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International Journal of Masonry Research and Innovation

International Journal of Masonry Research and Innovation (IJMRI)

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International Journal of Masonry Research and Innovation (42 papers in press)

Special Issue on: ArCo2020 New Approaches in Diagnostic and Safety Evaluation of Cultural Heritage

  •   Free full-text access Open AccessExperimental investigations on glass fibre reinforced composites with gypsum-earth matrix to strengthen the earth walls of the Noh-Gonbad Mosque in Balkh, Afghanistan
    ( Free Full-text Access ) CC-BY-NC-ND
    by Arash Boostani, Giulia Misseri, Luisa Rovero, Ugo Tonietti 
    Abstract: The Noh Gonbad mosque is an almost unknown masterpiece dated back to the 8th century, located near Balkh, North Afghanistan. The archaeological remains show different buildings techniques such as rammed earth (for portions perimeter walls), adobe masonry (for walls, niches and abutment of the arcades) and brick masonry with earth or gypsum mortar (for domes, arch and columns). The state of ruin required targeted intervention strategies for perimeter walls. The presence of collapse debris, and the possibility of their removal, would though increase, for the masonry portions, the vulnerability against overturning connected to the seismic hazard at the site. The reported experimental campaign focus on the identification of a fibre reinforced composite system aimed at jacketing perimeter walls. Tests address different matrix compositions compatible with the substrate, i.e., based on earth and gypsum. Results enable to highlight the effect that the composition has on the mechanical response.
    Keywords: earth material; gypsum; glass fibre reinforced composites; mechanical tests; abbassid period mosque; Balkh; Afghanistan.
    DOI: 10.1504/IJMRI.2022.10046885
  • Seismic assessment of historical buildings through multilevel approach: the complex of the 'Galleria dell'Accademia di Firenze'   Order a copy of this article
    by Mario De Stefano, Maria Teresa Cristofaro 
    Abstract: The historic centre of Firenze contains, in a relatively small area, works of art housed in buildings that are themselves considered of high artistic value. The earthquake of 18th May 1895, caused extensive but not serious damage to many historic buildings and museums in the city. The present work describes a comprehensive analysis of the seismic vulnerability and risk of the complex of the 'Galleria dell'Accademia di Firenze', where several art works are exhibited, such as the Michelangelos David. These assessments were preceded by a diagnostic campaign in order to reach a Level of Knowledge and therefore an exhaustive confidence factor. In this work, all the three levels of evaluation provided by the Guide-Lines issued by the MiBACT to evaluate and reduce seismic risk of cultural heritage have been developed, following a rigorous knowledge path that allowed to reach an exhaustive assessment of the seismic performance of the complex.
    Keywords: cultural heritage; mechanical characterisation of masonry; evaluation levels; seismic response of monumental buildings.

  • An integrated experimental and numerical approach for preventive Cultural Heritage conservation. The San Marco Museum case study.   Order a copy of this article
    by Margherita Vicario, Carla Balocco 
    Abstract: Microclimate knowledge inside historic buildings is a prerequisite for their preventive conservation and protection. In this research a methodological approach, based on the integration between experimental measurement and numerical simulation by means of CFD environmental control techniques, is provided. This method is aimed at identifying criticalities and risk conditions for the cultural heritage preventive conservation. The San Marco Museum in Florence is the case study. Results show that the proposed method can be a useful tool for guidelines for possible effective interventions, as well as basic rules of correct behaviour.
    Keywords: microclimate monitoring; simulation; CFD; cultural heritage; preventive conservation; historical building.
    DOI: 10.1504/IJMRI.2021.10042914
  • Methodological approach to the restoration of historical buildings based on microclimatic monitoring: the case of 'La Specola' Museum in Florence   Order a copy of this article
    by F. Sciurpi, C. Carletti 
    Abstract: In this paper, a methodology meant to evaluate the building-plant system of historical museum buildings is presented: in this methodology, thermophysical characteristics of the envelope and technical features of the HVAC and lighting devices are collected, microclimatic parameters are monitored and assessed, retrofitting strategies are defined and evaluated. The methodology is applied to 'La Specola' Museum in Florence, where microclimatic parameters have been monitored continuously for one year and conservation indicators have been defined and assessed. 'La Specola' is one of the oldest museums of Florence and contains zoological collection and anatomical waxes. In the paper, the results of the different retrofitting strategies, such as wall and roof insulation, window and skylight improvements, as well as the adding of shading devices, are presented and discussed for selected representative rooms.
    Keywords: museums; historical buildings; preventive conservation; evaluation methodology; microclimatic monitoring; energy modelling; calibration; retrofitting strategies.
    DOI: 10.1504/IJMRI.2022.10044043
  • Protection of art works to blast hazards: the Fountain of Neptune in Florence   Order a copy of this article
    by Marco Domaneschi, Marco Tanganelli, Stefania Viti, Gian Paolo Cimellaro 
    Abstract: Art works have a fundamental role in the cultural and economic status of communities. Their protection, therefore, is a fundamental goal. For the most part, artefacts are conserved in museums, which oversee their maintenance and exposure. Despite such protection, however, acts of vandalism can occur, threatening the integrity of the art works. Art works with an outdoor location are at increased risk of vandalism since they cannot be highly guarded. In this work, the protection of art works to blast hazards was checked for the Fountain of Neptune located in the 'Piazza della Signoria' in Florence. The dynamic response of the statue of Neptune to a blast was checked by performing a finite element (FE) analysis and by considering a simplified equivalent load. Special attention was paid to the limit capacity of the case study and the assumed restraint at the sculpture base.
    Keywords: Ammannati’s sculptures; artifacts; dynamic analysis; FE models; sculpture; blast hazard; dynamic response of sculptures; fountain of Neptune.
    DOI: 10.1504/IJMRI.2022.10045192
  • The baths complex of Villa San Marco at Stabia. Investigations in a risk-assessment perspective   Order a copy of this article
    by Michele Coppola, Jacopo G. Vitale, Giulia Poli 
    Abstract: The architectural remains of Villa San Marco show a wide repertoire of degenerative situations, with multiple levels of criticality and complexity, typical of many archaeological areas. The damage caused by the ancient eruptions of the Vesuvius have been overlapped by several degradation processes, activated by Bourbon excavations, ineffective previous restorations and abandonment conditions. Speed and intensity of degenerative processes are connected to the vulnerability of the architectural remains. The aim of this research is to define a multi-scale-reading approach that allows the systematic understanding of the damage dynamics and the vulnerability of the architectural artefacts. The investigation was conducted on the remains of the thermal baths, currently closed to the public, chosen as case study. In addition to the digital documentation, a survey was carried out on the main degenerative phenomena, with attention to the loss of material and the structural stability assessment. For some phenomena, a risk analysis procedure has been proposed.
    Keywords: Stabia; risk assessment; archaeological preservation; damage dynamics; Villa San Marco; Roman painted plaster; safety in archaeological sites; structural assessment; thermal baths; multiscale-reading.
    DOI: 10.1504/IJMRI.2022.10048593
  • How structural engineering can help archaeology?   Order a copy of this article
    by Mauro Sassu 
    Abstract: In the present paper the 'Three R' strategy for archaeological consolidation is described, referring to some well-known historical examples and then to some significant cases on UNESCO sites. The problem of conserving the constructive information in the ancient structures along centuries is here summarised, together with examples of recurrent structural problems that affect those constructions. Three case studies of sites are explained: two located in Arabic Peninsula (Dhofar district, Sumhuram - Al Balid), one in Jordan (Petra district Shawbak). The replacement of collapsing walls (with or without mortar joints) is illustrated, following the strategy to assess a respectful, recognisable and reversible consolidation technique. Moreover, aspects of management of works and of modelling from structural point of view are discussed.
    Keywords: archaeological consolidation; three R strategy; UNESCO sites; masonry structures.
    DOI: 10.1504/IJMRI.2022.10048711

Special Issue on: Composite Materials for Masonry Strengthening Experiments, Modelling and Analysis

  •   Free full-text access Open AccessExperimental, analytical, and numerical investigations on bond behaviour of basalt TRM systems
    ( Free Full-text Access ) CC-BY-NC-ND
    by Eloisa Fazzi, Giulia Misseri, Luisa Rovero 
    Abstract: In this study, a composite system designed for the reinforcement of masonry structures is investigated. The constituents of the composite system are a basalt-fibre mesh and a lime-based mortar matrix. Two basalt-fibre mesh textiles showing one double the reinforcement of the other due to a tighter spacing of yarns were considered. Three solutions were tested: one layer of the looser textile, one layer of the tighter and two layers of the looser one, providing the same reinforcement ratio of the tighter. The experimental campaign addressed single-lap shear tests on bricks. Also, within a fracture process zone approach, bond behaviour of the composite system, assuming a trilinear cohesive material law, is modelled in closed form, solving the system of differential equations. Further, a numerical finite-difference based solution is set up and compared to the analytical and experimental ones.
    Keywords: basalt fibres; lime mortar; FRCM; TRM; cohesive material law; CML; finite-difference; single-lap shear test; bond test; direct shear test.
    DOI: 10.1504/IJMRI.2022.10051005
  • Historical masonry wallets with plaster slabs strengthened by CrFRM and GFRP   Order a copy of this article
    by Roberto Capozucca, Erica Magagnini 
    Abstract: Knowledge concerning the response of historic masonry to cyclic shear loading is fundamental for defining the behaviour of existing masonry buildings under seismic actions. Walls under cycle shear as known may be diagonally cracked due to low tensile strength of masonry. Many mechanical and geometric parameters influence the shear response of brickwork walls. One aspect too often underestimated is the presence of plaster on the external surface of walls. In this paper, experimental response and failure mechanisms of historic brickwork wallets, without plaster and with lime plaster reinforced by fibres, have been investigated under tensile tests by diagonal compression. The wallets have been strengthened with mortar reinforced by chrome fibres (CrFRM) and with glass fibre reinforced polymer (GFRP) net. The experiments were carried out previously on materials and triplets to define the strength of unreinforced masonry under compression and shear. Experimental results are shown, obtaining shear criteria useful in practice.
    Keywords: historic masonry; plaster slab; chrome fibres; CrFRM; glass fibre reinforced polymer; GFRP-net; diagonal compression tests.
    DOI: 10.1504/IJMRI.2022.10044372
  • Application of digital image correlation to compression tests on tuff masonry panels strengthened by textile reinforced mortar   Order a copy of this article
    by Gianluca Maracchini, Gianluca Chiappini, Jacopo Donnini, Enrico Quagliarini, Valeria Corinaldesi, Stefano Lenci 
    Abstract: Digital image correlation (DIC) is a contactless full-field optical technique for measuring displacements that can be potentially used in place of more common linear variable differential transformers (LVDTs) to avoid instrumentation damage during destructive tests. However, despite being already adopted in several fields, its potentialities in testing full-scale masonry walls strengthened with textile reinforcing mortar (TRM) have not been fully investigated yet. In this paper, the results obtained by applying a stereo-DIC technique to compression tests of unstrengthened and TRM-strengthened tuff masonry walls (1.0 x 1.2 x 0.25 m3) are reported. Results showed that the presence of helical steel bars used to connect the two TRM layers caused crack localisation to the masonry wall, leading to a reduction of compression strength. Compared with the results obtained with LVDTs, the DIC technique was able to accurately monitor tridimensional displacements and cracking pattern evolution. The potentialities and limits of this technique are finally highlighted.
    Keywords: digital image correlation; DIC; textile reinforcing mortar; TRM; tuff masonry; compression test; elastic modulus.
    DOI: 10.1504/IJMRI.2022.10045349
  • Effect of type of masonry units on the mechanical properties of masonry panel walls   Order a copy of this article
    by Ali Abdelkhalek, Mohammed A.Sakr, Ayman A. Seleemah, Tarek M. Khalifa 
    Abstract: Recently, cellular lightweight concrete (CLC) masonry units have been emerging as a substitute for burnt red clay (RCL) units that are commonly used in construction. In this study, an experimental program was conducted according to ASTM and British standards to compare the essential in-plane mechanical properties of CLC and RCL masonry units and masonry panels. These mechanical properties represent the initial inputs for numerical modelling used in analysing the behaviour of different elements (i.e., constructed from CLC units). This study showed that RCL masonry units and masonry panel walls are stiffer than CLC units, but they approximately have the same lateral load resistance. While the CLC masonry units are more ductile than RCL ones and have higher energy-absorbing capacity. Accordingly, they could be a solution to enhance the flexibility and ductility of buildings. Moreover, it is a lightweight brick.
    Keywords: cellular lightweight concrete; mechanical properties; red clay masonry units; masonry structures; compressive strength.
    DOI: 10.1504/IJMRI.2022.10046886
  • Fully analytical model for the analysis of externally bonded composites applied to brittle supports: sensitivity analysis   Order a copy of this article
    by Elisa Bertolesi, Gabriele Milani, Ernesto Grande, Roberto Capozucca 
    Abstract: Several analytical models have been proposed reducing the debonding mechanism to a bond loss event occurring in inelastic interfaces, whose mechanical properties need to be adjusted based on available experimental data. The analytical model developed by the authors and briefly recalled in this work, considers an elastic FRP bonded to brittle supports by means of inelastic interfaces. In detail, the inelastic interface is described by an initial linear elastic phase (phase 1) and a decreasing exponential softening law (phase 2). This article demonstrates the reliability of the proposed model to study the adhesion performance and failure modes of FRPs applied on different brittle supports. The model is widely benchmarked using the results obtained from two laboratory investigations on flat concrete and masonry prisms reinforced with FRP composite materials and an extensive sensitivity analysis performed by varying different parameters, namely: bond length, interfacial bonding law and FRP mechanical properties. Each parameter is discussed with respect to: 1) the obtained global force-slip curves; 2) force increase; 3) post-peak response.
    Keywords: debonding mechanisms; FRP composites; closed form solution; concrete; masonry.
    DOI: 10.1504/IJMRI.2022.10046887
  • Dynamic identification and numerical model updating of an old bell-tower in Marche Region (Italy)   Order a copy of this article
    by Ersilia Giordano, Angela Ferrante, Georgios P. Salachoris, Mattia Schiavoni, Francesco Clementi, Stefano Lenci 
    Abstract: In this paper, the dynamic characterisation of the civic bell-tower of Rotella (a small village in the Marche region, Central Italy) is presented. The tower after being monitored, using four tri-axial piezo-electric accelerometers, and obtaining its dynamic characteristics, was modelled through a finite element software. The difference between measured and real values has been smoothed out by acting on all unknown parameters such as Young’s moduli, thus obtaining a model with frequency differences, compared to reality, less than 5% and the MAC values between the modal shapes close to the unit.
    Keywords: dynamic identification; numerical models; masonry towers; monumental buildings; structural health monitoring; finite element model; FEM; model updating; modal assurance criteria; Marche Region; Italy.
    DOI: 10.1504/IJMRI.2022.10046888
  • Unveiling the complexity of twin church bells dynamics using ambient vibration tests   Order a copy of this article
    by Angela Ferrante, Ersilia Giordano, Gianluca Standoli, Francesca Bianconi, Francesco Clementi, Stefano Lenci 
    Abstract: On the Italian territory, there are many monumental structures that need to be preserved. Given their great historical and architectural value, it is essential to use minimally invasive, but effective, techniques able to evaluate their current structural capabilities and monitor their structural health. The technique that currently appears most appropriate is the ambient vibration monitoring, which, through the analysis of recorded accelerometric time-histories in operating conditions, returns the current dynamic properties of the structure. This work shows the results of the short-term monitoring carried out on the two towers of the San Francesco Church, located in the city of Ascoli Piceno. Modal identification allowed to obtain its frequencies, modal shapes, and damping. With these data, the finite element model of the complex was calibrated, acting on the elastic parameters of the masonry, making numerical modal shapes and frequencies match with the experimental results.
    Keywords: dynamic identification; numerical models; NM; masonry churches; masonry towers; ambient vibration tests; monumental structures; structural health monitoring; SHM; finite element model; model updating.
    DOI: 10.1504/IJMRI.2022.10046889
  • ConFiRMa: calibration of a numerical model for fibre-reinforced mortar analysis with OOFEM code   Order a copy of this article
    by Ingrid Boem, Bořek Patzák, Alena Kohoutková 
    Abstract: The 'conFiRMa' project is aimed at calibrating a numerical model for masonry buildings strengthened with fibre reinforced mortar (FRM). The main purpose is to develop a multi-level approach, starting with the detailed modelling of components, followed by an optimisation procedure to get a computationally efficient intermediate level model for the calibration of the lumped plasticity model for global analysis. In this paper, the first results concerning the detailed modelling level are presented. It focuses on the interaction between the mortar matrix and the embedded composite reinforcement mesh. The mortar is modelled through solid elements, the yarns of the fibre-based mesh with truss elements and the mortar-mesh interaction by means of interface elements. Nonlinear static analyses are performed, considering the materials and interfaces nonlinearity. The results of previous experimental tests concerning FRM mechanical characterisation are considered to calibrate (pull-off tests) and validate (tensile and shear bond tests) the numerical model.
    Keywords: seismic vulnerability; masonry strengthening; structural refurbishment; composites; fibre reinforced mortar; FRM; composite reinforced mortar; CRM; numerical modelling; OOFEM.
    DOI: 10.1504/IJMRI.2022.10046890

Regular Issues

  • Application of Maxwell damping in the dynamic analysis of masonry structures with discrete elements   Order a copy of this article
    by José V. Lemos, E.M. Dawson, Z. Cheng 
    Abstract: Discrete element models are widely used in the analysis of masonry structures, as they provide an effective approximation of the observed behaviour, namely for modelling collapse modes governed by the discontinuities. Assessment of the response under earthquakes is an important application of these models, which perform time domain dynamic analysis using explicit algorithms. Rayleigh damping is generally used, but its mass-proportional component has potential adverse effects, and the small steps required by explicit solutions lead to large computational costs. An alternative damping formulation employing Maxwell elements in parallel with the joint stiffness is proposed and tested. Problems involving linear elastic analysis of column bending, rocking of rigid blocks, and out-of-plane failure of masonry walls under seismic loading are examined. The proposed damping approach displayed a sound mechanical performance and is computationally efficient. These early results justify further investigation of the technique for a broader application in masonry structural dynamics.
    Keywords: masonry; numerical models; discrete elements; dynamic analysis; damping; Maxwell elements.
    DOI: 10.1504/IJMRI.2021.10043266
  • Determination of the stress-strain relationship as a function of temperature for the design of AAC masonry panels subject to fire according to Eurocodes   Order a copy of this article
    by Marco Andreini, Lorenzo Miccoli 
    Abstract: At the current status, the European standard provides only tabulated data as a reliable method to assess the structural fire resistance of masonry walls. In the version in force, Annex C and D are mostly considered not reliable for design since an adequate validation by experimental results is missing. For this reason, this paper proposes an advance of the input parameters adopted by the models for the thermo-mechanical response of AAC. In addition, new stress-strain curves as a function of temperature are then proposed and compared with the stress-strain curves currently available in the Annex D of the European standard. The comparison of results points out that the current curves do not fit properly to the behaviour of AAC masonry in a range of temperatures equal to 500 C-700 C.
    Keywords: thermo-mechanical response; performance-based approach; aerated autoclaved concrete; Eurocode 6; fire resistance.
    DOI: 10.1504/IJMRI.2021.10043509
  • Analysis of a nonlinear model arising in chemical aggression of marble   Order a copy of this article
    by Giuseppe Alì, Isabella Torcicollo, Carmelo Scuro 
    Abstract: We present a simple model describing the chemical aggression undergone by calcium carbonate rocks in presence of acid atmosphere. A large literature is available on the deterioration processes of building stones, in particular in connection with problems concerning historical buildings in the field of cultural heritage. It is well known that the greatest aggression is caused by sulphur dioxide and nitrate. In this paper we consider the corrosion caused by sulphur dioxide, which, reacting with calcium carbonate, produces gypsum. The model proposed is obtained by considering both the diffusive and convective effects of propagation and assuming that the porous medium is saturated with a compressible fluid having an assigned polytropic constitutive equation for the pressure. The qualitative behaviour of the one-dimensional solutions in the fast reaction limit is performed.
    Keywords: porous media; chemical reactions; Stefan problem; fast reaction limit.
    DOI: 10.1504/IJMRI.2021.10043511
  • Development of a structural health monitoring system with IoT smart nodes based on Mathematical model of inverted pendulums equipped with accelerometers   Order a copy of this article
    by Carmelo Scuro, Giuseppe Alì, Francesco Demarco, Saverio Porzio 
    Abstract: For centuries, the Italian historical and cultural heritage has been subject to seismic events that have damaged its integrity. The only way to preserve historic centres is to monitor their health through the integration of the traditional structural health monitoring (SHM) system. The aim of the work is to extend the monitoring of historical masonry buildings using an innovative approach based on the simultaneous use of mathematical and finite element models to detect a reduced number of points to be monitored and establish the maximum stress that they can withstand before considering the whole structure in danger. The paper proposes an IoT-based SHM, for the online assessment of the displacement of the control points of a historic structure subject to an earthquake, which minimises the computational burden and reduces construction costs. This will be done by implementing a mathematical model with an inverse pendulum and using it to derive the parameters of interest.
    Keywords: historical masonry structures; FEM analysis; mathematical model; structural health monitoring system; internet of things; IoT.
    DOI: 10.1504/IJMRI.2021.10043691
  • Leeb hardness tests for mechanical characterisation of carpentry steels   Order a copy of this article
    by Antonio Formisano, Antonio Davino, Emilia Meglio 
    Abstract: Seismic vulnerability assessment requires a sufficient knowledge of existing buildings. In order to preserve existing metal structures, studies on non-destructive tests assume fundamental importance. The Leeb test performed with a portable tester is herein investigated as a method to indirectly estimate tensile strength of carpentry steels by measuring the surface hardness. The current work aims to identify a theoretical correlation between Leeb hardness values and the tensile strengths of steel deriving from direct tensile tests. Two sets of samples were analysed: existing steel profiles and new ones. The experimental results achieved were compared with the standard curves in the guidelines to evaluate the effectiveness of the latter theoretical provisions to foresee the mechanical behaviour of carpentry steels.
    Keywords: historical heritage; hardness; mechanical stress; experimental tests; Leeb method.
    DOI: 10.1504/IJMRI.2022.10044311
  • Comparative finite element modelling approaches for the seismic vulnerability analysis of historical masonry structures: the case study of the Cathedral of Catanzaro (Italy)   Order a copy of this article
    by Daniele Gaetano, Fabrizio Greco, Lorenzo Leonetti, Arturo Pascuzzo, Aurora Skrame 
    Abstract: The vulnerability assessment of an ancient cathedral located in Southern Italy is performed by using both conventional and advanced finite element models. The structural safety under both static and seismic loading conditions, also including wind and temperature loadings, is mainly assessed via a response spectrum analysis performed on an accurate 3D global model of the cathedral ad hoc developed. Moreover, additional pushover analyses are conducted using an advanced nonlinear model, for a better understanding of the seismic behaviour of the analysed structure. In particular, an innovative diffuse cohesive interface approach has been adopted and suitably compared with a well-established damage model, also in terms of associated mesh dependency issues. Finally, a critical discussion of the numerical results obtained via all these different models is reported, with the aim of comparing their predictive capabilities in terms of both global and local structural safety.
    Keywords: historical masonry structures; pushover analysis; cohesive finite element models; damage models; seismic vulnerability assessment.
    DOI: 10.1504/IJMRI.2022.10044503
  • Assessment of suitable envelope materials in multi climate zones of India to construct an economical building   Order a copy of this article
    by Shaheen Hasan, Sabah Khan 
    Abstract: The study is carried out for different climatic zones of India, by considering five different weather zones that are composite, cloudy, moderate, cold, and hot and dry. Basically Indian weather zones described in six type of zone but one is mixed type so for better understanding study carried out in five types of climate zones. This study shows an assessment of selected walling materials for building setups present in multi weather zones of India. The analysis of building materials is done with the help of discrete parameter such as construction expenditure, energy consumption amount, life cycle cost, embodied energy, energy performance index, reduction of carbon emission, and payback period, etc. The wall material properties are identified for these locations as Case_I, Case_II, Case_III, Case_IV, and Case_V, for ease of calculation.
    Keywords: life cycle cost analysis; building electric load; overall thermal conductivity; predicted mean vote; PMV; embodied energy; percentage people dissatisfaction; PPD; urban local bodies; ULBs.
    DOI: 10.1504/IJMRI.2022.10045352
  • An analysis of masonry arches reinforced with CFRP   Order a copy of this article
    by Giancarlo Bilotti, Domenico Bruno, Renato S. Olivito 
    Abstract: In this paper a numerical and experimental investigation of masonry arches is developed with an analysis of the effects of strengthening by means of advanced composite materials. More precisely, the focus of the analysis concerns the effects on the strength and stiffness improvement of damaged solid clay brick masonry arches by strengthening with carbon fibre reinforced plastic (CFRP). The masonry arch is modelled by assuming a no-tension material law. Moreover, the interface between mortar and bricks are modelled by assuming a unilateral contact behaviour. A 3D finite element model of the structure is developed accounting for the effective geometry of the brick-mortar components of the masonry arch and of the reinforcement layer. An experimental campaign was developed aimed to study the behaviour of damaged solid clay brick masonry arches strengthened with carbon fibre reinforced plastic.
    Keywords: masonry arch; modelling; experimentation.
    DOI: 10.1504/IJMRI.2022.10045405
  • Bond of CFRP/GFRP strips in the strengthening of walls   Order a copy of this article
    by Roberto Capozucca, Erica Magagnini, Giuseppe Pace 
    Abstract: In recent years, the research about strengthening techniques designed to prevent collapse and severe damages under seismic actions in masonry structures using composite materials increased considerably. Although the experimental and theoretical results are numerous, the central aspect of delamination of the strengthening with external bonded (EB) FRP strips on masonry surface need a deep analysis yet. Experimental results may assess the availability of technique for rehabilitation of damaged masonry buildings subjected to seismic action. This paper deals with the experimental results on the bond of carbon-FRP and glass-FRP strips considering pull-out tests and theoretical model useful to define the shear-slip laws. Further, the behaviour of brickwork wall models strengthened with CFRP/GFRP strips subjected to combined compression shear loading is analysed. The results are discussed, focusing the attention on the comparison of fracture energy developed during the different tests.
    Keywords: brickwork wall; external bonded strengthening; G/CFRP; pull-push tests; cyclic shear tests; delamination.
    DOI: 10.1504/IJMRI.2022.10046128
  • Literature review on the mechanical properties estimation of historical masonry buildings: application of an evaluation method for the Algerian case   Order a copy of this article
    by Hatem Seboui, Allaeddine Athmani, Antonio Formisano 
    Abstract: Nowadays, studying the behaviour of the old masonry structures is a challenging scope, wherein the knowledge of their material’s mechanical properties is a preliminary input for their modelling purposes. Several methods can estimate these properties. Unfortunately, for the Algerian case, on the one hand, often these estimation methods could not be carried out, which led to the absence of scientific regulations and databases of the historical materials. On the other hand, the Algerian historical buildings stock needs urgent intervention and analysis for its conservation and preservation due to the deterioration state. In this context, the current research paper attempts to review the methods available in the literature used worldwide to evaluate the material properties of old masonry buildings through a deep comparison of scientific sources aiming at finding a possible and reliable way to determine the mechanical features of historical masonry constructions in Algeria.
    Keywords: historical masonry materials; mechanical properties; ultrasonic pulse velocity test; direct approach; indirect approach.
    DOI: 10.1504/IJMRI.2022.10046050
  • Fully analytical model for the analysis of externally bonded composites applied to brittle supports: sensitivity analysis   Order a copy of this article
    by Elisa Bertolesi, Gabriele Milani, Ernesto Grande, Roberto Capozucca 
    Abstract: Several analytical models have been proposed reducing the debonding mechanism to a bond loss event occurring in inelastic interfaces, whose mechanical properties need to be adjusted based on available experimental data. The analytical model developed by the authors and briefly recalled in this work, considers an elastic FRP bonded to brittle supports by means of inelastic interfaces. In detail, the inelastic interface is described by an initial linear elastic phase (phase 1) and a decreasing exponential softening law (phase 2). This article demonstrates the reliability of the proposed model to study the adhesion performance and failure modes of FRPs applied on different brittle supports. The model is widely benchmarked using the results obtained from two laboratory investigations on flat concrete and masonry prisms reinforced with FRP composite materials and an extensive sensitivity analysis performed by varying different parameters, namely: bond length, interfacial bonding law and FRP mechanical properties. Each parameter is discussed with respect to: 1) the obtained global force-slip curves; 2) force increase; 3) post-peak response.
    Keywords: debonding mechanisms; FRP composites; closed form solution; concrete; masonry.
    DOI: 10.1504/IJMRI.2022.10046112
  • A non-linear static procedure for seismic assessment of unreinforced masonry buildings with rigid-diaphragms considering the effect of seismic incidence angle   Order a copy of this article
    by Prabakaran Kesavan, Arun Menon 
    Abstract: The outcome of structural assessment of existing buildings can be influenced by the seismic incidence angle considered in seismic analysis, apart from other assumptions in numerical modelling. Since seismic excitation is a random process, the expected direction of ground motion is not known a priori. The current practice to obtain the structural responses in the nonlinear static analysis of three-dimensional building models is to apply load patterns along two mutually orthogonal directions, which are arbitrarily chosen. The responses so obtained would either be higher or lower if the seismic demand were to act along any other direction. This paper presents a nonlinear static procedure for unreinforced masonry buildings based on the popular N2 method to account for such effects. The procedure would not necessitate a tedious multi-directional static/dynamic analysis. The paper also presents polar plots showing how the seismic incidence angle significantly influences the resultant displacements at floor levels.
    Keywords: pushover analysis; unreinforced masonry; seismic incidence angle; equivalent frame modelling; principal directions.
    DOI: 10.1504/IJMRI.2022.10046739
  • Influence of masonry infill configuration on seismic response in RC frame structures over soft and medium soil conditions   Order a copy of this article
    by Ronak Motiani, Sandip Vasanwala, Tejaskumar Thaker 
    Abstract: The geological faults, soil amplification, mass, and stiffness of the building governs its seismic performance. The seismic vulnerability of a buildings is assessed in this study considering all the above mentioned parameters. The extended finite fault modelling is used to generate ground motions at the engineering bedrock level. Furthermore, the field tests are carried out using multichannel analysis of surface wave (MASW) equipment on soft and medium soil conditions and results are used for the ground response analysis to obtain surface-level ground motions. These motions are used for nonlinear time history analysis of the reinforced concrete buildings with different masonry infill orientations. Finally, the outcome of the analysis is to derive the fragility curves using inter-storey drift (ISD) as damage measure (DM) and peak ground velocity (PGV) as an intensity measure (IM).
    Keywords: URM infill; reinforced concrete; soil amplification; synthetic ground motions; fragility curves.
    DOI: 10.1504/IJMRI.2022.10046740
  • Seismic evaluation and cost of retrofitting of load bearing structures a case study-based approach India perspective   Order a copy of this article
    by Salman Khursheed, Virendra Kumar Paul, Parnika Yadav 
    Abstract: The load bearing masonry structures in India are reported to be non-engineered buildings and are found to be among the most vulnerable structures for damage against seismic loads. This paper gives an overall view of the procedure to be followed for the condition assessment of a load bearing structure standard codes based on the research works as addressed by various researchers in the industry. This study follows a comprehensive evaluation of a case study building based on the Indian Standards: IS:1905 (1987) and IS:1893 (PART-1: 2016) for the detailed reasons for the identification of structural distress in load bearing masonry structure based on the damageability grade as per IS:13935 (2009). Furthermore, the paper also insinuates the support of the decision of structural retrofitting based on-demand capacity ratio (DCR) calculated for the permissible stress values calculated for the load-bearing walls in the case study as per IS:15988 (2013). The paper demonstrates a viable retrofitting technique of Ferro cement mesh overlay that has been used to enhance the strength of the existing structure as applied on the case study along with its cost analysis.
    Keywords: seismic evaluation; load bearing/masonry structures; structural distress; ferro cement overlay retrofitting; non-destructive tests; retrofitting cost analysis.
    DOI: 10.1504/IJMRI.2022.10046883
  • Review of thermal performance, hygrothermal behavior, and carbon sequestration in hemp concrete in order to make it an energy-efficient and eco-friendly material   Order a copy of this article
    by Neha Chandrakar 
    Abstract: Since a few decades ago, the construction industry has had pressure to find new building techniques and materials to meet energy-efficiency targets. It might be time to be aware of energy-efficient materials and methods to reduce pollution due to construction. Many new and advanced building techniques and materials are available in the market. Most of these techniques and materials involve plastic, petro-chemical-based substances, and other toxic substances that pollute the environment and planet when disposed of. There are so many low-energy buildings constructed, but they have been used more in their material. This study concerns the life cycle assessment of an environmentally friendly material for building hemp concrete. This paper analyses the thermal performance, relation with CO2 emission of hemp concrete and understand variation in thermal performance with water content, temperature and composition ratio, which set it apart from other traditional building material. Hemp concrete is an eco-friendly and energy-efficient building material due to its various natural and unique properties.
    Keywords: thermal performance; breathability; hygroscopicity; low carbon emission; energy-efficient.
    DOI: 10.1504/IJMRI.2022.10046884
  • Valuation on the strength properties of gypsum based PCM cement mortar   Order a copy of this article
    by D. Gift Pon Lazarus, Sunita Bansal 
    Abstract: The construction industry moving towards developing sustainable and smart building materials in recent decades rapidly due to the population range and the rising living comfort standards. In this study the compressive strength gypsum based PCM cement mortar evaluated in building construction envelope materials. The inert mortar composition of phase change materials (PCMs) allows the phase transition from solid to liquid and liquid to solid by its natural characteristics. In this study, gypsum powder (G) is utilised to encapsulate with paraffin wax to make gypsum with PCM aggregates also it is replacement with fine aggregates used in cement mortar. In order to use PPC cement, quartz sand, gypsum with PCM aggregates and water mixture was used to produce gypsum based PCM cement mortar. The variation in strength properties with different mix proportion of gypsum with PCM aggregates respect to quartz sand was investigated to achieve the optimum required strength properties of the mortar.
    Keywords: phase change materials; PCMs; gypsum; buildings materials; sustainable building materials; smart building materials.
    DOI: 10.1504/IJMRI.2022.10047066
  • Local effects of bonding on the strength of drystone masonry in Iron-age brochs   Order a copy of this article
    by Dimitris Theodossopoulos, Jenny Gilbertson, Wei He, Katherine Primavesi, Bowen Qiu, Franziska Reutter 
    Abstract: Collapses in drystone prehistoric Scottish broch towers probably started from localised failures at the supports of roofs or decks, settlements, ill-conceived modifications or gradual decay producing long-term accumulation of debris. Another source of instability is their precarious state during excavations. Some of these effects have been simulated as excessive lateral thrust or settlement and are studied here through experimental analysis on wallettes in 1/15 scale, expanding on earlier insight from complete broch models tested to settlement. Wallettes in typical bonds were tested following a parametric study on the effect of thickness, bond and architectural features (openings, corbelled chambers, uneven supports). Failure patterns at overturning and settlement were established, triggered at a minimum lateral displacement of one-fifth of the wall thickness. The walls could resist a lateral earth pressure representing debris accumulation at least 5 times their active earth pressure and resistance to settlement was by arch formation at the base.
    Keywords: brochs; drystone masonry; settlement; lateral earth pressure.
    DOI: 10.1504/IJMRI.2022.10047690
  • Shrinkage and creep behaviour of thin layered mortared masonry   Order a copy of this article
    by Julian Thamboo, Jiffry Mohamed 
    Abstract: Thin layer mortared masonry (TLMM) system is one of the alternatives to the traditional masonries to accelerate the wall construction. The creep and shrinkage deformation of the masonry can be minimised by adopting TLMM construction, where thin layer (0.5 mm to 3 mm) and stronger mortars (>10 MPa) can be used. Subsequently, a comprehensive experimental campaign was implemented to investigate the shrinkage and creep shortening characteristics of TLMM. The influence of: 1) masonry type (clay and concrete); 2) prestress levels (10%, 20 and 30%); 3) age of loading (3 and 7 days) on the TLMM shrinkage and creep characteristics were examined over 300 days. The creep coefficients obtained for the clay and concrete TLMM prisms range from 0.37-1.10 and 0.42-1.38, respectively. Using the experimental data, empirical time dependent formulations to determine the evolutions of shrinkage and creep characteristics of TLMM were established. Finally, shrinkage and creep parameters obtained in the study are compared with the data given in literature.
    Keywords: thin layer mortared masonry; TLMM; creep; shrinkage compressive strength; mortar; rheological models.
    DOI: 10.1504/IJMRI.2022.10047777
  • Experimental assessment of diagonal shear parameters of dry stacked block masonry built with self-interlocking compressed earth blocks   Order a copy of this article
    by Akhtar Gul, Inayat Ullah Khan, Bashir Alam, Khan Shahzada 
    Abstract: The surface characteristics of dry stack block masonry, built with interlocking blocks, control the overall performance of a structure. In this research work, the shear parameters of dry stack block masonry (DSBM) have been evaluated experimentally by testing DSBM walls through diagonal tension testing protocols. The DSBM walls were tested under the diagonal compression loading with and without edge load. The results have been evaluated by using available research models. Coefficient of friction, cohesion, diagonal tensile strength, shear strength, and shear modulus have been found from the experimental tests. This study shows that the shear parameters of DSBM are greatly influenced by axial compression. In the presence of axial compression load, the values of shear parameters of DSBM are closely matched with the values of regular mortared masonries.
    Keywords: diagonal tension test; DTT; dry stack block masonry; DSBM; cohesion; friction coefficient; edge load; shear parameters; Elastic modulus; shear modulus; state of stress; diagonal compression loading.
    DOI: 10.1504/IJMRI.2022.10048224
  • Study on the influence of structural interventions to monuments based on in-situ ambient vibration measurements at Matsopoulos Mill, Trikala, Greece   Order a copy of this article
    by Thomas N. Salonikios, Konstantinos E. Morfidis, Nikolaos P. Theodoulidis 
    Abstract: In present paper, results are presented from the postprocessing of ambient vibration measurements at a mill building. The mechanical properties of the structural elements were estimated through these records. It was found that the eigen-properties of the final structure are not significantly altered due to the simultaneous increment of the mass and the stiffness of the building. The in situ measurements document that both the added and the existing structural elements cooperate in the carriage of the applied loads. It was additionally found that, as a result of the operation of the mechanical equipment, the structural system of building is significantly vibrated. Therefore, it is proposed that the use and operation of this equipment for display purposes should be limited. Finally, the need for a re-examination of the structure in the near future is also proposed, as it is necessary for the certification of the sustainability of the interventions.
    Keywords: ambient vibrations; mass addition; stiffness addition; eigen-properties; influence of interventions; monument; mill.
    DOI: 10.1504/IJMRI.2022.10048710
  • Experimental studies on blast performance of unreinforced masonry walls of clay bricks and concrete blocks: a state-of-the-art review   Order a copy of this article
    by S.M. Anas, Mehtab Alam, Mohammad Umair 
    Abstract: In this paper, available experimental studies on clay-brick and concrete block URM walls subjected to blast loading are briefly reviewed and summarised. Studies conducted to improve the blast resistance of the walls using G-FRP strips, G-FRP rods, and Polyurea coating, and their effect on maximum deflection, damage, and cracking have also been recapitulated. Detail summary for strengthening and retrofitting of the walls is presented in tabular form. It is observed that the effect of brick and mortar strength on maximum mid-span deflection and damage resistance of wall is insignificant under higher reflected blast pressure (> 2MPa). However, Young’s modulus of masonry is found to be a predominant parameter in improving the deflection response of the wall. The mode of failure of a wall is governed by the magnitude of peak overpressure, blast duration, and boundary conditions. Scope for further studies on a hybrid form of the walls is recommended.
    Keywords: blast loading; blast parameters; clay bricks; CL; concrete blocks; cracking; damage; failure modes; polyurea coating; glass fiber reinforced polymer; GFRP; unreinforced masonry; URM; walls.
    DOI: 10.1504/IJMRI.2022.10049719
  • Stresses in orthotropic, spherical masonry domes   Order a copy of this article
    by P. Subrahmanya V. Bhat, M.V. Renukadevi, K.S. Jagadish 
    Abstract: Most of the theories developed for shell analysis assume the material is isotropic. But recent studies on masonry reveal its orthotropic behaviour. Hence, for the better understanding, orthotropic stress analysis following Timoshenko approach for uniformly distributed load is adopted, which is the prerequisite for failure analysis. The axial compression is quite low and not problematic for small spans. The circumferential axial stress will be maximum closer to the boundaries, which is critical for masonry as it is tensile in nature. The study shows about twenty percent increase in this tension value compared to isotropic case. This becomes especially critical as the radius increases. The flexural tension due to bending along the meridional direction will be generally low for orthotropic case and is partially compensated by the axial compression in the same direction. The maximum stresses have been compared with the strength reported for similar masonry materials used in South India.
    Keywords: spherical masonry domes; orthotropic; bending analysis; stress analysis; Geckeler’s approximations.
    DOI: 10.1504/IJMRI.2022.10049863
  • Behaviour of C-FRP laminate strengthened masonry and unreinforced masonry compound walls under blast loading, Afghanistan scenario   Order a copy of this article
    by Emal Ahmadi, Mehtab Alam, S.M. Anas 
    Abstract: Afghanistan being the most suffered nation by wars, terrorism and counter-terrorism, its common people are sick of subsequent attacks and counter-attacks by warlords. Even places of worship and worshippers are not spared from these attacks. Compound walls enclosing such religious structures are found targeted by explosive blasts for the last many years. In this study, blast performance of free-standing compound URM walls commonly used in Afghanistan of one brick thickness and one-half brick thickness, made of 220 mm x 110 mm x 70 mm red clay bricks, is investigated using the ABAQUS/Explicit code by doing nonlinear analysis. The walls have also been retrofitted with the laminate of high-strength C-FRP on the explosion face only and on both faces. Macro-modelling strategy is chosen to optimise the computational time. Comparable blast performance of the strengthened walls exhibits that laminate on both the faces rules out the requirement of the higher thickness of the masonry wall.
    Keywords: blast loading; C-FRP laminate; CDP model; damage; masonry walls; numerical simulations; Afghanistan.
    DOI: 10.1504/IJMRI.2022.10049968
  • Physical, mechanical, and bonding properties comparison of lightweight foam concrete brick with burnt clay brick used in masonry   Order a copy of this article
    by Manan Hashim, Manzoor Tantray 
    Abstract: Even as technology advances, brick masonry remains the oldest form of construction. Over the last decade, lightweight bricks have gained popularity in building construction. The study was undertaken to evaluate the engineering performance of high-strength lightweight bricks. The physical properties, i.e., density, water absorption, and initial rate of absorption, mechanical properties, i.e., compressive strengths of brick and their prisms and modulus of elasticity, and bonding strength, i.e., shear strength and flexural tensile strength. Additionally, these properties were compared with the burnt clay brick. The bulk density of lightweight brick was found to be approximately 46% lower than burnt clay brick. Lightweight brick and their masonry prisms had compressive strengths of 9.98% and 15.63% greater than burnt clay brick and masonry prisms, respectively. The weak flexural and shear bond strength of lightweight brick can be improved by increasing contact surface, surface roughness, and providing frog.
    Keywords: lightweight foam concrete brick; burnt clay brick; physical properties; mechanical properties; bond strength properties.
    DOI: 10.1504/IJMRI.2022.10050256
  • Numerical assessment of movement joint spacing in masonry veneer walls with high-strength steel bed joint reinforcement   Order a copy of this article
    by Rutger Vrijdaghs, Yassin Zabbar, Gerhard Vitt, Els Verstrynge 
    Abstract: The addition of bed joint reinforcement (BJR) to masonry improves the structural behaviour by limiting crack widths and increasing the post-cracking capacity. However, the design of BJR according to Eurocode 6 does not take into account the material properties, and may lead to uneconomical designs. In this paper, the structural behaviour of reinforced masonry with a truss-type and high-strength wire-type BJR is investigated under thermal contraction loading using macromechanical finite element modelling to compare crack widths in order to assess the design approach of Eurocode 6. Varying wall lengths (12 m, 18 m and 24 m), reinforcements (normal and high strength BJR) and boundary conditions (fixed and sliding) are taken into account. The results show that BJR significantly limits the maximum crack widths by increasing the number of cracks. The simulations show that increased spacing between thermal expansion joints can be allowed beyond the current recommendations of Eurocode 6, optimising the design.
    Keywords: macromechanical modelling; thermal contraction; bed joint reinforcement; BJR; reinforced masonry; crack modelling.
    DOI: 10.1504/IJMRI.2022.10050981
  • Role of UHPC in-lieu of ordinary cement-sand plaster on the performance enhancement of masonry wall under close-range blast loading: a finite element investigation   Order a copy of this article
    by S.M. Anas, Mehtab Alam, Mohammad Umair 
    Abstract: In this study, a URM wall along with bracing lateral walls on the same side at each end is micro-modelled in ABAQUS software with an explicit module and investigation has been carried out for its blast performance under the 7.49 kg-TNT load at scaled distance 1.83 m/kg1/3. The concrete damage plasticity model including the strain-rate effects is used to model the nonlinear behaviour of bricks and mortar-joints. The finite-element model is calibrated and validated by comparison with the experimental results of Badshah et al. (2021). To prevent the damage catastrophe of the wall, protective coatings of: 1) ultra-high-performance concrete (UHPC); 2) ultra-high-performance fibre-reinforced concrete (UHPFRC), of 15 mm thickness have been considered as strengthening materials. Damage to the UHPFRC coated braced masonry wall is found to be not only much small in magnitude but also restrained over much less area as compared to the UHPC coated wall under close-range blast loading.
    Keywords: blast loading; masonry walls; micro-modelling; bricks; mortar joints; concrete coatings; damage; numerical simulation; stresses.

  • Strengthening of unreinforced braced masonry wall with (1) CFRP laminate and (2) mild-steel strips: innovative techniques, against close-range explosion   Order a copy of this article
    by S.M. Anas, Mehtab Alam, Mohammad Umair, Manal Hadi Ghaffoori Kanaan 
    Abstract: In this paper, nonlinear explicit dynamic analyses under the TNT equivalent charge weights of 4.34 and 7.49 kg at scaled distances 2.19 and 1.83 m/kg1/3, respectively, are conducted on unreinforced braced clay brick masonry wall using the ABAQUS/Explicit code considering Concrete Damage Plasticity model with loading-rate effects. Computed damage patterns are found closely matching with the experimental results of Badshah et al. (2021). Efforts are made to strengthen the wall following: 1) C-FRP wrapping; 2) steel-strip mesh with angle sections at the edges of the wall. The load carried and its mechanism by unreinforced and strengthened walls are highlighted. Damage to the wall strengthened with 2 mm thick CFRP wrapping on both the faces is found comparable with the wall strengthened with strips and angles of thickness 5 mm under blast loading. From the ease of application point of view, strengthening the wall with wrapping is better than with the steel strip-angle technique.
    Keywords: bricks; C-FRP wrapping; damage; explosions; masonry; micro-modeling; nonlinear analysis; steel jacketing; structural performance; stresses.