Performance of Medium-to-High Rise Reinforced Concrete Frame Buildings with Masonry Infill in the 2015 Gorkha, Nepal, Earthquake

Andre R. Barbosa, Larry A. Fahnestock, Damon R. Fick, Dipendra Gautam, Rajendra Soti, Richard Wood, Babak Moaveni, Andreas Stavridis, Michael J. Olsen, Hugo Rodrigues

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

Abstract

Following the 25 April 2015 Mw 7.8 Gorkha, Nepal, earthquake and subsequent aftershocks, field surveys were conducted on medium-to-high rise reinforced concrete (RC) frame buildings with masonry infill located in the Kathmandu Valley. Rapid visual assessment, ambient vibration testing, and ground-based lidar (GBL) showed that these buildings suffered damage ranging from light to severe, where damage occurred in both structural and nonstructural elements, but was most prevalent in nonstructural masonry infills. Finite-element structural analyses of selected buildings corroborate field observations of only modest structural damage. The lack of severe structural damage in this relatively limited class of engineered medium-to-high rise RC infill frame buildings illustrates the impact of modern seismic design standards and stands in stark contrast to the severe damage and collapse observed in low-rise nonengineered RC infill frame buildings. Nonetheless, the nonstructural damage hindered many of these buildings from being occupied for many months following the earthquake and subsequent aftershocks.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)S197-S218
JournalEarthquake Spectra
Volume33
Issue numberSpecial issue 1
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 2017

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geotechnical Engineering and Engineering Geology
  • Geophysics

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