On the Nonstructural Elements and Their Behavior in the Bam Earthquake of 26 December 2003

Document Type : Structural Earthquake Engineering




Regarding the importance of the nonstructural elements in the vulnerability of buildings, and the extensive damages of some of these elements in recent earthquakes, particularly the Bam event, in this paper at first the characteristics of nonstructural elements are briefly reviewed, with emphasis on the Iranian buildings; then the seismic design, vulnerability, and upgrading of these elements are explained and discussed as a state-of-the-art review; and finally, the results of a thorough survey performed on the behavior of and the damages sustained by these elements, particularly the architectural ones, in the city of Bam because of the December26, 2003 earthquake are presented. Finally, based on the results of this survey some recommendations are made which can be useful for modification of the "Guidelines for the Seismic Retrofit of the Existing Buildings", which is used presently in the country as the only official reference in this regard.