QUICK UPDATE: Demi just had her paper published ‘Assessing the Stability of Unreinforced Masonry Arches and Vaults: A Comparison of Analytical and Numerical Strategies’, in the Journal of Architectural Heritage. You can find it here
This post is second in a series covering different assessment methods for stability of masonry structures. Part 1 covered classical and equilibrium methods; this post covers suitable numerical modeling techniques as well as different examples of physical modeling for masonry stability.
4. Numerical modeling
Several methods of numerical modeling for masonry structures exist, as demonstrated by the flowchart in Fig. 10.
As the first level of Fig. 10 suggests, numerical modeling of masonry structures can be divided into four main categories: macro-modeling, homogenized modeling, simplified micro-modeling, and detailed micro-modeling. Asteris et al.  provide discussions, summarized below with some additions where noted, on the differences between these modeling approaches. Fig. 11 also depicts the different numerical modeling approaches. In this section, macro-modeling and simplified micro-modeling are the focus.
4.1 Macro-modeling: masonry as a one-phase material
The macro-modeling approach models both bricks and mortar (or all bricks, in the case of dry masonry) as a homogeneous continuum as in Fig. 11(b). As the subsets under macro-modeling in Fig. 10 suggest, these numerical models are typically finite element models.
This post reflects some of the storyline that Prof. Adriaenssens, invited by the Broodthaers Society of America, will be telling on Tuesday, March 28, 6:30–8pm at Hauser & Wirth Bookshop and Roth Bar, 548 West 22nd Street, New York, NY 10011. Introduction The efficiency of shells is often exemplified by examples of nature. In particular the avarian egg shell and the sea shell come to mind. A large … Continue reading Belgian Shell Art and Architecture : Marcel Broodthaers and Andre Paduart
William F. Baker, also known as Bill Baker, is one of the leading structural engineers of our generation. Baker was the principal engineer of many buildings including the Burj Khalifa (Dubai, 2004) and the Broadgate Exchange House (London, 1990) and can be considered as the exponent of the innovative structural engineering tradition cultivated at Skidmore, Owings & Merrill. Sigrid Adriaenssens: What is the SOM approach … Continue reading What I am thinking: Bill Baker at SOM
Our Princeton alum, Anjali Mehrotra, is currently pursuing a PhD in historic masonry structures at the University of Cambridge, UK. We asked Anjali to take us on a campus tour in search of structural surfaces. This is what she showed us. There is an abundance of vaulted structures in Cambridge, including the main gates of Corpus Christi College, Trinity College and St John’s College, which … Continue reading What to see when visiting Cambridge, UK
Check out this video and like it on YouTube. By 2050, 70% of the world’s population will live in cities. Structural engineers envision, design and construct the bridges and long‐span buildings those city dwellers depend on daily. The construction industry is one of most resource‐intensive sectors, and yet our urban infrastructure continues to be built in the massive tradition in which strength is pursued … Continue reading Prof. A’s Tedx Talk: Designing for strength, economy and beauty