The GeoNet building instrumentation programme


  • S.R. Uma GNS Science, Lower Hutt, New Zealand
  • Andrew King GNS Science, Lower Hutt, New Zealand
  • Jim Cousins GNS Science, Lower Hutt, New Zealand
  • Ken Gledhill GNS Science, Lower Hutt, New Zealand



In New Zealand, the performance of instrumented structures has rarely been tested by earthquake events with design-level motions to enable verification of the code design recommendations and related design assumptions. In the Darfield event, Rutherford building at the University of Canterbury was the only instrumented building that recorded its earthquake response. Lessons from overseas earthquakes, in particular the 1994 Northridge event, have demonstrated the invaluable use of information from instrumented buildings. In order to derive similar benefits from any future New Zealand events, steps were initiated to install modern digital accelerographs in structures. The new building instrumentation programme aims to install earthquake strong-motion instruments within up to 30 structures (mainly buildings and bridges) across New Zealand so as to measure their responses to future earthquake-induced ground motions. This article describes the objective of the instrumentation programme, highlighting the expected benefits to various end-users, the progress made so far and the future scope of the ongoing programme.


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How to Cite

Uma, S., King, A., Cousins, J., & Gledhill, K. (2011). The GeoNet building instrumentation programme. Bulletin of the New Zealand Society for Earthquake Engineering, 44(1), 53–63.