Measured response of instrumented buildings during the 2013 Cook Strait earthquake sequence
With the recent high level of earthquake activity throughout New Zealand there is growing awareness of the need for quick and reliable determination of whether buildings are safe. In parallel, on-going advances in sensors and computing technology have resulted in the potential for new and innovative sensing systems which could change the way that civil infrastructure is monitored, controlled and maintained.
Following the 21 July 2013, MW 6.5 Cook Strait earthquakes, seven buildings in the Wellington region were instrumented with low-cost accelerometers to record building response data sets during aftershock excitations. A summary of the data analyses and insightful information obtained through processing and interpretation of the raw data is presented. Key challenges and considerations of installing a permanent structural monitoring system into buildings in New Zealand are discussed. The goal was to relate building performance indicators to decision making processes regarding the safety and resilience of structures post-earthquake. The information obtained was sufficiently reliable and valuable to the decision making process and New Zealand can expect more permanently instrumented buildings in the future.
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