Probabilistic seismic hazard analysis - An introduction to theoretical basis and applied methodology

Student: Jessica Godinho
Supervisors: Dr Apostolos Papageorgiou


Probabilistic seismic hazard analysis (PSHA) is a method used to evaluate seismic hazard by computing the probability of a specified level of ground motion being exceeded at a site or area of interest. This article presents the basic methodologies of PSHA in an attempt to provide a clear and concise introduction into the theoretical basis and application of PSHA in engineering practice today. Various models commonly applied in PSHA are introduced and discussed, including methods for describing source geometry, source seismicity, and ground motion attenuation. Common assumptions made in PSHA, specifically for magnitude and temporal distributions, are also presented and analyzed, providing insight into the validity of each assumption for different source and site scenarios. Additionally, the mathematical framework for hazard computations is presented in a closed analytical form providing an efficient tool for engineers and decision-makers to easily extract information for assessing seismic risk.

You may download a digital version of this MSc dissertation here.