This paper describes the results of a study of the seismic micro-zonation of Delhi. It presents a summary of the study with respect to geological characteristics, geotechnical investigation, earthquake climate, analysis of site response, and assessment of liquefaction potential. The various site response analyses results characteristics are plotted in the form of contours over the Delhi map in order to show the local effects of soil on earthquake response. The analysis shows that the region is seismically active and that the SE area of Delhi is vulnerable to severe ground motion when the area is subjected to an earthquake of magnitude 7.0. The belt along the Yamuna river in the Eastern part of Delhi is liquefiable during earthquakes. The paper presents the major findings of the study and highlights the further scope of the study.


Earthquakes occasionally shake Delhi, the capital of India, and the surrounding regions. Being densely populated with high rise structures, the damage during any anticipated earthquake of, say, Magnitude 7.0 would be expected to be very heavy. This study attempts to identify the areas of Delhi at risk during these devastating earthquakes. The approach outlined in Poulos (1993) and in ISSMFE (1993) has been adopted here for the Delhi microzonation study. Since the accuracy of the results depends upon the data used in the analysis, considerable efforts were made to collect appropriate geological, geotechnical and seismicity data from various institutions and organizations in India, as well as from other countries. For this study the area has been divided into square cells, each measuring 3km × 3km (Figure 1). The following sections present a summary of the study with respect to geological characteristics, geotechnical investigations, earthquake study, analysis of site response and assessment of liquefaction potential for each cell in the Delhi region.

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