Base Shear

Base shear is an estimate of the maximum expected lateral force that will occur due to seismic ground motion at the base of a structure. Calculations of base shear (V) depend on:

  • soil conditions at the site

  • proximity to potential sources of seismic activity (such as geological faults)

  • probability of significant seismic ground motion

  • the level of ductility and overstrength associated with various structural configurations and the total weight of the structure

  • the fundamental (natural) period of vibration of the structure when subjected to dynamic loading