• 21 Cities Hold Seismic Surveying, 80 Active Faults Excluded


  • Peking University. Beijing. June 1, 2010: According to Xu Xiwei, deputy director of the Geological Institute of National Seismological Bureau, the major state scientific project “China’s Technological System of Active Faults ---- An Assessment of Active Faults and Seismic Risk in Large Cities” has been successfully completed recently. This project, which officially began in June 2004, explored and assessed the activity of faults from twenty-one cities and it has excluded eighty of which were once considered as active.


    As the chief expert of the project, Xu Xiwei told us that this project was carried out in twenty-one larges cities, including Beijing, Shanghai, Tianjin, Fuzhou, Shenyang and so on. According to Xu Xiwei, besides the twenty-one cities included in the project, the city of Hangzhou, Chongqing and eleven districts in the Hebei Province have completed or are currently running the project.


    Xu Xiwei explained that on the basis of years of scientific exploration and research, they have ascertained the places where the faults lie, the latest activity of the faults and the seismic risk of the twenty-one cities and their adjacent areas, and as a result, have excluded eighty faults which are located in cities such as Shanghai, Tianjin, Guangzhou, Shenyang and so on.


    Xu Xiwei said that in the detecting process, once the location of an active fault is found, we should analyze its seismic risk further. For example, if a fault has had two earthquakes in the last three-thousand years, once at three-thousand years ago and once at five hundred years ago, we can assume that the interval between the two earthquakes is twenty-five hundred years. He also explained the means of calculating the possibility of an earthquake. With such calculation, we can analyze the possible activity of faults and therefore exclude the faults which have no danger theoretically.


    Xu Xiwei pointed out that the China Seismological Bureau has officially launched the project of “An Assessment of Active Faults and Seismic Risk in Large Cities”, which aims to make assessments of the active faults of some large cities and the possibility of earthquakes, and thus will provide scientific basis for the layout and application of our territorial resources to reduce damages caused by earthquakes. He said that the project which identifies the accurate locations of faults will definitely help the construction of vital buildings and lifelines to avoid passing through the fault area. As for the buildings that have to pass through the area, we can take precautions to reduce damages caused by earthquakes.


    Translated by: Cao Yixing

    Edited by: Jennifer Yan

    Source: PKU News (Chinese)