This paper addresses the problem of evaluation of shear strength of masonry walls. Shear mechanisms, characterized by the formation of diagonal cracks, prevail in the case where the un-reinforced masonry (URM) walls are subjected to in-plane lateral loads. In-plane behavior of masonry panels has been studied under monotonic diagonal-compression and shear-compression loading in quasi-static test facility. The results of a series of laboratory and in-situ tests are analyzed to show that in the case of the diagonal compression test the results are not in agreement with the resistance of masonry walls evaluated trough the shear-compression test. A presentation is also given of the results of a F.E. investigation for shear strength evaluation of masonry walls. F.E. modeling non- linear procedure was used for the representation of masonry panels. The numerical simulations are compared with experimental results. The model has been used for the simulation of diagonal compression and shear-compression tests on masonry panels.
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