A Web Application Prototype for the Multiscale Modelling of Seismic Input

  • Franco VaccariEmail author
Part of the Springer Natural Hazards book series


A web application prototype is described, aimed at the generation of synthetic seismograms for user-defined earthquake models. The web application graphical user interface hides the complexity of the underlying computational engine, which is the outcome of the continuous evolution of sophisticated computer codes, some of which saw the light back in the middle 1980s. With the web application, even the non-experts can produce ground shaking scenarios at the local or regional scale in very short times, depending on the complexity of the adopted source and medium models, without the need of a deep knowledge of the physics of the earthquake phenomenon. Actually, it may even allow neophytes to get some basic education in the field of seismology and seismic engineering, due to the simplified intuitive experimental approach to the matter. One of the most powerful features made available to the users is indeed the capability of executing quick parametric tests in near real-time, to explore the relations between each model’s parameter and the resulting ground motion scenario. The synthetic seismograms generated through the web application can be used by civil engineers for the design of new seismo-resistant structures, or to analyse the performance of the existing ones under seismic load.


Ground Motion Seismic Hazard Epicentral Distance Synthetic Seismogram Earthquake Scenario 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



First and foremost, this web application couldn’t have seen the light without the underlying computational engine, based on the pioneering work by Prof. Panza. Giuliano’s energy, and his continuous push and encouragement have played a decisive role in shaping up and transforming the original codes into the friendly tools they now are.

The web application development saw the light within the project “Definition of seismic hazard scenarios and microzoning by means of Indo-European e-infrastructures” funded by Regione autonoma Friuli Venezia Giulia in the framework of the interventions aimed at promoting, at regional and local level, the cooperation activities for development and international partnership—“Progetti Quadro ai sensi della Legge regionale n. 19 del 30 ottobre 2000”. I’m truly grateful to Antonella for her impeccable project management.

The recent, strong evolution of the underlying computational engine would have never been possible without the dedicated work by the friends who made my life better here at the University: Fabio, Elisa, Andrea, Cristina and Davide, to name just those more deeply involved in the coding. And of course Enrico, for he knows what…

Stefano and Francesco have introduced me into the new universe of grid and cloud computing. I really enjoyed it, and I do hope our collaboration will continue and expand in the future.

Finally, a deep gratitude goes to my beloved family. I wish all the computational time spared through algorithm and code optimisation might be magically converted into time spent with them. Apparently I’m not too good in doing so, but don’t loose your faith, I’ll keep trying… :-)


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Mathematics and GeosciencesUniversity of TriesteTriesteItaly
  2. 2.The Abdus Salam International Centre for Theoretical PhysicsSAND GroupTriesteItaly

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