Journal article

Comparison between seismic vulnerability models and experimental dynamic properties of existing buildings in France.

Elastic fundamental frequency is a key-parameter of simplified seismic design and vulnerability assessment methods. Empirical relationships exist in codes to estimate this frequency but they miss experimental data to validate them accounting for national feature of building design and, above all, corresponding uncertainties. Even if resonance frequency extracted from ambient vibrations may be larger than the elastic frequency (at yield) generally used in earthquake engineering, ambient vibration recordings may provide a large set of data for statistical analysis of periods versus building characteristics relationships. We recorded ambient vibrations and estimated the fundamental frequency of about 60 buildings of various types (RC and masonry) in Grenoble City (France). These data complete the set existing yet, made of 26 RC-buildings of Grenoble (Farsi and Bard 2004) and 28 buildings in Nice (France) (Dunand 2005). Statistical analysis of these experimental data was performed for fundamental frequencies of RC shear wall structures and the results are compared with existing relationships. Only building height or number of stories has a statistical relevancy to estimate the resonance frequency but the variability associated to the proposed relationships is large. Moreover, we compared the elastic part of capacity curves of RC and masonry buildings used in the European Risk-UE method for vulnerability assessment with the experimental frequencies. The variability is also large and the curves may not be consistent with French existing buildings.


Related material