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Comparison between outcomes of the 2014 Earthquake Hazard Model of the Middle East (EMME14) and national seismic design codes: The case of Iran

Kohrangi et al.

Physical risk



Regional, multi-country seismic hazard models provide a comparison basis for national seismic hazard models that are generally used to underpin the seismic design prescriptions of national building codes. Our study presents an attempt to formalize a framework for performing such a comparison. This comparison consists of sequential steps for identifying and understanding similarities of the key elements informing the seismic hazard models and the code design ground motions in addition to their numerical comparison. The challenge may arise, on one hand, from the lack of transparency of some national seismic codes and, on the other hand, from the intrinsic difficulties in comparing seismic hazard models. In this study, as an example we compare the seismic design spectrum of the Iranian national design code with the uniform hazard spectra from the recent, fully-harmonized, cross-borders Earthquake Hazard Model for the Middle East region (EMME). This comparison focuses on the two 10% in 50-year exceedance probability maps for PGA and on the pairs of design spectra for four cities with different seismicity levels. While, in general, the two reference maps for PGA on rock seem similar, the comparison of the uniform hazard spectra and design spectra for the four selected cities for different soil conditions show large differences. We offer some plausible causes for these differences as well as generic recommendations for overcoming them.

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