando valley. Signicant displacements occur in the basins but not in the mountains. The peak displacements are in the neighborhood of 1 m in the Los Angeles basin and 2 m in the San Fernando valley. The ground motion simulation is performed using the spectral element method based seismic wave propagation program, SPECFEM3D. To study the effects of the ground motion simulated at 636 sites (spread across southern California, spaced at about 3.5 km each way), computer models of an existing 18-story steel moment-frame building and a redesigned building with the same conguration (redesigned to current standards using the 1997 Uniform Building Code) are analyzed using the nonlinear structural analysis program, FRAME3D. For these analyses, the building Y direction is aligned with the geographical north direction. As expected, the existing building model fares much worse than the redesigned building model. Fracture occurs in at least 25% of the connections in this building when located in the San Fernando valley. About 10% of connections fracture in the building when located in downtown Los Angeles and the mid-Wilshire district (Beverly Hills), while the numbers are about 20% when it is located in Santa Monica, west Los Angeles, Inglewood , Alhambra, Baldwin Park, La Puente, Downey, Norwalk, Brea, Fullerton, Anaheim and Seal Beach. The peak interstory drifts in the middle-third and bottom-third of the existing building are far greater than the top-third pointing to damage being localized to the lower oors. The localization of damage in the lower oors rather than the upper oors could potentially be worse because of the risk of more oors pancaking on top of each other if a single story gives way. Consistent with the extent of fracture observed, the peak drifts in the existing building exceed 0.10 when located in the San Fernando valley, Baldwin Park and neighboring cities, Santa Monica, west Los Angeles and neighboring cities, Norwalk and neighboring cities, and Seal Beach and neighboring cities, which is well into the postulated collapse regime. When located in downtown Los Angeles and the mid-Wilshire district, the building would barely satisfy the collapse prevention criteria set by FEMA [4] with peak drifts of about 0.05. The performance of the newly designed 18-story steel building is signicantly better than the existing building for the entire region. However, the new building still has signicant drifts indicative of serious damage when located in the San Fernando valley or the Baldwin Park area. When located in coastal cities (such as Santa Monica, Seal Beach etc.), the Wilshire-corridor (west Los Angeles, Beverly Hills, etc.), the mid-city region (Downey, Norwalk, etc.) or the booming Orange County cities of Anaheim and Santa Ana, it has peak drifts of about 0.05, once again barely satisfying the FEMA collapse prevention criteria [5]. In downtown Los Angeles it does not undergo much damage in this scenario. Thus, even though this building has been designed according to the latest code, it suffers damage that would necessitate closure for some time following the earthquake in most areas, but this should be expected since this is a large earthquake and building codes are written to limit the loss of life and ensure "collapse prevention" for such large earthquakes, but not necessarily limit damage. Unfortunately, widespread closures such as this could cripple the regional economy in the event of such an earthquake. A second scenario considered in the study involves the same Denali earthquake source mapped to the San Andreas fault but with rupture initiating in the south and propagating to the north (with the largest amount of slip occurring to the north in Central California) instead of the other way around. The results of such a scenario indicate that ground shaking would be far less severe demonstrating the effects of directivity and slip distribution in dictating the level of ground shaking and the associated damage in buildings. The peak drifts in existing and redesigned building models are in the range of 0.02-0.04 indicating that there is no signicant danger of collapse. However, damage would still be signicant enough to warrant building closures and compromise life safety in some instances. The ground motion simulation and the structural damage modeling procedures are validated using data from the January 17, 1994, Northridge earthquake while the band-limited nature of the ground motion simulation (limited to a shortest period of 2 s by the current state of knowledge of the 3-D Earth structure) is shown to have no signicant effect on the response of the two tall buildings considered here with the use of observed records from the 1999 Chi Chi earthquake in Taiwan and the 2001 Tokachi-Oki earthquake in Japan.

Item Type:Report or Paper (Technical Report)
Krishnan, Swaminathan0000-0002-2594-1523
Ji, Chen0000-0002-0350-5704
Tromp, Jeroen0000-0002-2742-8299
Group:Earthquake Engineering Research Laboratory
Series Name:EERL Report
Issue or Number:2005-01
Record Number:CaltechEERL:EERL-2005-01
Persistent URL:
Usage Policy:You are granted permission for individual, educational, research and non-commercial reproduction, distribution, display and performance of this work in any format.
ID Code:26554
Deposited By: Imported from CaltechEERL
Deposited On:15 Mar 2006
Last Modified:09 Mar 2020 13:19

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