Finite Element Thrust Line Analysis (FETLA) of Axisymmetric Masonry Dome with Meridian Cracks


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Many masonry domes in their lower portion are subjected to hoop tensile forces which mostly lead to vertical cracks appearing along the dome's meridian planes. A close inspection of any such dome reveals these hoop tension cracks. The dome stands as a series of arches with common key stone, with cracks as a matter of non-structural consequences. Different strategies have been considered historically to arrest these cracks. The provision of tension ring mechanism adds to the stability of these domes, and hence many masonry domes are retrofitted with the provision of the tension rings using steel and FRP rings. The challenge in such retrofitting will remain to analyze its effect on stability of these masonry domes, more specifically in absence of reliable mechanical properties of such masonry domes. This paper presents a simplified analysis procedure combining thrust line analysis with the finite element analysis called here as Finite Element Thrust Line Analysis (FETLA). The development of a new element suitable for masonry dome analysis to include the effect of hoop tension cracks is demonstrated. The orthotropic material properties are utilized for penalty approach to allow redistribution of the forces from meridian direction to the hooping rings, with thrust line approaching the extrados or intrados of the dome. The analysis results of FETLA are validated with the previously available results. The analysis method proposed in this paper gives the rational estimates for the failure load without utilizing inelastic properties of the material to model the hoop tension cracks and its propagation.



Edited by:

Prof. Jong Wan Hu and Prof. Sung Whan Kim




M. Varma et al., "Finite Element Thrust Line Analysis (FETLA) of Axisymmetric Masonry Dome with Meridian Cracks", Applied Mechanics and Materials, Vol. 865, pp. 397-402, 2017

Online since:

June 2017




* - Corresponding Author

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