Shaky engineering

 作者:平捅酷     |      日期:2019-02-27 14:06:01
LAST year’s Kobe earthquake exposed Japanese earthquake engineering as fundamentally flawed, says a leading Japanese architect. The Kobe quake produced vertical, horizontal and twisting movements at the same time. “None of our engineering models ever looked at such a situation before, so we had no idea how buildings and other structures were going to react,” says Yoshiteru Murosaki of Kobe University. And while office blocks and hotels are designed to withstand earthquakes, most Japanese homes are more vulnerable than they were a hundred years ago, says Murosaki in the Red Cross’s latest World Disasters Report, published this week. “About a hundred universities in Japan teach earthquake engineering and architecture, but I know of only one or two that teach anything about wooden house design. Yet 80 per cent of Japanese people live in wooden houses,” he says. Until a century ago, Japanese wood-framed houses had loose joints that allowed for movement. Then, says Murosaki, “we started using European wooden building techniques with braces and tie bars to create a rigid structure”. Such structures are more vulnerable during major quakes such as the Kobe quake,