Research Topic

Seismic Vulnerability Assessment and Retrofitting of Building Structures

About this Research Topic

The contribution of the infill walls to the building’s seismic performance can be favorable or not, depending on a series of phenomena, detailing aspects and mechanical properties, such as the relative stiffness and strength between the frames and the masonry walls. For the assessment and retrofitting of infilled Reinforced Concrete (RC) frame structures, the non-linear behavior induced by earthquakes should be considered. Different techniques are available in the literature to simulate the response of infilled frames, from simplified macro-models to refined detailed-models. The international codes still consider the infill panels as “non-structural elements” despite their important role in the RC structures seismic performance. Due to that, a high number of RC structures were improperly designed. Three strategies can be adopted to strengthening the RC structures, namely strengthening the global structure, strengthening of isolated structural members and strengthening of the infill panels. Those strategies can be applied individually or grouped.

The major goal of this Research Topic is to present and discuss the effect of the infill masonry walls in the seismic performance of RC structures around the following areas.
• Their impact on the structure at local or global level.
• The effect of different variables such as the existence of vertical or plan irregularities, consideration of the infill panels’ openings and their combined in-plane and out-of-plane behavior.
• The development of the most advanced methodologies to assess the seismic vulnerability of infilled RC structures. Into this, different modeling strategies can be applied concerning the simulation of infilled RC structures. Accurate modeling strategies and appropriate seismic assessment methodologies are crucial to understand the behavior of existent buildings and to develop adequate retrofit strategies to and reduce the seismic risk.
• Lastly, the definition, testing, and analysis of the effect of strengthening solutions will be presented and compared with the “as-built” situation of the structure.

The scope of this Research Topic is on seismic vulnerability assessment and retrofitting of infilled RC structures. Articles submitted to this Research Topic can cover the recent advances in the numerical modeling to simulate the infilled RC structures seismic behavior, experimental testing of infilled RC structures, strengthening and retrofitting of infilled RC structures and cost-benefit analysis.

Potential topics that fall in scope of the Research Topic include, but are not limited to, the following:
• Advances in numerical simulation of the infill masonry walls;
• Study of the effect of the infill panels’ openings, in-plane, out-of-plane behavior or combined;
• Study of irregular structures;
• Study of short-column effect;
• Methodologies to assess, the seismic vulnerability of infilled RC structures;
• Analytical models to predict the seismic safety of infill models;
• Strengthening and retrofitting of infilled RC frames;
• Cost-benefit analysis.


Keywords: Earthquake Engineering, seismic vulnerability assessment, retrofitting, Numerical modelling, Experimental testing


Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.

The contribution of the infill walls to the building’s seismic performance can be favorable or not, depending on a series of phenomena, detailing aspects and mechanical properties, such as the relative stiffness and strength between the frames and the masonry walls. For the assessment and retrofitting of infilled Reinforced Concrete (RC) frame structures, the non-linear behavior induced by earthquakes should be considered. Different techniques are available in the literature to simulate the response of infilled frames, from simplified macro-models to refined detailed-models. The international codes still consider the infill panels as “non-structural elements” despite their important role in the RC structures seismic performance. Due to that, a high number of RC structures were improperly designed. Three strategies can be adopted to strengthening the RC structures, namely strengthening the global structure, strengthening of isolated structural members and strengthening of the infill panels. Those strategies can be applied individually or grouped.

The major goal of this Research Topic is to present and discuss the effect of the infill masonry walls in the seismic performance of RC structures around the following areas.
• Their impact on the structure at local or global level.
• The effect of different variables such as the existence of vertical or plan irregularities, consideration of the infill panels’ openings and their combined in-plane and out-of-plane behavior.
• The development of the most advanced methodologies to assess the seismic vulnerability of infilled RC structures. Into this, different modeling strategies can be applied concerning the simulation of infilled RC structures. Accurate modeling strategies and appropriate seismic assessment methodologies are crucial to understand the behavior of existent buildings and to develop adequate retrofit strategies to and reduce the seismic risk.
• Lastly, the definition, testing, and analysis of the effect of strengthening solutions will be presented and compared with the “as-built” situation of the structure.

The scope of this Research Topic is on seismic vulnerability assessment and retrofitting of infilled RC structures. Articles submitted to this Research Topic can cover the recent advances in the numerical modeling to simulate the infilled RC structures seismic behavior, experimental testing of infilled RC structures, strengthening and retrofitting of infilled RC structures and cost-benefit analysis.

Potential topics that fall in scope of the Research Topic include, but are not limited to, the following:
• Advances in numerical simulation of the infill masonry walls;
• Study of the effect of the infill panels’ openings, in-plane, out-of-plane behavior or combined;
• Study of irregular structures;
• Study of short-column effect;
• Methodologies to assess, the seismic vulnerability of infilled RC structures;
• Analytical models to predict the seismic safety of infill models;
• Strengthening and retrofitting of infilled RC frames;
• Cost-benefit analysis.


Keywords: Earthquake Engineering, seismic vulnerability assessment, retrofitting, Numerical modelling, Experimental testing


Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.

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Submission Deadlines

01 August 2020 Manuscript

Participating Journals

Manuscripts can be submitted to this Research Topic via the following journals:

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Topic Editors

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Submission Deadlines

01 August 2020 Manuscript

Participating Journals

Manuscripts can be submitted to this Research Topic via the following journals:

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