A three-dimensional approach to the Extended Limit Analysis of Reinforced Masonry

López López D., Roca P., Liew A., Méndez Echenagucia T., Van Mele T. and Block P.
doi: 10.1016/j.istruc.2021.06.013

The Extended Limit Analysis of Reinforced Masonry (ELARM) is a simple and user-friendly method for the design and structural analysis of singly-curved, reinforced tile vaults [1]. It is based on limit analysis but takes into account the reinforcement’s contribution to the composite cross-section’s bending capacity.

A three-dimensional approach to ELARM is presented in this paper. The theoretical framework to understand the implications and limitations of extending ELARM to fully 3D structures is described, together with the strategies to carry out the leap from 2D to 3D. This extension is a lower-bound approach for the design of reinforced masonry, reinforced concrete and concrete-masonry composite shells and the assessment of their strength and stability against external loading.

The new, extended method is implemented computationally to speed up the iterative processes, provide quick structural feedback, offer immediate results and allow for user-interactive form-finding and optimisation procedures. Different applications of the developed tool are described through the presentation of examples, including reinforcement optimisation, a form-finding process and a case with a shape beyond funicular geometry.

[1] D. López López, P. Roca, A. Liew, T. Van Mele, P. Block
Tile vaults as integrated formwork for reinforced concrete: Construction, experimental testing and a method for the design and analysis of two-dimensional structures
Eng Struct, 188 (2019), pp. 233-248, 10.1016/j.engstruct.2019.03.034


    author  = "López López D. and Roca P. and Liew A. and Méndez Echenagucia, T. and Van Mele T. and Block P.",
    title   = "A three-dimensional approach to the Extended Limit Analysis of Reinforced Masonry",
    journal = "Structures",
    year    = "2022",
    volume  = "35",
    number  = "",
    pages   = "1062-1077",
    month   = "January",
    doi     = "10.1016/j.istruc.2021.06.013",
    note    = "",

Related publications

López López D., Van Mele T. and Block P.The combination of tile vaults with reinforcement and concrete,International Journal of Architectural Heritage,13(6): 782-798,2019.
López López D., Van Mele T. and Block P.Dieste, González Zuleta and Sánchez del Río: Three approaches to reinforced-brick shell structures,Proceedings of the 10th International Conference on Structural Analysis of Historical Constructions,K. Van Balen and E. Verstrynge (editors),: 571-578,CRC PressLeuven, Belgium,2016 (September).


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