Journal of Seismology

, Volume 14, Issue 2, pp 225–246 | Cite as

Seismic hazard assessment for Cyprus

  • Zehra Cagnan
  • Gulum Birgoren Tanircan
Original article


In the present study, probabilistic seismic hazard assessment was conducted for Cyprus based on several new results: a new comprehensive earthquake catalog, seismic source models based on new research, and new attenuation relationships. Peak ground acceleration distributions obtained for a return period of 475 years for rock conditions indicate high hazard along the southern coastline of Cyprus, where the expected ground motion is between 0.3 and 0.4 g. The rest of the island is characterized by values representing less severe shaking. Results of this study strongly indicate the inadequacy of the Turkish Earthquake Code that is being used in the northern part of the island and the Eurocode 8 that is in effect in the southern part of the island to approximate the uniform hazard spectra developed for the high hazard and moderate hazard regions of the island.


Probabilistic seismic hazard assessment Uniform hazard spectra Cyprus Eurocode 8 Turkish Earthquake Code 


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. Akkar S, Bommer JJ (2007) Prediction of elastic displacement response spectra in Europe and the Middle East. Earthq Eng Struct Dyn 36:1275–1301. doi: 10.1002/eqe.679 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Albarello D, Camassi R, Rebez A (2001) Detection of space and time heterogeneity in the completeness of a seismic catalog by a statistical approach: an application to the Italian area. Bull Seismol Soc Am 91:1694–1703. doi: 10.1785/0120000058 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Algermissen T, Rogers A (2004) A Cyprus earthquake hazard assessment: maps of probabilistic peak ground acceleration and uniform-hazard pseudo-absolute acceleration spectral response. UNOPS Seismic Hazard and Risk Assessment of the Greater Nicosia Area ReportGoogle Scholar
  4. Ambraseys NN (1965) The seismic history of Cyprus. Revenue Union Intern Secours Geneva 3:25–48Google Scholar
  5. Ambraseys NN (1989) Temporary seismic quiescence: southeast Turkey. Geophys J 96:311–331. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-246X.1989.tb04453.x CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Ambraseys NN (1992) Reappraisal of the seismicity in Cyprus (1894–1991). Boll Geofis Teor Eds Appl 34:41–80Google Scholar
  7. Ambraseys NN (2000) Reassessment of earthquakes, 1900–1999, in the eastern Mediterranean and the Middle East. Geophys J 145:471–485. doi: 10.1046/j.0956-540x.2001.01396.x CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Ambraseys NN, Adams RD (1992) Seismicity of the Cyprus region. Imperial College, ESEE Research Report 92-9, London, pp 47–67Google Scholar
  9. Ambraseys NN, Bommer JJ (1991) The attenuation of ground acceleration in Europe. Earthq Eng Struct Dyn 20:1179–1202. doi: 10.1002/eqe.4290201207 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Ambraseys NN, Finkel C (1987) Seismicity of Turkey and neighboring regions 1899–1915. Ann Geophys 6:701–726Google Scholar
  11. Ambraseys NN, Finkel C (1995) The seismicity of Turkey and adjacent areas—a historical review 1500–1800. Muhittin Salih EREN, IstanbulGoogle Scholar
  12. Ambraseys NN, Jackson JA (1998) Faulting associated with historical and recent earthquakes in the Eastern Mediterranean region. Geophys J 133:390–406. doi: 10.1046/j.1365-246X.1998.00508.x CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Ambraseys NN, Melville CP, Adams RD (1994) The seismicity of Egypt, Arabia and the Red Sea: a historical review. Cambridge University Press, CambridgeCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Atkinson GM, Boore DM (2003) Empirical ground motion relations for subduction zone earthquakes and their application to Cascadia and other regions. Bull Seismol Soc Am 93:1703–1729. doi: 10.1785/0120020156 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Baba AB, Papadimitriou EE, Papazachos BC, Papaioannou CA, Karakostas BG (2000) Unified local magnitude scales for earthquakes of southern Balkan area. Pure Appl Geophys 157:765–783. doi: 10.1007/PL00001117 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Barka A, Reilinger R (1997) Active tectonics of the Eastern Mediterranean region deduced from GPS, neotectonic, and seismicity data. Ann Geofis 40:587–610Google Scholar
  17. Barka A, Reilinger R, Şaroğlu F, Şengör AMC (1997) The Isparta angle: its importance in the neotectonics of the Eastern Mediterranean region. IESCA, İzmir, TurkeyGoogle Scholar
  18. Ben-Avraham Z (1989) Multiple opening and closing of the eastern Mediterranean and south China basins. Tectonics 8:351–362. doi: 10.1029/TC008i002p00351 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Ben-Avraham Z, Kempler D, Ginzburg A (1988) Plate convergence in the Cyprean Arc. Tectonophysics 146:231–240. doi: 10.1016/0040-1951(88)90093-5 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Ben-Avraham Z, Tibor G, Limonov AF, Leybov MB, Ivanov MK, Tokarev MY, Woodside JM (1995) Structure and tectonics of the eastern Cyprean Arc. Mar Pet Geol 12:263–271. doi: 10.1016/0264-8172(95)98379-J CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Bender B, Perkins DM (1987) SEISRISKIII: a computer program for seismic hazard estimation. USGS Bulletin 1772, Denver, Colorado, pp 1–48Google Scholar
  22. Bommer JJ, Pinho R (2004) Adapting earthquake actions in Eurocode 8 for peformance based seismic design. Earthq Eng Struct Dyn 35:39–55. doi: 10.1002/eqe.530 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Bommer JJ, Scherbaum F (2008) The use and misuse of logic trees in PSHA. Earthq Spectra 24:997–1009. doi: 10.1193/1.2977755 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Boore DM, Atkinson GM (2008) Ground motion prediction equations for the average horizontal component of PGA, PGV, and 5% Damped PSA at spectral periods between 0.01s and 10.0s. Earthq Spectra 24:99–138. doi: 10.1193/1.2830434 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Boore D, Joyner WB, Fumal TE (1997) Equations for estimating horizontal response spectra and peak acceleration from western north American earthquakes: a summary of recent work. Seismol Res Lett 68:128–153Google Scholar
  26. Campbell KW (1997) Empirical near-source attenuation relationships for horizontal and vertical components of peak ground acceleration, peak ground velocity, and psuedo-absolute acceleration response spectra. Seismol Res Lett 68(1):154–179Google Scholar
  27. Campbell KW, Bozorgnia Y (1994) Near-source attenuation of peak horizontal acceleration from worldwide accelerograms recorded from 1957 to 1993. In: Proceedings of 5th US National Conference on Earthquake Engineering, Chicago, Il, pp 283–292Google Scholar
  28. Can O (1997) Assessment of seismic hazard for Cyprus. MSc thesis submitted to Eastern Mediterranean UniversityGoogle Scholar
  29. CEN (2004) Eurcode 8, design of sturctures for earthquake resistance-part 1: general rules, seismic actions and rules for buildings, EN 1998-1:2004. Comite Europeen de Normalisation, BrusselsGoogle Scholar
  30. CEN (2007) National Annex to Eurocode 8, design of structures for earthquake resistance-part 1: general rules, seismic actions and rules for buildings, CYS EN 1998-1:2005. Comite European de Normalisation, BrusselsGoogle Scholar
  31. Comninakis PE, Papazachos BC (1972) Seismicity of the eastern Mediterranean ridge. Bull Geol Soc Am 83:1093–1102. doi: 10.1130/0016-7606(1972)83[1093:SOTEMA]2.0.CO;2 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Cornell CA (1968) Engineering seismic risk analysis. Bull Seismol Soc Am 58:1583–1606Google Scholar
  33. Cyprus Civil Engineers and Architects Association (1992) Seismic code for reinforced concrete structures in Cyprus. Committee for Earthquake Engineering Cyprus Civil Engineers and Architects Association, CyprusGoogle Scholar
  34. Demircioglu M, Sesetyan K, Durukal E, Erdik M (2007) Assessment of earthquake hazard in Turkey. In: Proceedings of Fourth International Conference on Earthquake Geotechnical Engineering, 25–28 June 2007, paper no.1427Google Scholar
  35. Erdik M, Birgoren G, Apaydin N, Onur T (1997) A probabilistic assessment of seismic hazard in Cyprus in terms of spectral amplitudes. The 29th General Assembly of the International Association of Seismology and Physics of the Earth’s Interior (IASPEI 1997), paper no. 1801, Thessaloniki, GreeceGoogle Scholar
  36. Erdik M, Biro Y, Onur T, Sesetyan K, Birgoren G (1999) Assessment of earthquake hazard in Turkey and neighboring regions. Ann Geofis 42:1125-1138 (Special issue: Global Seismic Hazard Assessment Program (GSHAP) 1992–1999)Google Scholar
  37. Gajardo E, Franke M, Quijada P (1996) Seismic hazard and design conditions for Vasilikos Power Plant. Report prepared for Geological Survey Department, Republic of Cyprus, p 27Google Scholar
  38. Gajardo E, Kyriacou E, Kramvis S, Makris J (1997) Seismic microzoning of Larnaka Cyprus. Ministry of Agriculture, Republic of Cyprus, Natural Resources and Environment, Report to Geological Survey Department, p 46Google Scholar
  39. Galanopoulos A, Delibasis N (1965) The seismic activity in the Cyprus area. Prakt Akad Athenon 40:387–405Google Scholar
  40. Geological Survey Department of Cyprus (1995) Geological map of Cyprus 1:250,000. Geological Survey Department, Nicosia, CyprusGoogle Scholar
  41. Giardini D (1999) The Global seismic hazard assessment program (GSHAP): 1992/1999. Ann Geofis 42:957–974Google Scholar
  42. Harrison RW, Newell WL, Batihanli H, Panayides I, McGeehin JP, Mahan SA, Ozhur A, Tsiolakis E, Necdet M (2004) Tectonic framework and late Cenozoic tectonic history of the northern part of Cyprus: implications for earthquake hazards and regional tectonics. J Asian Earth Sci 23:191–210. doi: 10.1016/S1367-9120(03)00095-6 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. IBC (2003) The international building code. International Code Council, Virginia, USAGoogle Scholar
  44. Jimenez MJ, Giardini D, Grunthal G, Erdik M, Garcia-Fernandez M, Lapajne J, Makropoulos K, Musson R, Papaioannou C, Rebez A, Riad S, Sellami S, Shapira A, Slejko D, Van Eck T, El Sayed A (2001) Unified seismic hazard modelling throughout the Mediterranean region. Bolletino Di Geofisica Teorica Ed Applicata 42:3–18Google Scholar
  45. Joyner WB, Boore DM (1981) Peak horizontal acceleration and velocity from strong-motion records including records from the 1979 Imperial Valley, California, earthquake. Bull Seismol Soc Am 71:2011–2038Google Scholar
  46. Kalogeras I, Stavrakakis G, Solomi K (1999) The October 9, 1996 earthquake in Cyprus: seismological, macroseismic and strong motion data. Ann Geofis 42:85–97Google Scholar
  47. Kijko A, Sellevoll MA (1989) Estimation of earthquake hazard parameters from incomplete data files. Part I. Utilization of extreme and complete catalogs with different threshold magnitudes. Bull Seismol Soc Am 79:645–654Google Scholar
  48. LePichon X, Angelier J (1981) The Aegean Sea. Philos Trans R Soc Lond Ser A Math Phys Sci 300:357–372CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  49. Makris J, Stacker J, Rosenkranz C, Kramvis S (1998) A microseismicity survey of the Nicosia area. Geological Survey Department of yprus and the University of Hamburg, Nicosia, Cyprus, p 20Google Scholar
  50. Makris J, Stacker J, Kramvis S (2000) Microseismic studies and tectonic implications of Cyprus. In: Proceedings of the 3rd International Conference on the Geology of the Eastern Mediterranean, pp 137–145Google Scholar
  51. McCallum JE, Robertson AHF (1995) Sedimentology of two fan-delta systems in the Pliocene–Pleistocene of the Mesaoria basin, Cyprus. Sediment Geol 98:215–244. doi: 10.1016/0037-0738(95)00034-6 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  52. McClusky S, Balassanian S, Barka A, Demir C, Ergintav S, Georgiev I, Gurkan P, Hamburger M, Hurst K, Kahle H, Kastens K, Kekelidze G, King R, Kotzev V, Lenk O, Mahmoud S, Mihsin A, Nadariya M, Ouzounis A, Paradissis D, Peter Y, Prilepin M, Reilinger R, Sanli I, Seeger H, Tealeb A, Toksoz M, Veis G (2000) Global positioning system constraints on plate kinematics and dynamics in the eastern Mediterranean and Caucasus. J Geophys Res 105:5695–5719Google Scholar
  53. McGuire RK (1977) Seismic design spectra and mapping procedures using hazard analysis based directly on oscillator response. Earthq Eng Struct Dyn 5:211–234. doi: 10.1002/eqe.4290050302 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  54. McKenzie DP (1970) The plate tectonics of the Mediterranean region. Nature 226:239–243. doi: 10.1038/226239a0 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  55. McKenzie D (1972) Active tectonics of the Mediterranean region. Geophys J R Astron Soc 30:109–185Google Scholar
  56. McKenzie DP (1978) Active tectonics of the Alpine–Himalayan belt: the Aegean Sea and surrounding regions (tectonics of the Aegean region). Geophys J R Astron Soc 55:217–254Google Scholar
  57. Neev D (1975) Tectonic evolution of the Middle East and the Levantine Basin. Geology 3:683–687. doi: 10.1130/0091-7613(1975)3<683:TEOTME>2.0.CO;2 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  58. Neev D, Greenfield L, Hall JK (1985) Slice tectonics in the eastern Mediterranean basin. Geological Evolution of the Mediterranean Basin. Springer, New York, NY, 249–269Google Scholar
  59. Nur A, Ben-Avraham Z (1978) The eastern Mediterranean and the Levant: tectonics of continental collision. Tectonophysics 46:297–311. doi: 10.1016/0040-1951(78)90209-3 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  60. Papaioannou CA (2001) A model for the shallow and intermediate depth seismic sources in the eastern Mediterranean region. Boll Geofis Teor Ed Appl 42:57–74Google Scholar
  61. Papazachos BC, Papaioannou CA (1999) Lithospheric boundaries and plate motions in the Cyprus area. Tectonophysics 308:193–204. doi: 10.1016/S0040-1951(99)00075-X CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  62. Papazachos BC, Kiratzi AA, Karakostas BG (1997) Towards a homogenous moment magnitude determination for earthquakes in Greece and the surrounding area. Bull Seismol Soc Am 87:474–483Google Scholar
  63. Rabinowitz ND, Steinberg M, Leonard G (1998) Logic tree analysis and data reduction in probabilistic seismic hazard assessment. Earthq Spectra 14:189–201. doi: 10.1193/1.1585995 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  64. Reasenberg P (1985) The second-order moment of central California seismicity, 1969–1982. J Geophys Res 90:5479–5495. doi: 10.1029/JB090iB07p05479 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  65. Republic of Cyprus Ministry of Interior and Technical Chamber of Cyprus (2006) National annex to CYS EN 1998-4:2006 Eurocode 8: Design of structures for earthquake resistance. Republic of Cyprus, Eurocodes Committee, Cyprus, p 3Google Scholar
  66. Richter CF (1958) Elementary seismology. Freeman, San FranciscoGoogle Scholar
  67. Risk Engineering (2008) EZ-FRISK version 7.26Google Scholar
  68. Robertson AHF (1990) Ophiolites oceanic crustal analogues. Proc Symp Troodos 1987:235–252Google Scholar
  69. Rotstein Y, Kafka A (1982) Seismotectonics of the southern boundary of Anatolia, Eastern Mediterranean region: Subduction, collision and arc jumping. J Geophys Res 87:7694–7706. doi: 10.1029/JB087iB09p07694 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  70. Sadigh K, Chang CJ, Egan JA, Makdisi F, Youngs RR (1997) Attenuation relationships for shallow crustal earthquakes based on California strong motion data. Seismol Res Lett 68:180–189Google Scholar
  71. Saroglu F, Emre O, Kuscu I (1992) The east anatolian fault zone of Turkey. Ann Tectonicae 6:99–125Google Scholar
  72. Soulas JP (1999) Active tectonics studies in Cyprus for seismic risk mitigation: The greater Limassol area final report. Geological Survey Department of Nicosia, Nicosia, Cyprus, 24pGoogle Scholar
  73. Soulas JP (2001) Active tectonics studies in Cyprus for seismic risk mitigation: the greater Paphos area final report. Geological Survey Department of Nicosia, Nicosia, Cyprus, 24pGoogle Scholar
  74. Soulas JP (2002) Active tectonics in southern Cyprus fundamentals of seismic risk analysis. Proceedings International Conference on Earthquake Risk Minimization, Geological Survey Department, Ministry of Agriculture, Natural Resources and Environment in Cooporation with the Ministry of the Interiors and the Technical Chamber of Cyprus, Nicosia, Cyprus, pp 39–68Google Scholar
  75. Stepp JC (1972) Analysis of completeness of the earthquake sample in the Puget Sound area. In: Handing ST (ed) Contributions to Seismic Zoning. NOAA Tech. Rep. ERL 267-ESL 30, U.S. Dep. of CommerceGoogle Scholar
  76. Swarbrick RE (1993) Sinistral strike-slip and transpressional tectonics in an ancient oceanic setting: the Mamonia Complex, southeast Cyprus. J Geol Soc Lond 150:381–392. doi: 10.1144/gsjgs.150.2.0381 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  77. TEC (2007) Specification for structures to be built in disaster areas. Ministry of Public Works and Settlement Government of Republic of TurkeyGoogle Scholar
  78. USGS (1999) Implications for earthquake risk reduction in the United States from Kocaeli, Turkey earthquake of August 17 1999. USGS Circular 1193, 65pGoogle Scholar
  79. USGS Eastern Earth Surface Processes Team (2003) Seismic hazard assessment project, WSE-PS02-4008 U.S.G.S. Report for Phase II. USGS report prepared for the UNOPS, Nicosia, Cyprus, 60pGoogle Scholar
  80. Weichert DH (1980) Estimation of the earthquake recurrence parameters for unequal observation periods for different magnitudes. Bull Seismol Soc Am 70:1337–1346Google Scholar
  81. Youngs RR, Chiou SJ, Silva WJ, Humphrey JR (1997) Strong ground motion attenuation relationships for subduction zone earthquakes. Seismol Res Lett 68:58–73Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Middle East Technical University–Northern Cyprus CampusMersin 10Turkey
  2. 2.Kandilli Observatory and Earthquake Research InstituteBogazici UniversityIstanbulTurkey

Personalised recommendations