Can simple pulses adequately represent near-fault ground motions?

Rajesh Rupakhety*, Ragnar Sigbjörnsson

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

23 Citations (Scopus)


This article investigates the importance of higher modes in the elastic response of tall buildings subjected to near-fault ground motions. Building structures modeled as generic frames are analyzed using a large set of forward-directivity affected pulse-like ground-motion records. It is found that higher modes contribute significantly to peak interstory drifts at the upper portions of the buildings. The importance of higher modes increases as the height of the frame is increased. Equivalent pulses, often used to characterize structural response to near-fault ground motions, are found to underestimate peak interstory drifts at the roof level by a factor of 1.4.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1260-1272
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Earthquake Engineering
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2011

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The first author acknowledges a grant from the research fund of the University of Iceland supporting his doctoral studies. We are thankful to two anonymous reviewers for their constructive feedback.

Other keywords

  • Equivalent Pulse
  • Forward-directivity
  • Interstory Drift
  • Moment Resisting Frames
  • Near-fault Ground Motion


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