Infoscience

Journal article

Validation and improvement of Risk-UE LM2 capacity curves for URM buildings with stiff floors and RC shear walls buildings

This paper addresses seismic vulnerability assessment at an urban scale and more specifically the capacity curves involved for building damage prediction. Standard capacity curves are a function of predefined building typology and are proposed in the Risk-UE LM2 method for computation of the corresponding damage grades. However, these capacity curves have been mainly developed for building stock of southern European cities and the accuracy of their application with different building features, such as the ones of cities of northern Europe should be assessed. A recent research project of seismic scenarios for the cities of Sion and Martigny in Switzerland provided the opportunity to check the capacity curves of Risk-UE LM2 method. Within the framework of this project, a detailed analysis was achieved for more than 500 buildings. These buildings were typical Swiss buildings and were composed of both unreinforced masonry buildings with stiff floors and reinforced concrete buildings. The construction drawings of each building were collected in order to have the most accurate information about their main structural characteristics. The typological classification that has been adopted was developed in a recent research project. Based on the individual features of the buildings, individual capacity curves were defined. Results of the seismic assessment applied to the 500 buildings compare very well with those obtained by using Risk-UE LM2 method for unreinforced masonry buildings with stiff floors. A slight improvement may be proposed for buildings with three stories through their introduction to the category of low-rise instead of mid-rise buildings. By contrast, accuracy for reinforced concrete buildings with shear walls is very poor. Damage prediction using related capacity curves of Risk-UE LM2 method does not correspond to reality. Prediction is too pessimistic and moreover damage grades increase with the height category (low-rise, mid-rise and high-rise) of these buildings which is in contradiction with the observed damages for this type of buildings. Improvements are proposed to increase the accuracy of the seismic vulnerability assessment for northern European building stock. For unreinforced masonry buildings, a slight modification of the limits of the height category of buildings using the ones defined for RC buildings improves the damage prediction. For reinforced concrete buildings with shear walls improved capacity curves derived from the typological curves of the specific typology C are proposed.

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