Seismology to Earthquake Engineering


This course ranges from the earth structure, the generation of earthquakes and seismic waves by faults to the seismic response of soils, foundations and structures as well as seismic risk. It is consequently aimed at undergraduates, graduates and professionals interested in engineering seismology, earthquake engineering or seismic risk. It investigates various technical fields: rock mechanics, soil dynamics, structural dynamics and dynamic soil-structure interaction.

Various types of sessions are proposed: regular sessions describing a phenomenon or explaining its basic principles, lab sessions illustrating concepts through simple experiments (fault motion, liquefaction, resonant column tests, shaking table tests) and research topics focusing on advanced topics from various research fields (e.g. magnet-Earth, seismicity of Mars, seismic sensors, probabilistic approaches). Several quizzes, as well as 3 mini-projects, will allow you to check your knowledge and assess your understanding of the various topics.

What you will learn

Week 1 – Seismicity and faults

The first week allows to discover the Earth structure, the plate tectonics, the behaviour of faults in the crust and the radiation of seismic waves. The seismicity of the Earth is studied and that of Mars is shown as well! The control of faults and the magnetic properties of the Earth are finally explained.

Week 2 – Seismic waves and ground motion

Various types of seismic waves are presented through both actual observations and theoretical interpretation. Their propagation and amplification in heterogeneous geological structures are discussed (soil layers, alluvial basins). The application to site characterization is finally proposed.

Week 3 – Seismic response of soil and structures

The seismic soil response is analyzed first. The simplified soil response is then converted into a so-called response spectrum for sake of seismic design. The seismic response of structures is discussed through eigenmodes, modal superposition and modal recombination. Seismic isolation and in situ dynamic characterization of structures is also presented.

Week 4 – Complex structures and non linearities

Dynamic Soil-Structure Interaction and Soil-Foundation-Structure Interaction are presented first. Typical nonlinear behaviours of structures are then analyzed. The seismic response of structures is finally discussed through simplified (e.g. push-over) and time history nonlinear analyses.

What’s included