Published in International Journal of Architectural Heritage Vol. 12 (3), pp. 432-447, 2017
Finite element macro-modeling approaches are widely used for the analysis of large-scale masonry structures. Despite their efficiency, they still face two important challenges: the realistic representation of damage and a reasonable independency of the numerical results to the used discretization. In this work, the classical smeared crack approach is enhanced with a crack-tracking algorithm, originating from the analysis of localized cracking in quasi-brittle materials. The proposed algorithm is for the first time applied to a large-scale wall exhibiting multiple shear and flexural cracking. Discussion covers structural aspects, as the response of the structure under different assumptions regarding the floor rigidity, but also numerical issues, commonly overlooked in the simulation of large structures, such the mesh-dependency of the numerical results.
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