This paper deals with a seismic diagnosis of monastery of St. Stepanos that is UNESCO world heritage in east Azerbaijan, Iran. An oldest buildings of monastery of St. Stepanos was built in tenth century and most of buildings are masonry structures. Several kinds of in situ tests such as microtremor measurements, shear wave velocity measurements, etc. were conducted around the monastery to estimate dynamic characteristics of the site. Microtremor measurements of a church and tower of the monastery ware also performed to estimate dynamic characteristics of the buildings. Then, a strong ground motion of a scenario earthquake was predicted by using the stochastic green function method. Scenario earthquake fault is assumed as North Tabriz fault in this study. Finally, we evaluate safety of the monastery for the scenario earthquake.

1 Introduction

The monastery of St. Stepanos is located 15km west of Jolfa, near Darresham village in Aras Kenar rural district and 6km from Aras River in Iran (See Figure 1). The monastery was registered as the UNESCO world's heritage in 2008 as Armenian monastery structure group. An oldest buildings of Monastery of St. Stepanos was built in tenth century. The monastery of St. Stepanos is situated an earthquake prone area and has experienced several strong earthquakes in the past. Historical masonry structures such as the monastery of St. Stepanos have suffered damage from an earthquake occurred at some countries in the earthquake prone areas in the world. Since the historical masonry buildings must be survived from the future large earthquakes, vulnerability assessment to earthquake and its strengthening are indispensable. It is in importance to estimate not only the strength of buildings but also magnitude of possible ground motion due to a scenario earthquake in the vulnerability assessment.

The purpose of this study is to examine the dynamic characteristics of the surface ground at the monastery using shear wave velocity measurements method, and to discuss about the seismic characteristic of the monastery of St. Stepanos using microtremor measurements of the ground and structure. Furthermore, strong ground motion prediction at the monastery is tried.

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