Terp composition in respect to earthquake risk in Groningen

Erik Meijles, Gerard Aalbersberg, Hendrik Groenendijk

Research output: Book/ReportReportProfessional

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Introduction & aim NAM is developing a hazard model for induced seismicity resulting from gas production from the Groningen gas field. The aim of this model is to reliably predict ground motions (peak ground accelerations; PGA) at the surface. Detailed knowledge of the shallow sub-surface is essential to estimate ground motions and the local variability in the ground motions. Although the recently developed GeoTOP model is a detailed reflection of the shallow geology, there is lack of data for the terps (dwelling mound; regionally called “wierde”) in the area covered. The terps are currently mapped as small single geological surface units and are classified as of “anthropogenic composition”. This is also the case for terps on the current geomorphological and soil maps. However, the composition of terps could be an important factor in determining the nature of earthquake impacts on buildings situated on these mounds. Some terps appear to have significantly more house damages than other terps in the direct surroundings, which may indicate a substantial difference in composition, and therefore different effects on PGAs. Although the total area of the terps in the province of Groningen is limited, they are high in number and are important residential areas as well as areas with high archaeological and cultural historical heritage values. From archaeological observations, we know that the lithology of the terps is very heterogeneous. Therefore, there is a need to establish the lithology, geometry and elevation of the terps in order to be able to assess earthquake impacts. The aim of the project is to establish an assessment of the lithological composition and geometry of terps in the province of Groningen. We provide a database with modelled texture classes of the clastic sediment component of all terps in Groningen. We also provide micro-scale data on anthropogenic lithology of a selection of terps in the province. The methodology, results and conclusions will be described in this report and we provide recommendations for further work we find useful or necessary.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages49
Publication statusPublished - Mar-2016


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