Response Study of a Tall San Diego, California Building Inferred from the M7.1 July 5, 2019 Ridgecrest, California Earthquake Motions

Mehmet Çelebi1, *, Daniel Swensen2
1 Earthquake Science Center, United States Geological Survey, California, USA
2 California Strong Motion Instrumentation Program, Department of Conservation's California Geological Survey, California, USA

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© 2022 Çelebi et al.

open-access license: This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International Public License (CC-BY 4.0), a copy of which is available at: This license permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

* Address correspondence to this author at Earthquake Science Center, United States Geological Survey, California, USA; E-mail:


The shaking of a new 24-story tall building in San Diego, California, was recorded by its seismic monitoring array during the M7.1 Ridgecrest, California earthquake of July 5, 2019. The building is located ~340 km from the epicenter of the event. The building is a special moment framed (SMF) steel structure with reduced beam sections (RBS) and viscous damper systems (DS). Peak accelerations recorded by the array indicate 0.007 g at the basement level and 0.044 g at the roof level. Spectral analyses and system identification methods indicate coupled NS, EW, and torsinal fundamental modes at ~ 0.30 Hz frequency and critical damping percentages < 5%. For the EW and fundamental torsional modes, critical damping percentages are < 2.5%. At the low-level shaking, the computed largest average drift ratio is ~ 0.065%, less than 0.5% of the value considered to be the starting threshold of nonlinear behavior or damage.

Keywords: Tall buildings, Earthquake, Critical damping percentages, Drift ratio, Starting threshold, Non-linear.