Within the framework of ENDURE I indent to spend a relatively short training period in the field of structural and energy upgrading of existing masonry structures, including those of historic value, through the use of advanced textile-based composite materials. My work will address the conceptual and detailed design of systems for masonry upgrading (both mechanical and energy-related) through the combination of textiles and mortars. The investigation will include conceptual studies, optimization, experimental tasks and development of design rules.
Fig.1 - Retrofitting of masonry wall using textiles in combination with mortars
The project aims at developing concepts for the structural and energy retrofitting of masonry structures (including historic ones) using textile-based composites. The main goals are to:
In order to acquire knowledge, the work started (only a couple of months ago) with a literature survey on textile-based composite materials (textile-reinforced mortars) and their application as external reinforcement in masonry structures. Studies so far have focused on structural aspects, such as the bond between composites and masonry and the mechanical behaviour of masonry subjected to in-plane or out-of-plane loading. Work in progress within the framework of the project deals with the design (conceptual and detailed) of a novel system that will offer both structural and energy upgrading.
At the same time, a number of specimens comprising masonry wallettes strengthened in out-of-plane bending using textile-reinforced mortars in combination with thermal insulation materials have been designed and are about to be constructed (a typical photo from an older but similar specimen is shown in Fig.2). Variables under investigation include the number of textile layers, the location of reinforcement and the thermal insulation and the properties of the insulation material.
Fig.2 - Retrofitting of masonry wall using textiles in combination with mortars
It is expected that testing will start in March or April 2016 and will have a duration of 4-5 months.