Bulletin of Earthquake Engineering

, Volume 16, Issue 12, pp 6191–6219 | Cite as

Seismic behaviour of masonry buildings built of low compressive strength units

  • Petra TrillerEmail author
  • Miha Tomaževič
  • Matija Gams
Original Research


Seismic behaviour of masonry buildings, built of low compressive strength units, is discussed. Although such materials have already been tested and approved for use from mechanical and thermal insulation point of view, the knowledge regarding their structural behaviour is still lacking. In order to investigate the resistance and deformation capacity of this particular type of masonry construction in seismic conditions, a series of eight walls and model of a two-storey full scale confined masonry building have been tested by subjecting the specimens to cyclic shear loads. All tests were conducted under a combination of constant vertical load and quasi static, cyclically imposed horizontal load. The behaviour of tested specimens was of typical shear type. Compared with the behaviour of plain masonry walls, the presence of tie-columns resulted into higher resistance and displacement capacity, as well as smaller lateral resistance degradation. The response of the model was determined by storey mechanism with predominant shear behaviour of the walls and failure mechanism of the same type as in the case of individual confined masonry walls. Adequate seismic behaviour of this particular masonry structural type can be expected under the condition that the buildings are built as confined masonry system with limited number of stories.


Seismic behaviour Low compressive strength units Expanded clay Cyclic shear tests Confined masonry 



The research presented in this article was carried out within the framework of research Project J2-6749, financed by the Slovenian Research Agency and a research Project, supported by Lafarge Cement d.o.o., Slovenia.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature B.V. 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Slovenian National Building and Civil Engineering InstituteLjubljanaSlovenia

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