Walsh, Kevin1,2; Dizhur, Dmytro1,3; Giongo, Ivan4; Derakhshan, Hossein5 and Ingham, Jason1

1 Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of Auckland, New Zealand, kwal137@aucklanduni.ac.nz, ddiz001@aucklanduni.ac.nz, j.ingham@auckland.ac.nz
2 Frost Engineering and Consulting, Mishawaka, Indiana, United States, kwalsh@frosteng.net
3 EQ STRUC Group, Auckland, New Zealand, dmytro@eqstruc.co.nz
4 Department of Civil, Environmental and Mechanical Engineering, University of Trento, Italy, ivan.giongo@unitn.it
5 School of Civil, Environmental and Mining Engineering, University of Adelaide, Australia, hossein.derakhshan@adelaide.edu.au

Unreinforced masonry (URM) building construction is prominent in the form of load-bearing, partition, and infill walls. Significant out-of-plane (OOP) failures of URM walls often occur during
moderate and severe earthquake shaking and such walls are often identified in structural engineering assessments as being amongst the most vulnerable elements to OOP demands, especially earthquakes. For undamaged, in situ wall conditions where material properties are known and boundary conditions reflect idealised conditions assumed in analytical predictive models, these predictive models are easily applied, although the accuracy of the model outputs may still not be well understood. Furthermore, when in situ conditions do not reflect idealised conditions assumed in analytical predictive models, engineers are often uncertain as to which analytical models and inputs are most appropriately applied. Hence, an analytical campaign was undertaken to provide specific examples for structural engineering practitioners assessing the OOP seismic behaviour of URM walls, and the predictive results reported herein were compared to previously reported experimental results of eighteen tests on existing URM walls performed in situ. The considered wall configurations represented a variety of geometries, boundary conditions, pre-test damage states, and material properties. The average ratio and associated coefficient of variation (CV) of predicted strengths to measured strengths were determined to be 0.84 (CV 0.56) and 0.93 (CV 0.25) for the “unbounded” and “bounded” wall conditions, respectively, and corresponding recommendations for analytical assessment were made for practicing engineers.


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