The Open Construction & Building Technology Journal

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A Numerical Model for Pre-Monitoring Design of Historical Colonnade Courtyards: The Case Study of Chiaramonte Palace in Palermo

Cristiano Bilello1, *, Emilio Greco2, Martina Greco2, Nazareno Madonia2, Antonina Pirrotta2, 3, Antonio Sorce2
1 ABGroup Ingegneria, Via Maggiore Toselli 10, 90143 Palermo, Italy
2 Dipartimento di Ingegneria Civile, Ambientale, Aerospaziale, dei Materiali (DICAM), Università degli Studi di Palermo, Viale delle Scienze, 90128 Palermo, Italy
3 Department of Mathematical Sciences, University of Liverpool, Liverpool, UK


This paper proposes a numerical model that can be used for theoretical and experimental dynamic characterization of historical colonnade courtyards. Such an architectural element appears often in buildings of historical heritage and, especially under seismic excitation, it represents the most vulnerable structural part. Therefore, it is very important to have reliable as well as simple models available for vulnerability analysis, to evaluate different reinforcing systems if needed, or to plan dynamic characterization tests or monitoring campaigns, as in the present case. Chiaramonte Palace, a wonderful example of the historical heritage of Palermo, is investigated as case study. Firstly, a review of the restoration and structural consolidation works made over the years is presented, as fundamental step towards the knowledge of any existing structural system. Then the acquired information are used to propose a simplified finite element model that properly accounts for the interaction with the surrounding part of the building, and that can be easily calibrated on the basis of estimated or measured vibration periods.

Keywords: Calibration procedure, courtyards codeling, dynamic characterization, finite element modelling, historical heritage, signal analysis.

Article Information

Identifiers and Pagination:

Year: 2016
Volume: 10
Issue: Suppl 1: M3
First Page: 52
Last Page: 64
Publisher Id: TOBCTJ-10-52
DOI: 10.2174/1874836801610010052

Article History:

Received Date: 30/6/2015
Revision Received Date: 15/8/2015
Acceptance Date: 26/8/2015
Electronic publication date: 29/04/2016
Collection year: 2016

© Bilello et al; Licensee Bentham Open.

open-access license: This is an open access article licensed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-Non-Commercial 4.0 International Public License (CC BY-NC 4.0) (, which permits unrestricted, non-commercial use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the work is properly cited.

* Address correspondence to this author at the ABGroup Ingegneria, Via Maggiore Toselli 10, 90143 Palermo, Italy; Tel: +39-091-2513514; E-mail:

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