The Open Construction & Building Technology Journal

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FRP Strengthened Brick-Infilled RC Frames: An Approach for their Proper Consideration in Design

The Open Construction and Building Technology Journal, 2012, 6: 306-324

Constantine C. Spyrakos, Charilaos A. Maniatakis, Eleni Smyrou, Ioannis N. Psycharis

Laboratory for Earthquake Engineering (L.E.E.), School of Civil Engineering, Department of Structural Engineering, National Technical University of Athens, Zografos, Athens, 15700, Greece.

Electronic publication date 31/10/2012
[DOI: 10.2174/1874836801206010306]


A considerable number of existing buildings in seismic prone countries has been constructed either based on earlier concepts for seismic design or without applying seismic provisions. As a consequence, their seismic upgrade is a matter of concern. In urban environments, these structures usually consist of reinforced concrete (RC) frames with brick infill walls. Their strengthening with traditional methodologies, such as concrete jackets and shear wall construction, often results in operation interruption and high cost. The present research examines the complex response of RC frames and brick infill walls strengthened with Fibre Reinforced Polymers (FRP), a recently proposed retrofit scheme that becomes attractive because of its low cost and ease of implementation. Instead of the commonly used pair of compression struts that models the infill wall, a multiple strut masonry panel element model with advanced constitutive laws is applied for the representation of the nonlinear response of the infill wall, while a tension tie is used to consider the FRP sheets contribution on the response. The parameters of the wall and the FRP elements that are used in the numerical model are calibrated against experimental results available in the literature for two-storey, one-bay reinforced concrete frames subjected to cyclic loading. The effectiveness of this innovative technique is presented considering the response of the masonry infilled RC frame with and without retrofit. By comparison of the results, conclusions are drawn concerning design procedures.

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