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Soil amplification in low-to-moderate seismic regions


The results of a study that investigates potential revisions of the spectral shape factors used in standards in regions of low-to-moderate seismicity are presented here. Using an equivalent linear analysis, the investigation particularly focuses on the effects of seismic intensity associated with rare and very rare intraplate earthquake events on site response. The Pacific Earthquake Engineering Research Center ground motion database (PEER) is used in selecting appropriate acceleration-time histories for the intraplate region. The results are normalised for comparison with the current spectral shape factors given in the Australian Standards for Earthquake Actions AS 1170.4:2007, with some differences being observed. The dependency of site amplification on seismic intensity was only observed for soil classes Ce, De and Ee. The rock site of class Be had considerably higher response in the short period range relative to class Ee. The records from the PEER ground motion database were also used for comparison with the results from this study, using a modified normalisation approach. The results from this study correlate well with the records from PEER.

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The support of the Commonwealth of Australia through the Bushfire and Natural Hazards Cooperative Research Centre program is acknowledged.

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Corresponding author

Correspondence to Ryan D. Hoult.



See Table 4.

Table 4 Ground motions from PEER (2013) and scaling used for input

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Hoult, R.D., Lumantarna, E. & Goldsworthy, H.M. Soil amplification in low-to-moderate seismic regions. Bull Earthquake Eng 15, 1945–1963 (2017).

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  • Low-to-moderate
  • Intraplate
  • Soil
  • Response
  • Amplification
  • Spectral
  • SHAKE2000
  • PEER
  • Australia
  • Seismic