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On November 11, 2019 a 4.9 magnitude (Mw) earthquake occurred at approximately 15 km from Cruas-Meysse NPP (called Le-Teil earthquake). Among all the NPPs in France, only the Cruas-Meysse NPP is built on seismic base isolation. This design concept was adopted in order to adapt the standard design of the French 900 MW NPP series to the seismic hazard evaluated at the site in the late 1970s. When the seismic waves reached the NPP site and in accordance with operational procedures, the ground and in-structure response was recorded. Moreover post-earthquake inspections and walkdowns were performed to collect in-situ data on various Structures, Systems and Components (SSCs).

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In this context, the SMATCH benchmark takes advantage of the occurrence of the Le-Teil earthquake and the recorded data to improve the scientific and engineering feedback of the earthquakes impact on seismically- isolated facilities. In particular, the objective of the SMATCH benchmark is to assess the efficiency of engineering practices for calculating (1) the seismic ground motion at the Cruas site and (2) the seismic response of the base-isolated Cruas NPP.

Organisation of tasks

Phase 1 : Benchmark announcement and participants registration

The organizers will define the program, the rules and the schedule of the benchmark. During this phase, participants should officially express their interest in participating in the benchmark and formalize their involvement in Phase 2 and/or Phase 3.

Phase 2 : Characterisation of the seismic ground motion at Cruas site

  • Stage 2.1 - Blind assessment : Participants will be invited to simulate the seismic motion at Cruas-Meysse during the Le-Teil earthquake given its characteristics (size, location, fault geometry).
  • Stage 2.2 - Calibration and best estimate assessment : Participants will be provided with the free field recordings and will be asked to address potential discrepancies between their results and the blind results of Stage 2.1 to improve the assessment of seismic ground motion.

Phase 3 : Assessment of the seismic response of Cruas base-isolated NPP

  • Stage 3.1 - Blind assessment : Participants will be asked to calculate the structural dynamic response of Cruas-Meysse NPP in terms of response spectra and accelerograms at the sensors.
  • Stage 3.2 - Calibration and best estimate assessment : The structural recordings will be provided to the participants and they will address potential discrepancies between their results and the blind results of Stage 3.1 to improve the assessment of the seismic response of the NPP.

Phase 4 : Synthesis, lessons learnt and recommendations

Main results and conclusions will be shared among participants in order to identify best practices dedicated to the seismic assessment of base-isolated NPPs



Workshop 1 : June 12 2023 4.30PM-7PM UTC+02:00 and June 14 2023 8.30AM-11AM UTC+02:00. You can choose to participate in either of those sessions, depending on your time zone.

Workshop 2 (Online) : February 2024 (date to be confirmed)

Workshop 3 (Online) : June 2024 (date to be confirmed)

Final Workshop (In-person) : November 2024 (date to be confirmed)


Please use the form below to register to the benchmark and specify in the “Comment” field if you want to be part of Phase 2, Phase 3 or both phases.


* : mandatory field

Steering committee


  • Julien Berger
  • Matthieu Caudron
  • Elias El Haber
  • Adrien Guilloux
  • Christelle Le Maitre
  • Emilie Leroux-Depalle
  • Jessie Mayor
  • Paola Traversa
  • Emmanuel Viallet
  • Irmela Zentner


  • Thomas Heitz
  • Maria Lancieri
  • Benjamin Richard


  • Miquel Huguet Aguilera
  • Simone De Troia

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