25 Février – Thesis defense - Vincent Venzal

10 h Amphi Labri / Building A30 (Talence campus)

Discrete modelling of the mechanical behaviour of stone masonry structures. Experimental aspects - Energy analysis

This work aims to develop a design code suitable for structural masonry design. Discrete element code LMGC90 is chosen as basis of the design code for its capacity to consider masonry discontinuities. A general frictional cohesive zone model (FCZM) is proposed to describe the progressive damage and the release of energy due to the quasi-brittle behavior of materials and to the friction of the interface stone-mortar. Under combined traction and shear loadings, a mixed-mode response based on pure Mode I and Mode II cohesive behaviors is proposed. Under combined compression and shear loadings, a coupling between Mode II cohesive behavior and frictional behavior based on the damage level is proposed and leads to a progressive rising of the frictional stress associated with the softening part of the cohesive behavior of the interface. On this basis, cohesive and frictional parameters of the FCZM are estimated from two characterization tests (direct tensile and direct shear) carried out on samples of limestone blocks assembled by lime mortar joint. A general validation is proposed at the scale of a masonry wall submitted to a shear fracture test under constant vertical load. The confrontation of experimental and simulated responses provides a large validation basis because all the loading modes considered in FCZM are present in the wall during the shear test. If the static of the experimental responses is well described by the model using the parameters resulting from the characterization tests, the kinematic of the responses needs calibrating the elastic properties of the stone blocks and degrading the cohesive properties of the interfaces through a uniform initial damage field. On this basis, the use of a nonuniform initial damage field allows matching the experimental variability observed in the location and chronology of the  fracture mechanisms of tested walls.

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