Benchmarking the seismic assessment of unreinforced masonry buildings from a blind prediction test

Parisse F., Cattari S., Marques R., Lourenco P. B., Magenes G., Beyer K., ...More

STRUCTURES, vol.31, pp.982-1005, 2021 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 31
  • Publication Date: 2021
  • Doi Number: 10.1016/j.istruc.2021.01.096
  • Journal Name: STRUCTURES
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.982-1005
  • Keywords: URM buildings, Seismic assessment, Numerical simulation, Modeling approaches, Analysis methods, Limit state criteria, Damage predictions, Capacity curves, PGA predictions, STATIC CYCLIC TESTS, ELEMENT MODEL, PERFORMANCE, STRENGTH, BEHAVIOR, DAMAGE, WALLS
  • Middle East Technical University Affiliated: Yes


This paper presents a benchmark exercise for the seismic assessment of unreinforced masonry (URM) buildings as a follow-up of a blind prediction test organized in the context of the European Conference of Earthquake Engineering Series. The blind prediction exercise was aimed at better defining the open issues in current procedures for modeling and performing seismic analysis of URM buildings, by highlighting the uncertainty that can influence the results. This work presents an overview of the approaches used by different research teams and the scope of predictions. The benchmark structure was a three-story building with traditional European architecture from which two Cases were considered: A) stone masonry walls and flexible horizontal diaphragms and B) brick masonry walls and rigid horizontal diaphragms. A wide range of approaches was used by the participating teams concerning modeling strategies, methods of analysis and criteria for the attainment of limit states, which are here addressed as potential sources for the dispersion of predictions. The results were compared in terms of capacity curves, predicted failure mechanisms compatible with the fulfillment of limit states of near collapse and damage limitation, and related minimum values of peak ground acceleration (PGA). The results show an overall good agreement for damage patterns and collapse mechanisms in both benchmark structures, presenting some differences in the type of failure mode and its extent. However, the scatter of predicted capacity curves and critical PGAs is very high, especially for the Case with brick masonry and rigid diaphragms, indicating that clearer procedures in the building codes are required for professionals.