Seismicity and seismic hazard in Hungary

The Carpathian basin is located between the seismically active Mediterranean area and the nearly aseismic East European platform. Its tectonics is determined by the counterclockwise rotation of the Adria microplate and the north-northeast directed movement originating from the rotation. On the whole, seismicity of the area can be characterized as moderate. Distribution of the earthquakes, however, is not homogeneous: there are significant differences between the seismic activity of the surrounding mountain areas and of the inner part of the Pannonian basin. The most active areas of the region are the Southern Alps, the North-West Dinarides and the Vrancea zone. Seismicity is remarkable at the Mur-Mürz-zone running from Mura valley to the western Carpathians; significant seismic activity can be seen in the eastern Carpathians (mainly in Maramureş region) and in Banat, that can be found in the southern part of the Carpathian basin.


Earthquake map

Earthquakes in and around the Carpathian basin between 456 and 2006. Symbols are proportional to Richter magnitude. (Topography: USGS)


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Earthquake hazard maps serve as a basis for seismic risk analysis and earthquake resistant design. The seismic hazard map of Hungary was computed by probabilistic method where the uncertainties were taken into account by logic tree methodology. Accordig to the requirements of Eurocode 8 earthquake safety standard, the map shows the horizontal peak ground acceleration (PGA) with 90% probability of non-exceedance in 50 years, that is with a return period of 475 years.



Seismic hazard map

Seismic hazard map of Hungary computed for 475 years return period. PGA values were computed for bedrock and are expressed in m/s2.