Nonlinear Cyclic Truss Model for Beam-Column Joints of Non-ductile RC Frames

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Virginia Tech


Reinforced concrete (RC) moment frames comprise a significant portion of the built environment in areas with seismic hazards. The beam-to-column joints of these frames are key components that have a significant impact on the structure's behavior. Modern detailing provides sufficient strength within these joints to transfer the forces between the beams and the columns during a seismic event, but existing structures built with poor detailing are still quite prevalent. Identifying the need and extent of retrofits to ensure public safety through nondestructive means is of primary importance. Existing models used to analyze the performance of RC beam-to-column joints have either been developed for modern, well-detailed joints or are simplified so that they do not capture a broad range of phenomena.

The present study is aimed to extend a modeling technique based on the nonlinear truss analogy to the analysis of RC beam-to-column joints under cyclic loads. Steel and concrete elements were arranged into a lattice truss structure with zero-length bond-slip springs connecting them. A new steel model was implemented to more accurately capture the constitutive behavior of reinforcing bars. The joint modeling approach captured well the shear response of the joint. It also provided a good indication of the distribution of forces within the joint.

The model was validated against three recently tested beam-column subassemblies. These tests represented the detailing practice of poorly-detailed RC moment frames. The analytical results were in good agreement with the experimental data in terms of initial stiffness, strength and damage pattern through the joint.



Reinforced Concrete, Beam-Column Joints, Seismic Analysis