Structural simplicity

Structural simplicity implies that a clear and direct path for the transmission of the seismic Clause

forces is available. The seismic forces are associated with the different masses of a structure which are set in motion by its dynamic response to the seismic excitation. In buildings, an important part of their mass is located in the floor elements which act simultaneously as originators of the horizontal seismic forces and also as the elements that apply these forces to the vertical elements. These, in turn, have to transmit the forces to the ground at the foundation level.

Bearing in mind that, even for well-designed structures, a large-intensity earthquake will always be an extreme event which has the potential to drive the structure to its limits and to reveal all hidden weaknesses and defects, simple structures are at an advantage because their modelling, analysis, dimensioning, detailing and construction are subject to much less uncertainty and thus their seismic behaviour is much more consistent.

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