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Languages: English
Types: Doctoral thesis
Subjects: TA
A programme of masonry tests has been undertaken at prototype and model scales with a view to comparing their behaviour and strength under various conditions of loading. Characterisation tests were carried out to determine the principal behaviour of the units and mortar before the main programme of masonry test. The testing regime was in two parts: in the first category of tests compressive, shear, flexural, bond and diagonal tensile strength tests were carried out on prototype, half, fourth and sixth scale models. While in the second category of tests the effect of different joint thickness, increasing mortar strength and different sand gradings were tested on the compressive, shear, flexural, bond and diagonal tensile strengths of sixth scale model masonry. The size effect laws for quasi-brittle materials from fracture mechanics were also applied to the test data in order to find out their suitability to masonry model studies. The knowledge gained on the model scale behaviour of masonry was then applied to a prototype study involving the effect of eccentricity on the compressive strength of masonry as it relates to masonry arches. The sixth model scale was used for this study using four different eccentricities. On the whole, the model tests showed similar behaviour to the prototype. While there was no discernable scale effect in the shear, flexural, bond and diagonal tensile strength test, the compressive strength tests showed a noticeable scale effect. The parametric study at sixth scale also showed it is possible to use a sixth model to determine the effect of the increasing mortar strength and different grading of sands on masonry strength. However, the effect of increasing joint thickness was difficult to quantify. Indications from the size effect analysis of test data were also encouraging. The experimental data from the different tests were generally found to be in good agreement with the size effect laws of fracture mechanics. The application study was found to agree with the prototype investigation for low eccentricities but does not correspond well for higher eccentricities. Overall the results showed that it was possible to use model tests to provide masonry strength properties that could be used to determine the structural behaviour real life structures from numerical studies.
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