The mechanical performance of traditional adobe masonry components: An experimental-analytical characterization of soil bricks and mud mortar

Tiziano Li Piani, Dennis Krabbenborg, Jaap Weerheijm, Lambertus Koene, Lambertus J. Sluijs

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Adobe is an ancient building technology made of sun dried bricks joined together by mud mortar. This paper deals with the physical and mechanical characterization of three different typologies of adobe bricks and one typology of mud mortar produced in Europe. They differed in terms of internal soil element proportions and amount of organic content. Physical tests consisted of granulometry, moisture content and density tests. The mechanical characterization consisted of uniaxial compressive tests and three point bending tests. Tests were performed according to modern material standards. The main mechanical properties both in tension and compression were determined at different curing conditions. The outcome provided in this study offers a general overview on the assessment of the mechanical performance of adobe in relation to the properties and interactions of its soil constituents. In fact, the comparison between components with the same soil mineralogical family and production process made it possible to assess both at a qualitative and quantitative level the effect of the physical properties of the mixture (such as fiber and clay percentages or moisture content) on the mechanical parameters of the resulting bricks and mortar. This paper proposes new predictive formulations of the most relevant material parameters in strength and deformation, such as compressive strength, deformation at peak stress and ultimate displacement for both adobe bricks and mortar. They quantify the influence that water content, clay percentage and fiber reinforcement produce on the mechanical performance of the tested adobe components. This was made possible by means of multivariate statistical analyses on the mechanical parameters derived from all the tested samples.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)17-44
Number of pages28
JournalJournal of Green Building
Volume13
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2018

Keywords

  • Adobe
  • Brick
  • Characterization
  • Clay
  • Compression
  • Deformation
  • Fiber
  • Flexure
  • Masonry
  • Moisture
  • Mortar
  • Soil
  • Standard
  • Strength

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