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Project: Experimental and Analytical Investigation of Nonrectangular Walls Under Multidirectional Loads

By Shawn Rice1, Kari Klaboe1, Santiago Pujol

1. Purdue University



Published on


image Engineers often use structural walls in buildings to serve as the primary lateral load resisting elements because of their large in-plane stiffness and strength which enables them to carry large lateral loads due to wind and earthquakes while also minimizing drifts. Architects often prefer the walls to be concentrated around hallways or elevator cores to minimize their impact on the floor plan and to maximize available window space. As a consequence, linear rectangular walls are often combined to form I-, C-, T- and L-shapes. These configurations lead to complicated interactions between the wall segments; assuming that the linear segments of the walls resist lateral loads in each direction independently is no longer reasonable. Because the walls often become non-symmetric (e.g., C-, T- and L-shaped configurations), the uniaxial behavior of the wall is also affected.

Previous laboratory testing of T-shaped walls loaded uniaxially along the direction of the stem of the T has indicated that these walls can be detailed using methods similar to those used for rectangular walls. However, multidirectional loading of these walls has not been carried out at large scales. This more complicated but more realistic loading scheme will provide additional understanding of the behavior of these members under real-world loading histories. The Multi-Axial Subassemblage Testing (MAST) System at the University of Minnesota, part of the National Science Foundation (NSF) George E. Brown, Jr. Network for Earthquake Engineering Simulation (NEES), is the first facility of its kind capable of applying full 6-DOF mixed-mode loading to large-scale specimens. In this project 1 half-scale T-shaped wall, 1 three-quarter-scale T-shaped wall, and 3 half-scale rectangular walls were tested.

To access the project in the NEES Repository click here.

Keywords: Reinforced Concrete, T-shaped Wall, Structural Wall, Shear Wall, Multi-directional Load

Cite this work

Researchers should cite this work as follows:

  • Shawn Rice; Kari Klaboe; Santiago Pujol (2009), "Project: Experimental and Analytical Investigation of Nonrectangular Walls Under Multidirectional Loads,"

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In This Series

  1. Experiment 1: RWN - Continuous Reinforcement

    28 Jul 2009 |

    Testing of a half-scale, four story rectangular wall with continuous reinforcement.

    Start Series

  2. Experiment 2: RWC - Couplers

    04 Aug 2009 |

    Testing of a half-scale, four story rectangular wall with mechanical couplers.