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Mechanical behavior of rammed earth walls under Pushover tests

Abstract : Determining the mechanical behavior of rammed earth walls is a highly important feature giving that there is a renewed interest in the use of the natural material in building construction. On one hand, it contributes to finding suitable and appropriate ways for the conservation and restoration of these building and on another hand, it draws new recommendations for the conception of new rammed earth structures with respect to new building regulations (earthquake building guideline, new thermal regulation).In this context, this thesis investigates the behavior of rammed earth walls subjected to lateral loading. Four unstabilized rammed earth walls were tested under a combination of vertical and monotonic pushover tests up to failure. The shear behavior of these walls is studied along with the failure modes by means of digital image correlation. Results showed that the response of the rammed earth is characterized by significant non-linear behavior with a remarkable ductility. In general, the walls experienced a shear failure due to the failure of diagonal struts. Cracks at the interface between the bottom layers were also observed.The performance of these walls was assessed based on the pushover methodology. The experimental work was completed with the determination of the mechanical characteristics of rammed earth in compression and an investigation of the shear components: cohesion and friction angle of the rammed earth through shear box tests on a different scale. Finally, the relevance of these parameters was tested by performing a numerical model that aims to simulate the experimental tests done on the scale of the walls.
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Ranime El Nabouch. Mechanical behavior of rammed earth walls under Pushover tests. Civil Engineering. Université Grenoble Alpes, 2017. English. ⟨NNT : 2017GREAA014⟩. ⟨tel-01707009⟩

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