1003 Computational Modeling of Masonry Structures

Elio Sacco, Università di Cassino e del Lazio Meridionale
Daniela Addessi, Sapienza Università di Roma
Miguel Cervera, Universitat Politecnica de Catalunya
Masonry buildings are a large part of the historic and architectural heritage in many countries. The assessment of their safety and the designing of repair and strengthening interventions are challenging tasks. Although a number of empirical procedures have been developed and adopted in the past, these can fail in presence of irregular geometries, composite materials and severe loads, such as seismic actions.
Indeed, masonry is a heterogeneous material made of the regular or irregular assemblage of units, blocks and bricks, and mortar, with various geometries, arrangement and mechanical properties. Moreover, the constituents usually exhibit nonlinear constitutive behavior, characterized by the presence of degrading and plasticity inelastic effects.
Thus, the resulting masonry mechanical response is quite complex, being non symmetric, anisotropic and strongly nonlinear.
The increasingly availability of computational resources have prompted the formulation of efficient numerical procedures to accurately evaluate the masonry structural response. A number of approaches can be quoted and classified according to the scale at which masonry is analyzed.
Micromechanical approaches separately modeling units, mortar and interfaces between them are certainly the most accurate, but very computationally expensive. On the other hand, macromechanical models, considering the masonry as an equivalent continuum medium, require the introduction of a constitutive law for the homogenized material. Although these approaches significantly reduce the computational costs, the identification of the material parameters and the evolution laws for the inelastic variables can be a hard task. Recent decades have seen the development of multi-scale techniques, which represent a fair compromise between accuracy and computational burden, thanks to the possible parallelization of the processes. These rely on the coupling of the macro and micro scales, adopting a continuum homogenized medium at the macro structural level and a detailed modeling of the constituents at the micro scale. Finally, simplified approaches can be cited based on macro-elements discretization of the masonry buildings.
Concerning the solution procedures, usually finite element techniques have been adopted, although other methods have been proposed, such as discrete element, virtual element and isogeometric analysis.
Aim of the proposed mini-symposium is to collect the most recent research contributions on these topics and to discuss on the current and future developments.