The interaction of lateral structural inertia forces with horizontal seismic motion is formulated in terms of an integral equation of the Volterra type. By means of normal mode theory the inertia force at the base of the structure is expressed as a function of the foundation motion. After the motion of the two-dimensional elastic half space resulting from a uniform horizontal foundation force varying arbitrarily with time over a specified interval on the boundary of the half space has been determined, the interaction equation is derived. Numerical studies for two free-field acceleration inputs are made for different ground stiffnesses and structural characteristics. The first of these free-field inputs is a ramp sine function and the second is the east-west ground acceleration recorded at Golden Gate Park during the 1957 San Francisco earthquake. The interaction effects for structures similar to nuclear power plants prove to be significant.

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