Preprints
https://doi.org/10.5194/nhess-2021-279
https://doi.org/10.5194/nhess-2021-279

  22 Oct 2021

22 Oct 2021

Review status: this preprint is currently under review for the journal NHESS.

Sensitivity analysis of input ground motion on surface motion parameters in high seismic regions: A case of Bhutan Himalaya

Karma Tempa1, Komal Raj Aryal2, Nimesh Chettri1, Giovanni Forte3, and Dipendra Gautam4 Karma Tempa et al.
  • 1Civil Engineering Department, College of Science and Technology, Royal University of Bhutan, Phuentsholing, Bhutan
  • 2Faculty of Resilience, Rabdan Academy, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates
  • 3Department of Civil, Environmental and Architectural Engineering (DICEA), University of Naples Federico II, Naples, Italy
  • 4Department of Civil Engineering, Institute of Engineering, Thapathali Campus, Kathmandu, Nepal

Abstract. Historical earthquakes demonstrated that the combination of the characteristics of strong ground motion and local soil conditions significantly influence the seismic site response of a particular site. Since there are no instrumental records of past earthquakes in Bhutan, this study is the first attempt to quantify the influence of the local site conditions in the eastern fringe of the Himalaya considering various global historical earthquakes on a deterministic basis. According to the recent Global Seismic Hazard Map (GSHAP), Phuentsholing Thromde (city) in Bhutan is likely to be exposed to the peak ground acceleration (PGA) between 0.20 g–0.28 g. This particular scenario highlights the likelihood of occurrence of stronger shaking; considering the proximity of active seismic faults. To this end, we performed one-dimensional (1D) ground response analysis in eight different locations considering earthquakes with a wide variation of PGA even beyond 0.2–0.28 g so as to quantify the possible seismic response of soil strata under wide range of ground shaking. Sensitivity analysis is performed by a statistical correlation function to correlate the ground motion parameters for different earthquake shaking intensities. The amplification responses of the local soil from each input motion are projected to predict seismic hazard scenarios that highlight the ground shaking response for some locations in Phuentsholing, Bhutan, which is one of the densest urban centers in the country. The study highlights the critical range of the fundamental natural period roughly between 0.9 s to ~5.0 s with the highest range of seismic wave amplification between ~2.8 to 6.2 due to the local ground conditions, suggesting a likely aggravation during earthquakes that may lead to severe consequences especially in terms of infrastructure damages.

Karma Tempa et al.

Status: final response (author comments only)

Comment types: AC – author | RC – referee | CC – community | EC – editor | CEC – chief editor | : Report abuse
  • RC1: 'Comment on nhess-2021-279', Anonymous Referee #1, 14 Nov 2021
  • RC2: 'Comment on nhess-2021-279', Anonymous Referee #2, 04 Dec 2021

Karma Tempa et al.

Karma Tempa et al.

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Short summary
This paper performs site response analysis and studies soil amplification for Bhutan Himalaya. Sensitivity study is performed to assess the effect of variation in strong ground motion.
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