Experimental testing of reinforced concrete walls in regions of lower seismicity


This paper provides an overview and the results of a recent experimental study testing the lateral cyclic displacement capacity of limited ductile reinforced concrete (RC) walls. The experimental program included one monolithic cast in-situ rectangular wall specimen and one monolithic cast in-situ box-shaped building core specimen. The specimens were tested using the MAST system at Swinburne University of Technology. They were tested under cyclic in-plane unidirectional lateral load with a shear-span ratio of 6.5. The specimens were detailed to best match typical RC construction practices in regions of lower seismicity, e.g. Australia, which generally results in a ‘limited ductile’ classification to the Australian earthquake loading code. This reinforcement detailing consisted of constant-spaced horizontal and vertical bars on each face of the wall and lap splices of the vertical reinforcement at the base of the wall in the plastic hinge region. The rectangular wall and building core specimens both achieved a relatively good lateral displacement capacity given the limited ductile reinforcement detailing adopted. The lap splice at the base of the specimens resulted in a somewhat different post-yield curvature distribution being developed. Rather than a typical plastic hinge with distributed cracks being developed, a ‘two crack’ plastic hinge was formed. This consisted of one major crack at the base of the wall and another at the top of the lap splice, with only hairline cracks developing between these two major cracks. The majority of the plastic rotation was concentrated in each of these two major cracks.


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How to Cite
Menegon, S. J., Wilson, J. L., Lam, N. T., & Gad, E. F. (2017). Experimental testing of reinforced concrete walls in regions of lower seismicity. Bulletin of the New Zealand Society for Earthquake Engineering, 50(4), 494-503. https://doi.org/10.5459/bnzsee.50.4.494-503