Role of structural and non structural elements on the seismic performances of RC existing buildings - B4

Current seismic codes (e.g. the NTC08 Italian code) adopt a performance-based approach for both design of new buildings and assessment of existing ones. Different limit states are considered to verify structural members as well as non structural elements and facilities, these latter frequently neglected in the practice. However, recent earthquakes (e.g. L’Aquila 2009) underlined the key role of non structural elements on the global performances of affected buildings. In fact, due to the extensive damage suffered by infills, partitions and ceilings, many private and public buildings were unusable. Further, the outward collapse of infill panels determined high risk conditions to life safety. Therefore, an integrated approach taking into account all components of the building system is needed in both design of new buildings and assessment of existing ones. In this paper the seismic performances of existing buildings involving both structural and non structural elements (infills), as well as their mutual interaction, are evaluated. To this purpose, a new model able to take into account the effects due to prior in-plane damage on out-of-plane capacity of infills is proposed. Some application examples to mid-rise structural types representative of real RC existing buildings are carried out aimed at specifically analysing the influence of infills on building performances.

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