Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Should We Better Prepare for Earthquakes?

16.12.2011
University of Adelaide researchers are leading an international project to help identify buildings most vulnerable to earthquakes and the best ways to strengthen them.

Chief Investigator Professor Mike Griffith, from the University’s School of Civil, Environmental and Mining Engineering, says the model will help determine priorities for strengthening the more susceptible unreinforced masonry buildings .

The team, including researchers from the University of Auckland in New Zealand and the University of Pavia in Italy, is using data on building damage collected in Christchurch following the earthquakes in February 2011 and September 2010 as part of their work for the Canterbury Earthquakes Royal Commission.

“We are taking what we observed and learned from Christchurch to assess the level of risk posed by earthquakes to masonry buildings generally,” said Professor Griffith.

“We are also looking at the unreinforced masonry buildings in Christchurch that had some seismic strengthening to see how those buildings behaved in the September and February earthquakes in order to identify which retrofitting schemes were more effective than others.”

Professor Griffith said New Zealand and Australia were both settled around the same time with many buildings built before the 1930s with similar styles of construction.

“Hence, the Christchurch earthquakes give us a unique opportunity to learn how to prevent widespread damage to heritage construction in future earthquakes,” he said.

New Zealand stopped building masonry buildings after the major 1931 Hawke’s Bay earthquake, but this style of construction continued in Australia and many people are still renovating and living in this type of building – some are heritage listed.

Work to date has shown that buildings strengthened to about one-third of modern building standards offered no significant protection against the Christchurch earthquake. Buildings that were strengthened to two-thirds of new building requirements showed significant reduction in damage.

“These higher level strengthening schemes are more invasive and obviously come at much higher cost,” said Professor Griffith. “We want to be able to calculate how much improvement we can achieve by strengthening schemes and at what cost – a cost/benefit ratio for retrofitting buildings against earthquake damage.”

The model will be applicable for different building construction styles used around the world. The research project won funding under the latest round of Australian Research Council Discovery Projects for funding from 2012.

Media Contact:
Professor Mike Griffith
School of Civil, Environmental and Mining Engineering
The University of Adelaide
Phone: +61 8 8303 4316
Mobile: +61 417 197 225
michael.griffith@adelaide.edu.au
Robyn Mills
Media Officer
The University of Adelaide
Phone: +61 8 8303 6341
Mobile: +61 410 689 084
robyn.mills@adelaide.edu.au

Robyn Mills | Newswise Science News
Further information:
http://www.adelaide.edu.au

More articles from Earth Sciences:

nachricht A promising target in the quest for a 1-million-year-old Antarctic ice core
24.05.2018 | University of Washington

nachricht Tropical Peat Swamps: Restoration of Endangered Carbon Reservoirs
24.05.2018 | Leibniz-Zentrum für Marine Tropenforschung (ZMT)

All articles from Earth Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Molecular switch will facilitate the development of pioneering electro-optical devices

A research team led by physicists at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) has developed molecular nanoswitches that can be toggled between two structurally different states using an applied voltage. They can serve as the basis for a pioneering class of devices that could replace silicon-based components with organic molecules.

The development of new electronic technologies drives the incessant reduction of functional component sizes. In the context of an international collaborative...

Im Focus: LZH showcases laser material processing of tomorrow at the LASYS 2018

At the LASYS 2018, from June 5th to 7th, the Laser Zentrum Hannover e.V. (LZH) will be showcasing processes for the laser material processing of tomorrow in hall 4 at stand 4E75. With blown bomb shells the LZH will present first results of a research project on civil security.

At this year's LASYS, the LZH will exhibit light-based processes such as cutting, welding, ablation and structuring as well as additive manufacturing for...

Im Focus: Self-illuminating pixels for a new display generation

There are videos on the internet that can make one marvel at technology. For example, a smartphone is casually bent around the arm or a thin-film display is rolled in all directions and with almost every diameter. From the user's point of view, this looks fantastic. From a professional point of view, however, the question arises: Is that already possible?

At Display Week 2018, scientists from the Fraunhofer Institute for Applied Polymer Research IAP will be demonstrating today’s technological possibilities and...

Im Focus: Explanation for puzzling quantum oscillations has been found

So-called quantum many-body scars allow quantum systems to stay out of equilibrium much longer, explaining experiment | Study published in Nature Physics

Recently, researchers from Harvard and MIT succeeded in trapping a record 53 atoms and individually controlling their quantum state, realizing what is called a...

Im Focus: Dozens of binaries from Milky Way's globular clusters could be detectable by LISA

Next-generation gravitational wave detector in space will complement LIGO on Earth

The historic first detection of gravitational waves from colliding black holes far outside our galaxy opened a new window to understanding the universe. A...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

Save the date: Forum European Neuroscience – 07-11 July 2018 in Berlin, Germany

02.05.2018 | Event News

Invitation to the upcoming "Current Topics in Bioinformatics: Big Data in Genomics and Medicine"

13.04.2018 | Event News

Unique scope of UV LED technologies and applications presented in Berlin: ICULTA-2018

12.04.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

When corals eat plastics

24.05.2018 | Ecology, The Environment and Conservation

Surgery involving ultrasound energy found to treat high blood pressure

24.05.2018 | Medical Engineering

First chip-scale broadband optical system that can sense molecules in the mid-IR

24.05.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>