2nd Workshop on Best PSHANI – May 2018, Cadarache-Château, France



Conducting adequate assessment of seismic hazard is one of the essential issues in the external event safety for site evaluation of nuclear installations. Vibratory ground motion and surface fault displacement are the main hazards of seismic activities, and they need to be assessed in the processes of site evaluation and periodical safety reviews. However, progress of the science and technology of this subject is quite fast and the state-of-the-art practices have to be taken into account in the hazard assessment.

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There is an increasing awareness that physics-based models, previously verified with observed records, provide meaningful approach to evaluate predictions on areas that go beyond the range of recorded data, specially near the source, where observed data are sparse and ground motion is dominated by the source. In particular, physics-based fault rupture modelling was highlighted and international efforts in the industry, regulatory bodies and relevant institutions from the nuclear community have been bestowed on the modelling method after the accident in Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant in 2011. The reason for this is because the length and width of fault rupture of “the 2011 off the Pacific Coast of Tohoku Earthquake” reached several hundred kilometers and it turned out to be necessary to consider rupture modelling of inhomogeneous crust.

The relevant IAEA Specific Safety Guide SSG-9 on “Seismic Hazards in Site Evaluation for Nuclear Installations” (2010, IAEA) has certain recommendations for physics-based fault rupture modelling. However, the descriptions about such modelling are at the high level of general recommendations, thus the Member States, who want to apply the modelling, need more detailed guideline. Therefore, with the supports and contributions of Member States, the External Events Safety Section of the IAEA has been conducting Extra-budgetary Project (EBP), one of the results of which is the publication of a Safety Report Series No. 85 “Ground Motion Simulation Based on Fault Rupture Modelling for Seismic Hazard Assessment in Site Evaluation for Nuclear Installations” (2015, IAEA).

To disseminate these practices for the seismic hazard assessment in site evaluation of nuclear installations, the IAEA held the first workshop of BestPSHANI in November 2015 (Proceedings published by the IAEA) About 100 participants from 30 member states participated in the workshop that included several invited keynote lectures that inspired valuable and fruitful discussions among all the participants. In this workshop, several key issues were identified and the participants concluded to encourage the international nuclear safety community to catch up the state-of-the-art practices, to assess procedures for verification and validation of numerical models, to discuss crosscutting issues with empirical schemes such as Ground Motion Prediction Equations, to assess the implications (from nuclear safety point of view) on the use of synthetic ground motion on engineering structures and to challenge the use of these models toward seismic risk analyses of nuclear installations.

The second BestPSHANI workshop is planned being fully in line with these above-mentioned developments, discussions and challenges in order to provide suggestions to the identified issues in the first workshop. The Commissariat à l’énergie atomique et aux énergies alternatives (CEA), France, donor institution of the EBP kindly will host the workshop in Cadarache, southern France. CEA has been coordinating a national project “SINAPS@” to explore seismic hazard assessment issues, as well as to challenge interface topics (e.g. non-linear soil and structure interactions, structural and components seismic vulnerability) towards full seismic risk analysis. The SINAPS@ project also addresses the uncertainties treatment and propagation in the risk approach especially through probabilistic tools enabling to better characterize the reliability of results. CEA also wishes to contribute to the EESS-EBP. Inspired resolutions in the second workshop will be a great contribution to update the Safety Guide SSG-9 to reflect the state-of-the-art practices.


The goal of this second BestPSHANI workshop is to investigate the uses of ground motions calculated using either empirical or physics-based models in seismic hazard assessments. This workshop will also focus on the assessments of engineering issues that rely on ground motion estimates, such as soil structure interaction, structural response and fragility curve analysis for quantification of seismic vulnerability of structures and their seismic performance.  Hence, this second workshop aims to broaden the discussion by incorporating some additional key technical issues that reside at the intersection of physical-empirical models and the corresponding engineering applications.
The workshop will gather scientist, engineers, and practitioners with the final goal of providing practical guidance for seismic hazard analyses and engineering applications.


The workshop aims to discuss the state of the art of ground motion prediction models for seismic hazard assessment and the engineering applications to evaluate the seismic safety of NIs, covering three main topics:

  • Current practice on the use of empirical ground motion prediction models for seismic hazard assessment in nuclear installations: Ground Motion Prediction Equations (GMPEs), uncertainties evaluations, “Host to Target” methodologies for exporting GMPEs, future perspectives on GMPEs and limitations.
  • Physics-based rupture models for ground motion and fault displacement prediction: the role of stochastic, kinematic and dynamic rupture modes; verifications and validations procedures; limitations; when, how and why to use them; data collection for source, path and site characterization to constraint models; new generation of hybrid models: empirical and physics-based ground motion prediction equations.
  • Engineering interface: on the reliability of ground motion evaluation for engineering applications; procedures for ground motion selection and generation for soil structure interaction, structural response and fragility cure developments; numerical and experimental tests of structural response to validate ground motion models and evaluate structural properties through specific proxies(damping, natural frequency, etc); Guidelines for design and assessments of safety of existing NIs, with potential specificities.

Key Speakers

This workshop will be supported by invited presentations specially dedicated to the topics mentioned above.

Key speakers are :

Current practice on the use of ground motion prediction models

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  • Norman Abrahamson (PG&E, USA)
  • Gail Atkinson (UWO, Canada)
  • Fabrice Cotton (GFZ, Germany)
  • Hiroyuki Fujiwara (NIED, Japan)

Physics-based rupture models for ground motion and fault displacement prediction

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  • Ralph Archuleta (UCSB, USA)
  • Hideo Aochi (BRGM, France)
  • Roberto Paolucci (Politecnico di Milano, Italy)
  • Makoto Takao (Tokyo Electric Power Company, Japan)

Engineering interface:

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  • Muneo Hori (ERI, Tokyo, Japan)
  • Boris Jeremic (University of California at Davis and Lawrence Berkeley National Lab, USA)
  • Pierre Labbe (EDF, France)

In addition to the invited speakers, other contributions on the topics mentioned above are welcomed. Therefore, any participant willing to present his/her work orally or in the form of a poster should submit an abstract (max 300 words). After acceptance of the abstract and the type of presentation (oral or poster), participants are encouraged to submit a full paper with the Form for Submission of a Paper (Form B).

For interested participants, in order to enhance the importance of the discussions during the workshop, a field trip to the Cadarache facilities will be organized the day after the workshop: details on this field trip will be updated soon.

Publication of Papers

Papers submitted to this workshop will be invited for a publication in a PAGEOPH Topical Volume and corresponding book version. The selected papers will be subjected to the PAGEOPH peer review process.

The publication of the Topical Volume will follow the same process as the Topical Report published after the first BestPSHANI workshop held in 2015. That report is now available as Vol. 174, N. 9, 2017



IAEA Scientific Secretary

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Mr Yoshimitsu Fukushima

External Events Safety SectionDivision of Nuclear Installation Safety

Department of Nuclear Safety and Security

International Atomic Energy Agency

Vienna International Centre

PO Box 100



Scientific Organizing Committee

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Mr Luis A. Dalguer (Chair)

Adjunct professor at Aichi Institute of Technology


Ms Catherine Berge-Thierry (Co-chair)

Commissariat à l’énergie atomique et aux énergies alternatives (CEA), France

Séisme et Installation Nucléaire – Améliorer et Pérenniser la Sûreté (SINAPS@), project coordinator


Mr Fabrice Hollender

Commissariat à l’énergie atomique et aux énergies alternatives (CEA), Cadarache, France


Mr Kojiro Irikura

Aichi Institute of Technology, Japan


Mr Philippe Renault

swissnuclear, Switzerland


Mr Dogan Seber

Nuclear Regulatory Commission, USA


Mr Changjiang Wu

Nuclear Regulation Authority, Japan


Local contact

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Ms Marion BARD

Commissariat à l’énergie atomique et aux énergies alternatives (CEA)


Working Language

The working language of the workshop will be English.