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Ljubljana, Slovenia

Gosar A.,EARS | Gosar A.,University of Ljubljana | Lenart A.,Jozef Stefan Institute
Bulletin of Earthquake Engineering | Year: 2010

The Ljubljana Moor basin is characterized by moderate bedrock topography and thicknesses of Quaternary lacustrine and fluvial sediments ranging from 0 to 200 m. More than 65 boreholes which reached the bedrock were drilled in the area, but their distribution in the basin is very uneven and some data from the boreholes uncertain. There are also no data on S-velocity distribution within the basin, but seismic refraction measurements pointed out a rather uniform increase of P-velocity with depth, great impedance contrast with the bedrock and relatively small lateral velocity variations. The microtremor horizontal-to-vertical spectral ratio (HVSR) method was therefore applied as a complementary tool to seismic refraction survey to map the thickness of sediments. First, microtremors were measured at the locations of boreholes which reached the bedrock and the resonance frequencies determined. The inverse power relationship between the resonance frequency and the thickness of sediments was then determined from 53 data pairs. The quality of the correlation is moderate due to possible heterogeneities in sediments and possible 3D effects in some minor areas, but the obtained parameters correspond well to the values obtained in six other European basins. Secondly, a 16 km-long discontinuous seismic refraction profile was measured across the whole basin, leaving uncovered some larger segments where active seismic measurements were not possible. Microtremors were then measured at 64 locations along the same profile, using 250 m point spacing, without leaving any gaps. The frequency-thickness relationship was used to invert resonance frequencies to depths. These were first validated using the results of the seismic refraction survey, which showed good agreement, and finally used for interpolation in the segments of missing refraction data to obtain a continuous depth profile of the bedrock. The study has shown that the microtremor method can be used as a complementary tool for mapping the thickness of unconsolidated sediments also in areas characterized by moderate bedrock topography. As the input data are always to some extent uncertain, it is important to have a sufficiently large number of borehole data to establish a frequency-thickness relationship, as well as some additional independent geophysical information for its validation. © Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2009.

Magri C.J.,Diabetes and Endocrine Center | Farrugia E.,EARS | Fava S.,Diabetes and Endocrine Center
Infectious Diseases in Clinical Practice | Year: 2010

Rhinocerebral mucormycosis (RCM) is an increasingly common infection in immunocompromised subjects. We report a case of RCM in an immunosuppressed gentleman known to suffer from sigmoid colon adenocarcinoma stage D and presenting with diabetic ketoacidosis, complete ptosis, and orbital cellulitis. During his hospital stay, the patient developed cranial diabetes insipidus. In spite of extensive surgical debridement and high-dose liposomal amphotericin, the disease had a fatal outcome. This case emphasizes the need for increased awareness of mucormycosis as a potentially lethal fungal infection requiring a high index of suspicion in subjects at risk. The case also illustrates a rare complication of RCM, namely diabetes insipidus. © 2010 by Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.

Gosar A.,EARS | Gosar A.,University of Ljubljana | Roser J.,University of Ljubljana | Motnikar B.S.,EARS | Zupancic P.,EARS
Bulletin of Earthquake Engineering | Year: 2010

The city of Ljubljana is located in one of the three areas with the highest seismic hazard in Slovenia, and it is also the most densely populated. Site effects due to Quaternary sediments, which fill the up to 200 m-deep basin, are characteristic of the whole city area, but they can be especially strong in the southern part of Ljubljana, which is built on very soft lacustrine deposits. Existing microzonation studies of the city are inadequate, since there is a lack of borehole, geophysical and earthquake data. The microtremor horizontal-to-vertical spectral ratio (HVSR) method was therefore applied to a 200 m dense grid of free-field measurements over an area of 45 km2 (1,223 measuring points) in order to assess the fundamental frequency of the sediments. The main difficulties in microtremor measurement arose from high levels of traffic and industrial noise, and from underground structures. Experimental conditions which can influence data quality, such as strong wind and water saturation of soil, were analysed. Very clear HVSR peaks were obtained in the entire southern part of the city, whereas in the northern part the site response is in general lower due to lower impedance contrast of gravel with the bedrock. The iso-frequency map of sediments shows a distribution in the range of 0.9-10 Hz. In the southern part of Ljubljana, sediment frequency correlates well with the thickness of soft sediments known from geophysical investigations and sparse drilling. Average amplitude of the HVSR peaks is considerably higher in the southern part (6.7 ± 2.4) than in the northern part (4.0 ± 2.0) of the city, indicating a high impedance contrast of lacustrine sediments with the bedrock. Microtremor measurements were also performed inside 122 buildings of various heights. We focused on important public buildings and selected blocks of flats and houses. To assess the longitudinal and transverse fundamental frequencies of each building, amplitude spectra and the spectral ratio between the upper floor and the basement were analysed for both directions. When one of these frequencies is close to a nearby free-field fundamental frequency, a potential soil-structure resonance is present. This was found in 12 of the measured buildings. Three of them are tall residential buildings (from 10 to 15 floors) with a fundamental frequency of 2-3 Hz, and nine of them are low-rise buildings (from 3 to 5 floors) with a fundamental frequency ranging from 3 to 4.5 Hz. Using the relationship between fundamental frequency and height, the typical height of buildings that might cause soil-structure resonance can be estimated at a given sediment frequency obtained from free-field measurements. © Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2009.

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