Seismic performance of masonry buildings in Iraq
Frak S. Alkenanee1, Thaer M. S. Alrudaini2
1Department of School Buildings. Directorate General for Education of Dhi Qar, Dhi Qar, Iraq
2Department of Civil Engineering, College of Engineering, University of Basrah, Basrah, Iraq
Masonry buildings in seismic active regions experienced severe damages and collapses during earthquakes. Many researches were published concerning the seismic assessment of masonry buildings. Almost, all previous studies focused on historical buildings located in different regions in the world. This paper evaluates the seismic performance of ordinary residential masonry buildings located in three different regions in Iraq with various seismic intensities. Masonry buildings included houses, public and commercial buildings are common construction practice in Iraq. A three dimensional finite element modeling was adopted for the investigations in which nonlinear static pushover analyses were conducted to derive capacity curves of the building models. The finite element model was verified against experimental results presented in the literature. Capacity curves were compared with seismic capacity demands derived for each building model in both perpendicular principle axes. Two house building models with semi-regular and irregular plan layouts were considered in the investigations. The influence of the strength of the local clay bricks and the quality of the mortar on the seismic performance of the buildings was considered. Investigations have demonstrated that the plan layout and the strength of bricks and mortar are significantly influencing the seismic performance of the considered masonry buildings. For the considered models, the base shear capacity of the semi-regular house and that for the irregular house model have increased up to 233 % and 100 %, respectively by increasing strength of clay bricks from 9 MPa to 18 MPa. Using cement sand mortar with a compressive strength of 15.2 MPa rather than lime mortar that have compressive strength equal to 3.1 MPa contributes in increasing building shear capacity up to 20 %. Seismic vulnerability of masonry buildings in the considered cities with low to medium seismic intensities could be averted by using relatively high strength mortar and brick as well as adopting regular plans.
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