Developed in the mid-1990s in Austria and Germany, Cross Laminated Timber (CLT) is an innovative wood product known for its strength in both orthogonal directions, and its dimensional stability, making it a sustainable alternative to concrete slabs. CLT is created through the cross-lamination process, which glues together odd number of layers of wood planks placed in orthogonally alternating directions. With the growing interest in the application of CLT in North America, numerous studies has been conducted to characterize the acoustical properties of CLT panels. However, most of them focused on the sound-transmission aspect of CLT, very few on the sound absorption. This thesis will explore the sound-absorption characteristics of CLT, the effect on overall room-acoustical conditions, the utilization of resonant sound-absorbing layers on CLT to make it more sound-absorptive, and proposed solutions to improve this performance aspect. To demonstrate the low sound absorption and poor acoustical conditions in rooms with exposed and untreated CLT panels, several in-situ reverberation-time (RT) measurements were conducted in multiple buildings in British Columbia. Average sound-absorption coefficients and estimated Speech Intelligibility Indices (SII) were calculated as baseline performance measures for this study. Based on the results from five different buildings, involving 8 rooms configurations, average sound-absorption coefficients for exposed CLT panels are approximately between 0.02 to 0.13, resulting in barely acceptable conditions for verbal communication. To optimize the sound-absorption characteristics of prototype CLT panels, a transfer-matrix model has been developed to predict the performance of multi-layered CLT panels. This theoretical model was then validated by using three different sound-absorption measurement methods (impedance tube, spherical decoupling, and reverberation chamber) for multiple HR array configurations. After identifying the important parameters of an HR system and their effects on performance, a final prototype configuration with Helmholtz Resonator Array was then created with the goal of improving the room- acoustical performance of CLT, as well as responding to input from the CLT manufacturers and experts. Both the theoretical and experimental results confirmed that the proposed solution has the required sound-absorption performance and achieves all research objectives.
Cross-Laminated Timber (CLT) is gaining momentum as a competitor to steel and concrete in the construction industry. However, with CLT being relatively new to North America, it is being held back from realizing its full potential by a lack of research in various areas, such as vibration serviceability. This has resulted in vague design guidelines, leading to either overly conservative designs, hurting profit margins, or leading to overly lenient designs, resulting in occupancy discomfort. Eliminating these design inefficiencies is paramount to expanding the use of CLT and creating a more sustainable construction industry.
This thesis focuses on the effect of a heavy topping, in this case 2" of concrete over a layer of rigid insulation, on a CLT floor. To this end, modal analysis was performed on two spans of three CLT panels in the Andy Quattlebaum Outdoor Education Center at Clemson University. By performing a series of instrumented heel-drop tests with a roving grid of accelerometers, the natural frequencies, mode shapes, frequency response functions, and damping coefficients were determined. By comparing the results to several different numerical models, the most appropriate model was selected for use in future design. In addition, a walking excitation test was performed to calculate the root mean square acceleration of the floor for comparison to current design standards.
This study found that, with a layer of rigid insulation separating the topping and the panel, the system behaved predictably like a non-composite system. The resultant mode shapes also verified that the boundary conditions behaved very close to “hinged” and showed that the combination of the surface splines and the continuous topping provide significant transverse continuity in terms of response to vibrations. Lastly, the results of the walking excitation test showed that, with some further study, the current design standards for steel vibration serviceability can be applied to great effect to CLT systems.
The report aims to investigate norms, standards, guidelines and experience within the industry for how to design CLT (cross-laminated timber) regarding vibrations induced from humans. The following is being researched, ISO137, KL-trähandboken, Eurocode 5 and a new unpublished working draft of Eurocode 5 final working draft, Canadian CLT handbook and Cross-laminated timber structural design according to Eurocode from Austria.The conclusion is that the literature for CLT is non-existent in the current Eurocode 5 which only addresses timber floors with joists, however the new Eurocode draft suggests an update to include CLT which is similar to the norm CLT from Austria.The report contains a calculation part in which an analysis is conducted for a real project with calculations based on Eurocode 5 and the Eurocode 5 final working draft, the design tool Calculatis and FEM program RFEM. The calculations are compiled and evaluated.The calculation results show differences between the different standards. The natural frequencies are typically the same. The biggest difference is between the accelerations which is in direct relation to the modal mass, and the modal mass differs a lot between the calculations. It is understandable how Eurocode 5 final draft and RFEM calculate the modal mass, but not so for Calculatis as it doesn’t show any calculations in the technical documentation.There is a difference of the modal mass between Eurocode 5 final draft and RFEM, likely because EK5 calculate the modal mass for a rectangular floor simply supported at two or four sides. Whereas the RFEM model is not strictly rectangular nor is it simply supported everywhere, instead there are beams in some places. This suggests that caution should be regarded in calculations where floor structures have been simplified.
This research focuses on the dynamic behaviour of long span LCC flooring systems. Experimental testing and finite element modelling was used to determine the dynamic behaviour, with particular regard to the natural frequency, fn and mode shape of an LCC floor.
Both the experimental results and the finite element analyses agreed and showed that increased stiffness increased the natural frequency of the floor, and the boundary conditions influenced the dynamic behaviour of the LCC floor. Providing more restraint increased the stiffness of the floor system. The connectors' stiffness did not influence the dynamic performance of the floor.
The research showed that a 8 m LCC long span floor can be constructed using LVL joists of between 300 mm to 400 mm depth with a concrete thickness of 65 mm for the longer spans, and joists of between 150 mm to 240 mm depth in conjunction with a concrete topping thickness of 100 mm for the shorter spans.
This study investigated the vibration serviceability of timber structures with dowel-type connections. It addressed the use of such connections in cutting-edge timber structures such as multi-storey buildings and long-span bridges, in which the light weight and flexibility of the structure make it possible that vibration induced by dynamic forces such as wind or footfall may cause discomfort to occupants or users of the structure, or otherwise impair its intended use. The nature of the oscillating force imposed on connections by this form of vibration was defined based on literature review and the use of established mathematical models. This allowed the appropriate cyclic load to be applied in experimental work on the most basic component of a dowel-type connection: a steel dowel embedding into a block of timber. A model for the stiffness of the timber in embedment under this cyclic load was developed based on an elastic stress function, which could then be used as the basis of a model for a complete connector. Nonlinear and time-dependent behaviour was also observed in embedment, and a simple rheological model incorporating elastic, viscoelastic and plastic elements was fitted to the measured response to cyclic load. Observations of the embedment response of the timber were then used to explain features of the behaviour of complete single- and multiple-dowel connections under cyclic load representative of in-service vibration. Complete portal frames and cantilever beams were tested under cyclic load, and a design method was derived for predicting the stiffness of such structures, using analytical equations based on the model for embedment behaviour. In each cyclic load test the energy dissipation in the specimen, which contributes to the damping in a complete structure, was measured. The analytical model was used to predict frictional energy dissipation in embedment, which was shown to make a significant contribution to damping in single-dowel connections. Based on the experimental results and analysis, several defining aspects of the dynamic response of the complete structures, such as a reduction of natural frequency with increased amplitude of applied load, were related to the observed and modelled embedment behaviour of the connections.
The current outbreak of Mountain Pine Beetle (MPB) in the province of British Columbia (B.C.) is the most extensive disturbance event occurring in North American forests in recorded history. The concept of converting the beetle killed wood into engineered wood products by defect removal and reconstitution is employed to maximize value recovery from the material. Cross Laminated Timber (CLT), which is produced in modular form and can be utilized as part of a structural system for floor, wall or roof elements, is considered as an excellent application of the concept. CLT originates from Europe. Such products have been developed as a proprietary product by individual companies aimed at servicing specific markets. There is a need to investigate different ways of making CLT and to define its structural performance suitable for North America. The main focus of this study is to investigate the structural performance of box based CLT system used in floor applications. Comprehensive three dimensional finite element models, which can be used to analyze the mechanical and vibration behavior of the plate and box type structures, were developed. Four prototype box elements, each having five replicates, were designed and manufactured locally. Third point bending tests were conducted on the specimens in the Timber Engineering and Applied Mechanics (TEAM) Laboratory at the University of British Columbia. The numerical analysis agreed well with experimental data in terms of vertical deflection and bending stiffness. Vibration, which is critical to floor serviceability, was also studied. Three types of excitation were applied to measure the fundamental frequency of the twenty specimens. Finite element analysis provided good predictions of fundamental frequency values comparing to the experimental results. A local built demonstration building, L41home, was presented and analyzed as an example using the tools developed in this study for CLT applications. As a pioneer research of CLT materials in North America, this work has contributed to the understanding of the structural performance of floor systems using CLT panels for the commercial and residential applications.
Timber-Concrete Composite (TCC) systems are comprised of a timber element connected to a concrete slab through a mechanical shear connection. When TCC are used as flexural elements, the concrete and timber are located in compression and tension zones, respectively. A large number of precedents for T-beam configurations exist; however, the growing availability of flat plate engineered wood products (EWPs) in North America in combination with a concrete topping has offered designers and engineers greater versatility in terms of architectural expression and structural and building physics performance. The focus of this investigation was to experimentally determine the properties for a range of proprietary, open source, and novel TCC systems in several Canadian EWPs. Strength and stiffness properties were determined for 45 different TCC configurations based on over 300 small-scale shear tests. Nine connector configurations were selected for implementation in full-scale bending and vibration tests. Eighteen floor panels were tested for elastic stiffness under a quasi-static loading protocol and measurements of the dynamic properties were obtained prior to loading to failure. The tests confirmed that both hand calculations according to the -method and more detailed FEM models can predict the basic stiffness and dynamic properties of TCC floors within a reasonable degree of accuracy; floor capacities were more difficult to predict, however, failure did usually not occur until loading reached 10 times serviceability requirements. The research demonstrated that all selected connector configurations produced efficient timber-concrete-composite systems.
The application of cross-laminated timber (CLT) as floor panels is limited by excessive deflection and vibration. A composite system combining CLT and ultra high-performance fibre-reinforced concrete (UHPFRC) was developed to extend span limits. Push-off tests were conducted on different connectors, and a glued-in rod connector was chosen and further refined for the proposed system. Static bending tests and free vibration tests were conducted on bare CLT panels and two composite specimens. By comparing the results, it is concluded that the proposed system considerably extend the span limits of CLT panels.
Glued laminated timber (glulam) is manufactured by gluing and stacking timber lamellas,
which are sawn and finger-jointed parallel to the wood grain direction. This results in a
sustainable and competitive construction material in terms of dimensional versatility and
load-carrying capacity. With the proliferation of glued timber constructions, there is an
increasing concern about safety problems related to adhesive bonding. Delaminations are
caused by manufacturing errors and in service climate variations simultaneously combined
with long-sustained loads (snow, wind and gravel filling on flat roofs). Several recent
building collapses were related to bonding failure, which should be prevented in the future
with a timely defect detection. As an outlook, the feasibility of air-coupled ultrasound tomography was demonstrated with numerical tests and preliminary experiments on glulam. The FDTD wave propagation model was excited by the difference of the time-reversed sound fields transmitted through a test and a reference (defect-free) glulam cross-section. Both datasets were obtained with the same SLT setup. Wave convergences then provided a map of bonding defects along the height and width of the inspected glulam cross-sections. Further
research is envisaged in this direction