Luca Umberto Argiento Alessandra Maione Claudia Casapulla


In this paper a macro-block model accounting for frictional resistances is presented to assess the lateral strength of a multi-storey masonry block wall. The kinematic approach of limit analysis is used to define the load factor causing the onset of rocking-sliding mechanism under in-plane horizontal loading. A dry frictional contact condition is assumed at the rigid block interfaces, according to the Coulomb's law with non-associated flow rule. The key aspect of the proposed approach is the introduction of a criterion to evaluate the contribution of the actual frictional resistances depending on the inclination angle of the crack line. An accurate assessment of the frictional resistances is also obtained by distinguishing two different contributions (the wall own weight and additional vertical loads) and their application points. Hence, a sensitivity analysis is performed with respect to the overloading condition, the friction coefficient, and geometrical parameters such as the shape ratios of the wall and the unit block and the number of rows.  The analytical results of the proposed model are also validated against results from other existing macro and micro-block modelling approaches in terms of load factor. The comparison confirms the reliability of the proposed model that allows, with similar results, great simplification of the computational effort with respect to micro-block models.


SI: Design of Civil Environmental Engineering