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Lessons learned from the “5.12” Wenchuan Earthquake: evaluation of earthquake performance objectives and the importance of seismic conceptual design principles

Date: 2018-05-31      View counts: 449    


Wang Yayong
Earthquake Engineering and Engineering Vibration
seismic conceptual design
Paper Keyword
Wenchuan Earthquake; building damage; seismic conceptual design, multiple defense lines
Many different types of buildings were severely damaged or collapsed during the May 12, 2008 Great Wenchuan Earthquake. Based on survey data collected in regions that were subjected to moderate to severe earthquake intensities, a comparison between the observed building damage, and the three earthquake performance objectives and seismic conceptual design principles specifi ed by the national “Code for Seismic Design of Buildings GB50011-2001,” was carried out. Actual damage and predicted damage for a given earthquake level for different types of structures is compared. Discussions on seismic conceptual design principles, with respect to multiple defense lines, strong column-weak beam, link beam of shear walls, ductility detailing of masonry structures, exits and staircases, and nonstructural elements, etc. are carried out. Suggestions for improving the seismic design of structures are also proposed. It is concluded that the seismic performance objectives for three earthquake levels, i.e., “no failure under minor earthquake level, ” “repairable damage under moderate earthquake level” and “no collapse under major earthquake level” can be achieved if seismic design principles are carried out by strictly following the code requirements and ensuring construction quality.
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