Seismic performance of rammed earth town halls reinforced with confinement wooden elements

D. Ruiz, M. Silva, L. Cerón, C. López


There are few studies on the behavior of historic structures of adobe and rammed earth in Latin America, which has contributed to the deterioration of these buildings, which are part of our architectural and cultural heritage. Colombia has 90% of its heritage buildings made of earth and most of them are located in high and intermediate seismic risk zones. The town halls of the colonial era (made of adobe or rammed earth) are part of this Colombian architectural heritage and still kept 11 of these houses in the Department of Cundinamarca. This article presents the results of a study conducted by research groups GRIME and Estructuras & Construcción, where the objective was to study a method of rehabilitation of town halls of rammed earth through confinement wooden elements. The research is based on shake table tests on scale models (1:20), with and without reinforcement with confinement wooden elements. The results suggest that the reinforced model had less seismic displacements (69% less than the model without reinforcement) and that the wooden confinement elements diminishes the cracking of the rammed earth walls.


Structural reinforcement, wooden elements, rammed earth, adobe, laboratory tests, town halls, shake table tests



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