Extending analysis capabilities of equivalent frame models for masonry structures

Andrea Pena
University of Pavia, Italy

The equivalent frame modelling of masonry buildings is widely used if not a real standard for the nonlinear seismic analysis of masonry buildings. Originally created to represent the in-plane behaviour of the walls in the plan, it was subsequently applied for the analysis of three-dimensional models of entire buildings. In current standards and also in the new draft of Eurocode 8 this modelling technique retains a key role for the analysis of masonry structures.

Recent developments and applications reflect the analysis capabilities subsequently added to this modelling technique, often derived after calibration with experimental results and/or detailed numerical models. They include pushover and time-history analysis features, inclusion of strength and stiffness contributions of the out-of-plane response of walls and floor/roof diaphragms, discretization of walls with irregular opening distributions, modelling strategies applicable to complex buildings with flexible diaphragms, modelling of cavity wall buildings.

Case studies and significant examples illustrate the importance of these modelling devices in improving the prediction of the seismic response.