Excellence in Research and Innovation for Humanity

International Science Index

Commenced in January 1999 Frequency: Monthly Edition: International Paper Count: 33

Civil, Environmental, Structural, Construction and Architectural Engineering

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  • 33
    Directing the Forensic Investigation of a Catastrophic Structure Collapse: The Jacksonville Parking Garage Collapse
    This paper discusses the forensic investigation of a fatality-involved catastrophic structure collapse and the special challenges faced when tasked with directing such an effort. While this paper discusses the investigation’s findings and the outcome of the event; this paper’s primary focus is on the challenges faced directing a forensic investigation that requires coordinating with governmental oversight while also having to accommodate multiple parties’ investigative teams. In particular the challenges discussed within this paper included maintaining on-site safety and operations while accommodating outside investigator’s interests. In addition this paper discusses unique challenges that one may face such as what to do about unethical conduct of interested party’s investigative teams, “off the record” sharing of information, and clandestinely transmitted evidence.
    Application of Flexi-Wall in Noise Barriers Renewal
    This paper presents an experimental study on structural performance of an innovative noise barrier consisting of poly-block, light polyurethane foam (LPF) and polyurea. This wall system (flexi-wall) is intended to be employed as a vertical extension to existing sound barriers in an accelerated construction method. To aid in the wall design, several mechanical tests were conducted on LPF specimens and two full-scale walls were then fabricated employing the same LPF material. The full-scale walls were subjected to lateral loading in order to establish their lateral resistance. A cyclic fatigue test was also performed on a full-scale flexi-wall in order to evaluate the performance of the wall under a repetitive loading condition. The result of the experiments indicated the suitability of flexi-wall in accelerated construction and confirmed that the structural performance of the wall system under lateral loading is satisfactory for the sound barrier application. The experimental results were discussed and a preliminary design procedure for application of flexi-wall in sound barrier applications was also developed.
    Traffic Density Measurement by Automatic Detection of Vehicles Using Gradient Vectors from Aerial Images
    This paper presents a new automatic vehicle detection method from very high resolution aerial images to measure traffic density. The proposed method starts by extracting road regions from image using road vector data. Then, the road image is divided into equal sections considering resolution of the images. Gradient vectors of the road image are computed from edge map of the corresponding image. Gradient vectors on the each boundary of the sections are divided where the gradient vectors significantly change their directions. Finally, number of vehicles in each section is carried out by calculating the standard deviation of the gradient vectors in each group and accepting the group as vehicle that has standard deviation above predefined threshold value. The proposed method was tested in four very high resolution aerial images acquired from Istanbul, Turkey which illustrate roads and vehicles with diverse characteristics. The results show the reliability of the proposed method in detecting vehicles by producing 86% overall F1 accuracy value.
    The Effects of SCMs on the Mechanical Properties and Durability of Fibre Cement Plates
    Fibre cement plates, often used in construction, generally are made using quartz as an inert material, cement as a binder and cellulose as a fibre. This paper, first of all, investigates the mechanical properties and durability of fibre cement plates when quartz is both partly and fully replaced with diatomite. Diatomite does not only have lower density compared to quartz but also has high pozzolanic activity. The main objective of this paper is the investigation of the effects of supplementary cementing materials (SCMs) on the short and long term mechanical properties and durability characteristics of fibre cement plates prepared using diatomite. Supplementary cementing materials such as ground granulated blast furnace slug (GGBS) and fly ash (FA) are used in this study. Volume proportions of 10, 20, 30 and 40% of GGBS and FA are used as partial replacement materials to cement. Short and long term mechanical properties such as compressive and flexural strengths as well as sorptivity characteristics and mass were investigated. Consistency and setting time at each replacement levels of SCMs were also recorded. The effects of using supplementary cementing materials on the carbonation and sulphate resistance of fibre cement plates were then experimented. The results, first of all, show that the use of diatomite as a full or partial replacement to quartz resulted in a systematic decrease in total mass of the fibre cement plates. The reduction of mass was largely due to the lower density and finer particle size of diatomite compared to quartz. The use of diatomite did not only reduce the mass of these plates but also increased the compressive strength significantly as a result of its high pozzolanic activity. The replacement levels of both GGBS and FA resulted in a systematic decrease in short term compressive strength with increasing replacement levels. This was essentially expected as the total rate of hydration is much lower in GGBS and FA than that of cement. Long term results however, indicated that the compressive strength of fibre cement plates prepared using both GGBS and FA increases with time and hence the compressive strength of plates prepared using SCMs is either equivalent or more than the compressive strength of plates prepared using cement alone. Durability characteristics of fibre cement plates prepared using SCMs were enhanced significantly. Measurements of sopritivty characteristics were also indicated that the plates prepared using SCMs has much lower water absorption capacities compared to plates prepared cement alone. Much higher resistance to carbonation and sulphate attach were observed with plates prepared using SCMs. The results presented in this paper show that the use of SCMs does not only support the production of more sustainable construction materials but also enhances the mechanical properties and durability characteristics of fibre cement plates.
    Impact of Natural Period and Epicentral Distance on Storey Lateral Displacements
    The goal of the paper is to highlight the effect of the building design and epicentral distance on the storey lateral displacements, for several reinforced concrete buildings (6, 9 and 12 stories). These structures are subjected to seismic accelerations from the Boumerdes earthquake (Algeria, May 21st, Mw = 6.8). Using the response spectrum method (modal spectral approach), the analysis is performed in both longitudinal and transverse directions. The building design is expressed through the fundamental period and epicentral distance is used to represent the earthquake effect variation on storey lateral displacements and interstory drift for the considered buildings.
    A Novel Cold Asphalt Concrete Mixture for Heavily Trafficked Binder Course
    This study aims at developing a novel cold asphalt concrete binder course mixture by using Ordinary Portland Cement (OPC) as a replacement for conventional mineral filler (0%-100%) with new by-product material (LJMU-A2) used as a supplementary cementitious material. With this purpose, cold asphalt concrete binder course mixtures with cationic emulsions were studied by means of stiffness modulus whereas water sensitivity was assessed by measuring the stiffness modulus ratio before and after sample conditioning. The results indicate that a substantial enhancement in the stiffness modulus and a considerable improvement of water sensitivity resistance is achieved by adding LJMU-A2 to the cold asphalt mixtures as a supplementary cementitious material. Moreover, the addition of LJMU-A2 to those mixtures leads to a stiffness modulus after 2-day curing compared to that obtained with Portland cement, which occurs after 7-day curing.
    Compressive Strength and Capillary Water Absorption of Concrete Containing Recycled Aggregate
    This paper presents results of compressive strength, capillary water absorption, and density tests conducted on concrete containing recycled aggregate (RCA) which is obtained from structural waste generated by the construction industry in Turkey. In the experiments, 0%, 15%, 30%, 45% and 60% of the normal (natural) coarse aggregate was replaced by the recycled aggregate. Maximum aggregate particle sizes were selected as 16 mm, 22,4 mm and 31,5 mm; and 0,06%, 0,13% and 0,20% of air-entraining agent (AEA) were used in mixtures. Fly ash and superplasticizer were used as a mineral and chemical admixture, respectively. The same type (CEM I 42.5) and constant dosage of cement were used in the study. Water/cement ratio was kept constant as 0.53 for all mixture. It was concluded that capillary water absorption, compressive strength, and density of concrete decreased with increasing RCA ratio. Increasing in maximum aggregate particle size and amount of AEA also affect the properties of concrete significantly.
    An Analytical Study of FRP-Concrete Bridge Superstructures
    It is a major challenge to build a bridge superstructure that has long-term durability and low maintenance requirements. A solution to this challenge may be to use new materials or to implement new structural systems. Fiber Reinforced Polymer (FRP) composites have continued to play an important role in solving some of persistent problems in infrastructure applications because of its high specific strength, light weight, and durability. In this study, the concept of the hybrid FRP-concrete structural systems is applied to a bridge superstructure. The hybrid FRP-concrete bridge superstructure is intended to have durable, structurally sound, and cost effective hybrid system that will take full advantage of the inherent properties of both FRP materials and concrete. In this study, two hybrid FRP-concrete bridge systems were investigated. The first system consists of trapezoidal cell units forming a bridge superstructure. The second one is formed by arch cells. The two systems rely on using cellular components to form the core of the bridge superstructure, and an outer shell to warp around those cells to form the integral unit of the bridge. Both systems were investigated analytically by using finite element (FE) analysis. From the rigorous FE studies, it was concluded that first system is more efficient than the second.
    Analytical Evaluation on Structural Performance and Optimum Section of CHS Damper
    This study aims to evaluate the effective size, section and structural characteristics of circular hollow steel (CHS) damper. CHS damper is among steel dampers which are used widely for seismic energy dissipation because they are easy to install, maintain and are inexpensive. CHS damper dissipates seismic energy through metallic deformation due to the geometrical elasticity of circular shape and fatigue resistance around connection part. After calculating the effective size, which is found to be height to diameter ratio of √3, nonlinear FE analyses were carried out to evaluate the structural characteristics and effective section (diameter-to-ratio).
    Reuse of Huge Industrial Areas
    Brownfields are one of the most important problems that must be solved by today's cities. The topic of this article is description of developing a comprehensive transformation of postindustrial area of the former iron factory national cultural heritage lower Vítkovice. City of Ostrava used to be industrial superpower of the Czechoslovak Republic, especially in the area of coal mining and iron production, after declining industrial production and mining in the 80s left many unused areas of former factories generally brownfields and backfields. Since the late 90s we are observing how the city officials or private entities seeking to remedy this situation. Regeneration of brownfields is a very expensive and long-term process. The area is now rebuilt for tourists and residents of the city in the entertainment, cultural, and social center. It was necessary do the reconstruction of the industrial monuments. Equally important was the construction of new buildings, which helped reusing of the entire complex. This is a unique example of transformation of technical monuments and completion of necessary new objects, so that the area could start working again and reintegrate back into the urban system.
    Life Cycle Assessment of Residential Buildings: A Case Study in Canada
    Residential buildings consume significant amounts of energy and produce large amount of emissions and waste. However, there is a substantial potential for energy savings in this sector which needs to be evaluated over the life cycle of residential buildings. Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) methodology has been employed to study the primary energy uses and associated environmental impacts of different phases (i.e., product, construction, use, end of life, and beyond building life) for residential buildings. Four different alternatives of residential buildings in Vancouver (BC, Canada) with a 50-year lifespan have been evaluated, including High Rise Apartment (HRA), Low Rise Apartment (LRA), Single family Attached House (SAH), and Single family Detached House (SDH). Life cycle performance of the buildings is evaluated for embodied energy, embodied environmental impacts, operational energy, operational environmental impacts, total life-cycle energy, and total life cycle environmental impacts. Estimation of operational energy and LCA are performed using DesignBuilder software and Athena Impact estimator software respectively. The study results revealed that over the life span of the buildings, the relationship between the energy use and the environmental impacts are identical. LRA is found to be the best alternative in terms of embodied energy use and embodied environmental impacts; while, HRA showed the best life-cycle performance in terms of minimum energy use and environmental impacts. Sensitivity analysis has also been carried out to study the influence of building service lifespan over 50, 75, and 100 years on the relative significance of embodied energy and total life cycle energy. The life-cycle energy requirements for SDH are found to be a significant component among the four types of residential buildings. The overall disclose that the primary operations of these buildings accounts for 90% of the total life cycle energy which far outweighs minor differences in embodied effects between the buildings.
    The Feasibility of Using Milled Glass Wastes in Concrete to Resist Freezing-Thawing Action
    The using of waste materials in the construction industry can reduce the dependence on the natural aggregates which are going at the end to deplete. The glass waste is generated in a huge amount which can make one of its disposals in concrete industry effective not only as a green solution but also as an advantage to enhance the performance of mechanical properties and durability of concrete. This article reports the performance of concrete specimens containing different percentages of milled glass waste as a partial replacement of cement (Powder), when they are subject to cycles of freezing and thawing. The tests were conducted on 75-mm cubes and 75 x 75 x 300-mm prisms. Compressive strength based on laboratory testing and non-destructive ultrasonic pulse velocity test were performed during the action of freezing-thawing cycles (F/T). The results revealed that the incorporation of glass waste in concrete mixtures is not only feasible but also showed generally better strength and durability performance than control concrete mixture. It may be said that the recycling of waste glass in concrete mixes is not only a disposal way, but also it can be an exploitation in concrete industry.
    An Environmentally Friendly Approach towards the Conservation of Vernacular Architecture
    Contemporary theories of sustainability, concerning the natural and built environment, have recently introduced an environmental attitude towards the architectural design that, in turn, affects the practice of conservation and reuse of the existing building stock. This paper presents an environmentally friendly approach towards the conservation of vernacular architecture and it is based on the results of a research program which involved the investigation of sustainable design elements of traditional buildings in Cyprus. The research in question showed that Cypriot vernacular architecture gave more emphasis on cooling rather than heating strategies. Another notable finding of the investigation was the great importance given to courtyards as they enhance considerably, and in various ways, the microclimatic conditions of the immediate environment with favorable results throughout the year. Moreover, it was shown that the reduction in temperature fluctuation observed in the closed and semi-open spaces, compared to the respective temperature fluctuation of the external environment -due to the thermal inertia of the building envelope- helps towards the achievement of more comfortable living conditions within traditional dwellings. This paper concludes with a proposal of a sustainable approach towards the conservation of the existing environment and the introduction of new environmental criteria for the conservation of traditional buildings, beyond the aesthetic, morphological and structural ones that are generally applied.
    Impact of Design Choices on the Life Cycle Energy of Modern Buildings
    Traditionally, the embodied energy of design choices which reduce operational energy were assumed to have a negligible impact on the life cycle energy of buildings. However with new buildings having considerably lower operational energy, the significance of embodied energy increases. A life cycle assessment of a population of house designs was conducted in a mild and mixed climate zone. It was determined not only that embodied energy dominates life cycle energy, but that the impact on embodied of design choices was of equal significance to the impact on operational energy.
    Influence of Flexural Reinforcement on the Shear Strength of RC Beams without Stirrups
    Numerical investigations were conducted to study the influence of flexural reinforcement ratio on the diagonal cracking strength and ultimate shear strength of reinforced concrete (RC) beams without stirrups. Three-dimensional nonlinear finite element analyses (FEAs) of the beams with flexural reinforcement ratios ranging from 0.58% to 2.20% subjected to a mid-span concentrated load were carried out. It is observed that the load-deflection and loadstrain curves obtained from the numerical analyses agree with those obtained from the experiments. It is concluded that flexural reinforcement ratio has a significant effect on the shear strength and deflection capacity of RC beams without stirrups. The predictions of diagonal cracking strength and ultimate shear strength of beams obtained by using the equations defined by a number of codes and researchers are compared with each other and with the experimental values.
    Effective Design Factors for Bicycle-Friendly Streets
    Bicycle Level of Service (BLOS) is a measure for evaluating street conditions for cyclists. Currently, various methods are proposed for BLOS. These analytical methods however have some drawbacks: they usually assume cyclists as users that can share street facilities with motorized vehicles, it is not easy to link them to design process and they are not easy to follow. In addition, they only support a narrow range of cycling facilities and may not be applicable for all situations. Along this, the current paper introduces various effective design factors for bicycle-friendly streets. This study considers cyclists as users of streets who have special needs and facilities. Therefore, the key factors that influence BLOS based on different cycling facilities that are proposed by developed guidelines and literature are identified. The combination of these factors presents a complete set of effective design factors for bicycle-friendly streets. In addition, the weight of each factor in existing BLOS models is estimated and these effective factors are ranked based on these weights. These factors and their weights can be used in further studies to propose special bicycle-friendly street design model.
    Comparative Safety Performance Evaluation of Profiled Deck Composite Slab from the Use of Slope-Intercept and Partial Shear Methods
    The economic use and ease of construction of profiled deck composite slab is marred with the complex and un-economic strength verification required for the serviceability and general safety considerations. Beside these, albeit factors such as shear span length, deck geometries and mechanical frictions greatly influence the longitudinal shear strength, that determines the ultimate strength of profiled deck composite slab, and number of methods available for its determination; partial shear and slope-intercept are the two methods according to Euro-code 4 provision. However, the complexity associated with shear behavior of profiled deck composite slab, the use of these methods in determining the load carrying capacities of such slab yields different and conflicting values. This couple with the time and cost constraint associated with the strength verification is a source of concern that draws more attentions nowadays, the issue is critical. Treating some of these known shear strength influencing factors as random variables, the load carrying capacity violation of profiled deck composite slab from the use of the two-methods defined according to Euro-code 4 are determined using reliability approach, and comparatively studied. The study reveals safety values from the use of m-k method shows good standing compared with that from the partial shear method.
    Analyzing the Shearing-Layer Concept Applied to Urban Green System
    Currently, green rating systems are mainly utilized for correctly sizing mechanical and electrical systems, which have short lifetime expectancies. In these systems, passive solar and bio-climatic architecture, which have long lifetime expectancies, are neglected. Urban rating systems consider buildings and services in addition to neighborhoods and public transportation as integral parts of the built environment. The main goal of this study was to develop a more consistent point allocation system for urban building standards by using six different lifetime shearing layers: Site, Structure, Skin, Services, Space, and Stuff, each reflecting distinct environmental damages. This shearing-layer concept was applied to internationally well-known rating systems: Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) for Neighborhood Development, BRE Environmental Assessment Method (BREEAM) for Communities and Comprehensive Assessment System for Building Environmental Efficiency (CASBEE) for Urban Development. The results showed that LEED for Neighborhood Development and BREEAM for Communities focused on long-lifetime-expectancy building designs, whereas CASBEE for Urban Development gave equal importance to the Building and Service Layers. Moreover, although this rating system was applied using a building-scale assessment, “Urban Area + Buildings” focuses on a short-lifetime-expectancy system design, neglecting to improve the architectural design by considering bioclimatic and passive solar aspects.
    Long-Term Deformations of Concrete Structures
    Drying is a phenomenon that accompanies the hardening of hydraulic materials. This study is concerned the modelling of drying shrinkage of the hydraulic materials and the prediction of the rate of spontaneous deformations of hydraulic materials during hardening. The model developed takes consideration of the main factors affecting drying shrinkage. There was agreement between drying shrinkage predicted by the developed model and experimental results. In last we show that developed model describe the evolution of the drying shrinkage of high performances concretes correctly.
    Research on Static and Dynamic Behavior of New Combination of Aluminum Honeycomb Panel and Rod Single-layer Latticed Shell
    In addition to the advantages of light weight, resistant corrosion and ease of processing, aluminum is also applied to the long-span spatial structures. However, the elastic modulus of aluminum is lower than that of the steel. This paper combines the high performance aluminum honeycomb panel with the aluminum latticed shell, forming a new panel-and-rod composite shell structure. Through comparative analysis between the static and dynamic performance, the conclusion that the structure of composite shell is noticeably superior to the structure combined before.
    Application Research on Large Profiled Statues of Steel-Concrete Composite Shear Wall
    Twin steel plates-concrete composite shear walls are composed of a pair of steel plate layers and a concrete layer sandwiched between them, which have the characteristics of both reinforced concrete shear walls and steel plate shear walls. Twin steel plates-composite shear walls contain very high ultimsate bearing capacity and ductility, which have great potential to be applied in the super high-rise buildings and special structures. In this paper, we analyzed the basic characteristics and stress mechanism of the twin steel plates-composite shear walls. Specifically, we analyzed the effects of the steel plate thickness, wall thickness and concrete strength on the bearing capacity of the twin steel plates-composite shear walls. The analysis results indicate that: (1) the initial shear stiffness and ultimate shear-carrying capacity is not significantly affected by the thickness of concrete wall but by the class of concrete, (2) both factors significantly impact the shear distribution of the shear walls in ultimate shear-carrying capacity. The technique of twin steel plates-composite shear walls has been successfully applied in the construction of an 88-meter Huge Statue of Buddha located in Hunan Province, China. The analysis results and engineering experiences showed that the twin steel plates-composite shear walls have great potential for future research and applications.
    The Effect of Vertical Shear-Link in Improving the Seismic Performance of Structures with Eccentrically Bracing Systems
    Passive control methods can be utilized to build earthquake resistant structures, and also to strengthen the vulnerable ones. In this paper, we studied the effect of this system in increasing the ductility and energy dissipation and also modeled the behavior of this type of eccentric bracing, and compared the hysteresis diagram of the modeled samples with the laboratory samples. We studied several samples of frames with vertical shear-links in order to assess the behavior of this type of eccentric bracing. Each of these samples was modeled in finite element software ANSYS 9.0, and was analyzed under the static cyclic loading. It was found that vertical shear-links have a more stable hysteresis loops. Another analysis showed that using honeycomb beams as the horizontal beam along with steel reinforcement has no negative effect on the hysteresis behavior of the sample.
    Studying Frame-Resistant Steel Structures under near Field Ground Motion
    This paper presents the influence of the vertical seismic component on the non-linear dynamics analysis of three different structures. The subject structures were analyzed and designed according to recent codes. This paper considers three types of buildings: 5-, 10-, and 15-story buildings. The non-linear dynamics analysis of the structures with assuming elastic-perfectly-plastic behavior was performed using RAM PERFORM-3D software; the horizontal component was taken into consideration with and without the incorporation of the corresponding vertical component. Dynamic responses obtained for the horizontal component acting alone were compared with those obtained from the simultaneous application of both seismic components. The results show that the effect of the vertical component of ground motion may increase the axial load significantly in the interior columns and, consequently, the stories. The plastic mechanisms would be changed. The P-Delta effect is expected to increase. The punching base plate shear of the columns should be considered. Moreover, the vertical component increases the input energy when the structures exhibit inelastic behavior and are taller.
    Determining Earthquake Performances of Existing Reinforced Concrete Buildings by Using ANN
    In this study, an Artificial Neural Network (ANN) analytical method has been developed for analyzing earthquake performances of the Reinforced Concrete (RC) buildings. 66 RC buildings with four to ten storeys were subjected to performance analysis according to the parameters which are the existing material, loading and geometrical characteristics of the buildings. The selected parameters have been thought to be effective on the performance of RC buildings. In the performance analyses stage of the study, level of performance possible to be shown by these buildings in case of an earthquake was determined on the basis of the 4-grade performance levels specified in Turkish Earthquake Code-2007 (TEC-2007). After obtaining the 4-grade performance level, selected 23 parameters of each building have been matched with the performance level. In this stage, ANN-based fast evaluation algorithm mentioned above made an economic and rapid evaluation of four to ten storey RC buildings. According to the study, the prediction accuracy of ANN has been found about 74%.
    Research for Hollow Reinforced Concrete Bridge Piers in Korea
    Hollow section for bridge columns has some advantages. However, current seismic design codes do not provide design regulations for hollow bridge piers. There have been many experimental studied for hollow reinforced concrete piers in the world. But, Study for hollow section for bridge piers in Korea has been begun with approximately 2000s. There has been conducted experimental study for hollow piers of flexural controlled sections by Yeungnam University, Sung kyunkwan University, Korea Expressway Corporation in 2009. This study concluded that flexural controlled sections for hollow piers showed the similar behavior to solid sections. And there have been conducted experimental study for hollow piers of compression controlled sections by Yeungnam University, Korea Institute of Construction Technology in 2012. This study concluded that compression controlled sections for hollow piers showed compression fracture of concrete in inside wall face. Samsung Construction & Trading Corporation has been conducted study with Yeungnam University for reduce the quantity of reinforcement details about hollow piers. Reduce the quantity of reinforcement details are triangular cross tie. This study concluded that triangular reinforcement details showed the similar behavior as compared with existing reinforcement details.
    Comparative Spatial Analysis of a Re-arranged Hospital Building
    Analyzing the relation networks between the hospital buildings which have complex structure and distinctive spatial relationships is quite difficult. The hospital buildings which require specialty in spatial relationship solutions during design and selfinnovation through the developing technology should survive and keep giving service even after the disasters such as earthquakes. In this study, a hospital building where the load-bearing system was strengthened because of the insufficient earthquake performance and the construction of an additional building was required to meet the increasing need for space was discussed and a comparative spatial evaluation of the hospital building was made with regard to its status before the change and after the change. For this reason, spatial organizations of the building before change and after the change were analyzed by means of Space Syntax method and the effects of the change on space organization parameters were searched by applying an analytical procedure. Using Depthmap UCL software, Connectivity, Visual Mean Depth, Beta and Visual Integration analyses were conducted. Based on the data obtained after the analyses, it was seen that the relationships between spaces of the building increased after the change and the building has become more explicit and understandable for the occupants. Furthermore, it was determined according to findings of the analysis that the increase in depth causes difficulty in perceiving the spaces and the changes considering this problem generally ease spatial use.
    Pushover Analysis of Masonry Infilled Reinforced Concrete Frames for Performance Based Design for Near Field Earthquakes
    Non-linear dynamic time history analysis is considered as the most advanced and comprehensive analytical method for evaluating the seismic response and performance of multi-degree-of-freedom building structures under the influence of earthquake ground motions. However, effective and accurate application of the method requires the implementation of advanced hysteretic constitutive models of the various structural components including masonry infill panels. Sophisticated computational research tools that incorporate realistic hysteresis models for non-linear dynamic time-history analysis are not popular among the professional engineers as they are not only difficult to access but also complex and time-consuming to use. In addition, commercial computer programs for structural analysis and design that are acceptable to practicing engineers do not generally integrate advanced hysteretic models which can accurately simulate the hysteresis behavior of structural elements with a realistic representation of strength degradation, stiffness deterioration, energy dissipation and ‘pinching’ under cyclic load reversals in the inelastic range of behavior. In this scenario, push-over or non-linear static analysis methods have gained significant popularity, as they can be employed to assess the seismic performance of building structures while avoiding the complexities and difficulties associated with non-linear dynamic time-history analysis. “Push-over” or non-linear static analysis offers a practical and efficient alternative to non-linear dynamic time-history analysis for rationally evaluating the seismic demands. The present paper is based on the analytical investigation of the effect of distribution of masonry infill panels over the elevation of planar masonry infilled reinforced concrete [R/C] frames on the seismic demands using the capacity spectrum procedures implementing nonlinear static analysis [pushover analysis] in conjunction with the response spectrum concept. An important objective of the present study is to numerically evaluate the adequacy of the capacity spectrum method using pushover analysis for performance based design of masonry infilled R/C frames for near-field earthquake ground motions.
    The Effect of Randomly Distributed Polypropylene Fibers Borogypsum Fly Ash and Cement on Freezing-Thawing Durability of a Fine-Grained Soil
    A number of studies have been conducted recently to investigate the influence of randomly oriented fibers on some engineering properties of cohesive and cohesionless soils. However, few studies have been carried out on freezing-thawing behavior of fine-grained soils modified with discrete fiber inclusions and additive materials. This experimental study was performed to investigate the effect of randomly distributed polypropylene fibers (PP) and some additive materials [e.g.., borogypsum (BG), fly ash (FA) and cement (C)] on freezing-thawing durability (mass losses) of a fine-grained soil for 6, 12, and 18 cycles. The Taguchi method was applied to the experiments and a standard L9 orthogonal array (OA) with four factors and three levels were chosen. A series of freezing-thawing tests were conducted on each specimen. 0-20% BG, 0-20% FA, 0- 0.25% PP and 0-3% of C by total dry weight of mixture were used in the preparation of specimens. Experimental results showed that the most effective materials for the freezing-thawing durability (mass losses) of the samples were borogypsum and fly ash. The values of mass losses for 6, 12 and 18 cycles in optimum conditions were 16.1%, 5.1% and 3.6%, respectively.
    Application of Artificial Neural Network in the Investigation of Bearing Defects
    Maintenance and design engineers have great concern for the functioning of rotating machineries due to the vibration phenomenon. Improper functioning in rotating machinery originates from the damage to rolling element bearings. The status of rolling element bearings require advanced technologies to monitor their health status efficiently and effectively. Avoiding vibration during machine running conditions is a complicated process. Vibration simulation should be carried out using suitable sensors/ transducers to recognize the level of damage on bearing during machine operating conditions. Various issues arising in rotating systems are interlinked with bearing faults. This paper presents an approach for fault diagnosis of bearings using neural networks and time/frequencydomain vibration analysis.
    The Influence of Architectural-Planning Structure of Cities on Their Sustainable Development

    Existing indicators for sustainable urban development do not identify the features of cities’ planning structures and their architecture. Iranian city has special relevance problem of assessing the conformity of their planning and development of the concept of sustainable development. Based on theoretical sources, the author concludes that, despite the existence of common indicators for sustainable development of settlements, specialized evaluation criteria city structure planning has not been developed. He is trying to fill this gap and put forward a system of indicators characterizing the level of development of the architectural-planning structure of the city. The proposed system of indicators is designed based on technical and economic urban standard indicators from different countries. Alternative designing systems and requirements of modern rating systems like LEED-ND comprise a criterion for evaluation of urban structures in accordance with principles of "Green" building and New Urbanism. Urban development trends are close in spirit of sustainable development and developed under its influence. The study allowed concluding that a system of indicators to identify the relevant architectural-planning structure of the city, requirements of sustainable development, should be adapted to the conditions of each country, particularly in Iran. The article attempts typology proposed indicators, which are presented in tabular form and are divided into two types: planning and spatial. This article discusses the known indicators of sustainable development and proposed specific system of indicators characterizing the level of development of architectural-planning structure of the city. This article examines indicators for evaluating level of city' planning structure development. The proposed system of indicators is derived from the urban planning standards and rating systems such as LEED-ND, BREEAM Community and CASBEE-UD.

    Critical Analysis of Parking Situation of GEC Circle of Chittagong City, Bangladesh

    Chittagong is the Commercial Capital of Bangladesh. The study area at GEC in Chittagong is one of the most commercial activity centers of Chittagong. This paper first analyzes the parking demand of the commercial centers, based on the parking survey. Further, it analyzes the relationship between the parking demand of the commercial buildings and the public transport accessibility. The conclusion is that the parking demand rate of the shopping centre and supermarkets decreases with the increasing of the public transport accessibility. This paper also provides the parking demand rate under the different levels of the public transport accessibility and the parking demand model with the accessibility. The conclusions are valuable for the researches on the parking demand and the making of the parking index for the commercial buildings.

    Fracture Mechanics Modeling of a Shear-Cracked RC Beams Shear-Strengthened with FRP Sheets

    So far, the conventional experimental and theoretical analysis in fracture mechanics have been applied to study concrete flexural- cracked beams, which are strengthened using fiber reinforced polymer (FRP) composite sheets. However, there is still little knowledge about the shear capacity of a side face FRP- strengthened shear-cracked beam. A numerical analysis is herein presented to model the fracture mechanics of a four-point RC beam, with two inclined initial notch on the supports, which is strengthened with side face FRP sheets. In the present study, the shear crack is forced to conduct by using an initial notch in supports. The ABAQUS software is used to model crack propagation by conventional cohesive elements. It is observed that the FRP sheets play important roles in preventing the propagation of shear cracks.

    Recycling Construction Waste Materials to Reduce the Environmental Pollutants

    There have recently been many studies and investments in developed and developing countries regarding the possibility of recycling construction waste, which are still ongoing. Since the term 'construction waste' covers a vast spectrum of materials in constructing buildings, roads and etc., many investigations are required to measure their technical performance in use as well as their time and place of use. Concrete is among the major and fundamental materials used in current construction industry. Along with the rise of population in developing countries, it is desperately required to meet the people's primary need in construction industry and on the other hand, dispose existing wastes for reducing the amount of environmental pollutants. Restrictions of natural resources and environmental pollution are the most important problems encountered by civil engineers. Reusing construction waste is an important and economic approach that not only assists the preservation of environment but also, provides us with primary raw materials. In line with consistent municipal development in disposal and reuse of construction waste, several approaches including, management of construction waste and materials, materials recycling and innovation and new inventions in materials have been predicted. This article has accordingly attempted to study the activities related to recycling of construction wastes and then, stated the economic, quantitative, qualitative and environmental results obtained.