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Structural Engineering

Aerospace Biological Civil Geotechnical Mechanical

Seismic Performance of Reinforced Masonry Wall Systems

Seminar Speaker
Professor P. Benson Shing
Seminar Date
Wednesday, May 19, 2021 - 12:00 pm
Sponsored By
Robert Asaro
Speaker Bio

Professor Shing’s research focuses on the seismic performance of reinforced concrete and masonry structures, and the advancement of design and assessment methods through computational modeling and large-scale laboratory experiments. His research has been supported by a number of agencies, including the NSF, NIST, California Department of Transportation, Colorado Department of Transportation, and the Applied Technology Council with funding from NIST and FEMA. He is a member of TMS 402 Committee and ASCE 41 Masonry Subcommittee.

Seismic design provisions in current building codes are to achieve life safety and collapse prevention for extreme load conditions. The behavior of reinforced masonry (RM) wall systems in a seismic event can be difficult to predict because it can be influenced by a number of factors, such as the reinforcement details, the wall configurations, the presence or absence of other structural elements, and the influence of horizontal diaphragms. This presentation summaries recent experimental and numerical studies conducted at UC San Diego to obtain a better understanding of the performance of RM wall systems under extreme seismic load conditions, and determine the collapse fragility of low-rise RM buildings designed according to current codes. The studies include the shake-table testing of two full-scale, single- story, reinforced masonry wall structures. The test data had been used to validate computational models that were used to evaluate the collapse probability of RM building archetypes. The studies have shown that RM wall systems can accommodate significant lateral displacements without collapsing, even when the inelastic behavior of the wall components is governed by shear. The experimental observations, modeling methods, and numerical results will be presented, and design implications will be discussed.


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