Tips to construct Earthquake proof Buildings

Natural disasters such as earthquakes cause so much destruction and havoc especially when they measure high on the Richter scale. Fortunately, technology has advanced enough to allow us to build structures that are resistant to earthquakes. An earthquake-resistant building has a specialised design using carefully measured dimensions, layout and building materials that are coupled with certain building regulations that have to be met. These norms are decided according to the seismic activity in that area.
Seismic engineering is a branch of engineering which analyses and builds structures so that they may withstand the impact of an earthquake. Here are some useful tips you can use to check whether your building is earthquake-proof.

Building geometry

Dome shaped structures are very resistant to seismic activity

Structurally speaking, most walls are built perpendicular to each other. According to studies, buildings with proportionate symmetry can withstand tremors the best. This is why most of the buildings in areas with high seismic activity are connected perpendicularly and are highly symmetrical.
A structural engineer and architect should design the layout of the building such that the structure remains standing and keeps its inhabitants safe while facing the impact of earthquakes and other natural disasters. Dome-shaped structures are usually the most preferred choices in such cases.


The mass of a building should be evenly distributed

The seismic activity is concentrated more as the height and weight of the building increases. Lightweight building materials decrease the overall mass, thereby reducing the impact on the building. The structure should be designed so that the mass is uniformly distributed throughout the building and can absorb the vibration caused by an earthquake. A building should be taut enough to not succumb against the impact but flexible enough not to collapse, stretch or contract due to this groundbreaking impact.

Quality of building materials

The quality of building materials makes a huge difference to the longevity of a structure

The quality of building materials cannot be compromised especially in earthquake-prone areas. All the materials should be certified based on quality. During an earthquake, the building should behave as a single entity, displaying overall uniformity. It is this total unification of the materials of a single structure that allow it to be resistant to tremors or an earthquake. The materials should have the capacity to absorb the impact and dissipate it as required.

Ground stability

Certain zones are prone to earthquakes

The location is also very crucial when it comes to constructing a building. Certain areas are prone to earthquakes or have been recorded to have high seismic activity. These “zones” are under high risk and the government has adhered some strict building regulations while constructing structures in these areas. The ground should be stable enough to not split or cause land and mudslides during excessive seismic activity. A soil engineer or specialist will able to determine the nature of the soil and give advice on the kind of design that should be used in the layout of buildings in such areas.

Structural Configuration of Building

The layout of the building should be clean and orderly

It is wrong to assume that a lightweight foundation will be able to hold up a heavier substructure. The building design should ensure continuity on all levels of the construction system. Chaos in the structural configuration can end up causing the building to collapse during natural disasters.

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