McGinley, W. Mark1 and Nemati, Farid2

1 Professor, Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of Louisville, Louisville KY, 40292, USA,
2 Former Ph. D. Student, Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of Louisville, Louisville KY, 40292, USA,


Masonry infill wall systems are commonly used in building construction throughout the world. The presence of the infill wall can significantly increase the stiffness of the structural system, resulting in the reduction of structure’s natural period and its ductility. In some cases, the infill wall will impart large shear loads on the frame members, causing premature failure of these elements. Accurately predicting frame-infill panel interaction is therefore essential to ensure satisfactory behavior of these systems under high seismic loading and reduce risk. Research was undertaken to develop a model that can provide an accurate prediction of masonry infill wall behavior. As part of this research, a new macro-element for modeling the in-plane behavior of masonry infill walls was developed. This element combines a corner-hinged rectangular frame made of rigid bars with nonlinear spring elements to address the lateral in-plane response of the unreinforced masonry walls surrounded by structural frames. Through spring load-deformation relationships derived from expected material performance, the model is designed to predict the flexural, diagonal shear, and sliding shear response of infill masonry walls, as well as the framewall interaction. The nature of the proposed element also accommodates the modeling of perforated masonry walls and the effects these openings have on the performance of the infill masonry walls. The model was shown to be able to predict the behavior of unreinforced infill masonry walls with acceptable levels of accuracy.

KEYWORDS: infill wall, macro-model, masonry, nonlinear analysis


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