Factors influencing the behavior of buried pipelines subjected to earthquake faulting

Tarek H. Abdoun, Da Ha, Michael J. O'Rourke, Michael D. Symans, Thomas D. O'Rourke, Michael C. Palmer, Harry E. Stewart

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Seismic ground faulting is a severe hazard for continuous buried pipelines. Over the years, researchers have attempted to understand pipe behavior, most frequently via numerical modeling and simulation. However, there has been little, if any, physical modeling and tests to verify the numerical modeling approaches and assumptions. This paper presents results of five pairs of centrifuge tests designed to investigate the influence of various factors on the behavior of buried high-density polyethylene (HDPE) pipelines subjected to strike-slip faulting. Parameters considered are the soil moisture content, fault offset rate, relative burial depth (H/D), and pipe diameter. The centrifuge test results show that pipe behavior, specifically pipe strain, is nominally not affected by the soil moisture content and fault offset rate when the pipe is subjected to strike-slip faulting. On the other hand, the burial depth ratio (H/D) and pipe diameter influence peak pipe strain, and in some cases, the ground soil failure pattern.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)415-427
Number of pages13
JournalSoil Dynamics and Earthquake Engineering
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2009


  • Buried pipeline
  • Centrifuge
  • Fault offset rate
  • Influencing parameters
  • Permanent ground deformation
  • Pipe diameter
  • Relative burial ratio
  • Soil moisture content

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Geotechnical Engineering and Engineering Geology
  • Soil Science


Dive into the research topics of 'Factors influencing the behavior of buried pipelines subjected to earthquake faulting'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this