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The influence of interface geometry, stiffness, and crushing on the dynamic response of masonry collapse mechanisms

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DeJong, MJ 


jats:titleSummary</jats:title>jats:pFailure of masonry structures generally occurs via specific collapse mechanisms which have been well documented. Using rocking dynamics, equations of motion have been derived for a number of different failure mechanisms ranging from the simple overturning of a single block to more complicated mechanisms. However, most of the equations of motion derived thus far assume that the structures can be modelled as rigid bodies rocking on rigid interfaces with an infinite compressive strength—which is not always the case. In fact, crushing of masonry—commonly observed in larger scale constructions and vertically restrained walls—can lead to a reduction in the dynamic capacity of these structures. This paper rederives the rocking equation of motion to account for the influence of flexible interfaces, characterized by a specific interface stiffness as well as finite compressive strength. The interface now includes a continually shifting rotation point, the location of which depends not only on the material properties of the interface but also on its geometry. Expressions have thus also been derived for interfaces of different geometries, and parametric studies conducted to gauge their influence on dynamic response. The new interface formulations are also implemented within a new analytical modelling tool that provides a novel approach to the dynamic analysis of masonry collapse mechanisms. Finally, this tool is exemplified, along with the importance of the interface formulation, by evaluating the collapse of the Dharahara Tower in Kathmandu, which was almost completely destroyed during the 2015 Gorkha earthquake.</jats:p>



analytical modelling tools, crushing effects, interface geometry, interface stiffness, masonry collapse mechanisms, rocking dynamics

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Earthquake Engineering and Structural Dynamics

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Cambridge Commonwealth, European & International Trust