Materiales de Construcción, Vol 58, No 291 (2008)

Experimental scale model study of cracking in brick masonry under tensile and shear stress

E. Reyes Pozo
Universidad Politécnica de Madrid, E.T.S. Madrid, Spain

M. J. Casati Calzada
Universidad Politécnica de Madrid, E.U.I.T. Aeronáuticos, Madrid, Spain

J. C. Gálvez Ruiz
Universidad Politécnica de Madrid, E.T.S. Madrid, Spain


This article discusses the results of research conducted on the failure behaviour of brick masonry under tensile and shear stress. The study was designed to develop test models and generate experimental results able to provide greater insight into tensile and shear stresses cracking in brick masonry. The results of a campaign conducted with two types of specimens are discussed: 1) double-edge notched specimens under non-symmetrical compression stress, and 2) three point bending specimens under nonsymmetrical loading. Tests were run on specimens of similar size (similarity rate 2) and different bed joint orientation to determine how bed joint orientation affects crack propagation. The tests were conducted on scale models (1/4) of a single wythe, stretcher bond brickwork masonry wall one half foot thick.


brick masonry; mechanical properties; cracking; tensile stress; shear

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