Factors influencing the lateral spread displacement from the 2011 Christchurch, New Zealand earthquake
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Liquefaction induced lateral spreading during earthquakes poses a significant hazard to infrastructure and has severe consequences. It is critical for geotechnical earthquake engineers to be able to accurately predict lateral spread movements. Empirical and semi-empirical models and various liquefaction index parameters are available to help predict the potential for damage and movements associated with liquefaction and lateral spreading. In this thesis, the available models and liquefaction index parameters were investigated using the observed lateral spread displacements from the Christchurch earthquake in New Zealand. The analysis includes investigation of the Youd et al. (2002), Bardet et al. (2002), Rauch and Martin (2000) and Zhang et al. (2004) displacement models; and the liquefaction potential index (LPI), settlement indicator (Sv1d) and liquefaction severity number (LSN) parameters. The results of this study show that both the Youd et al. (2002) and Bardet et al. (2002) models predict lateral spread displacements much smaller than observed in Christchurch, most likely due to the relatively small magnitude of the Christchurch earthquake (M[subscript w] = 6.2) relative to the earthquake magnitudes included in datasets used to develop the Youd et al. (2002) and Bardet et al. (2002) models (i.e., Mw >= 7.5). The Rauch and Martin (2000) and Zhang et al. (2004) models predicted lateral spread displacements more similar to those observed. The Rauch and Martin (2000) model predicts the average lateral spread displacement over an entire slide area, as opposed to predicting lateral spread displacement at a point, which may have contributed to the more favorable comparison.