The Structural Engineer > Archive > Volume 68 (1990) > Issues > Issue 17 > Structural Wall Design - a Proposal for Revision
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Structural Wall Design - a Proposal for Revision

Current methods for the design of RC walls are based on theoretical concepts and empirical expressions which do not accord with the structural behaviour of the walls in the ultimate limit state. In the present paper, recent analytical and experimental studies are used to offer supporting evidence for a constructive review of axial-flexural and shear design procedures of current Codes for RC walls. The conservative nature of the Code predicted axial-flexural strength is attributed to the underestimation of the considerable effect the small stresses may have on the loadcarrying capacity and deformational response of concrete in critical regions of a wall. Simple remedies are proposed to accurately assess the wall flexural capacity. Furthermore the review reveals that not only is the compressive zone the most significant contributor to wall resistance but also that the wall does not have to behave like a truss in order to sustain shear forces after inclined cracking has occurred. Design procedures based on the use of a physical model have been suggested to prevent the occurrence of types of failure other than flexural. The proposed revisions have been shown to result in a more economical design solution without compromising safety. I.D. Lefas