Nonlinear Numerical Study on AAC Masonry Walls Strengthened with CFRP under In-Plane Monotonic Loading
Autoclaved Aerated Concrete (AAC) blocks are considered one of the eco-friendly and authorized green building materials used in both load-bearing and non-load-bearing masonry walls. However, these walls are used as load-bearing in low seismicity areas because of their low structural capacity to resist seismic loads. This study aims at using carbon fiber reinforced polymer (CFRP) sheets to improve the behavior of AAC masonry walls in resisting combined vertical and lateral loads. At this aim, 3D finite element models were prepared to simulate AAC masonry walls consisting of a width of 1830 mm, a height of 2100 mm, and a thickness of 150 mm and retrofitted with different thicknesses of CFRP sheets in a sandwich-like structure. The models were created and analyzed using ANSYS software. The results of the models were verified by comparing them with those obtained from previous studies. Then, an extensive parametric study was carried out to study the effect of changing mortar compressive strength, CFRP thickness, and the number and position of CFRP sheets on the performance of the upgraded AAC masonry walls. The results of this study showed that the suggested system improves the stiffness and load-carrying capacity of AAC masonry walls. Increasing the CFRP sheets' thickness does not enhance AAC walls' behavior while increasing the mortar's compressive strength enhances the behavior of the wall.