New Zealand Society for Earthquake Engineering Conference
April 26-28, 2013, Wellington, New Zealand
This paper describes options for seismic design of pre-fabricated timber core-wall
systems, used as stairwells and lift shafts for lateral load resistance in multi-storey timber
buildings. The use of Cross-Laminated Timber (CLT) panels for multi-storey timber buildings is
gaining popularity throughout the world, especially for residential construction. This
paper describes the possible use of CLT core-walls for seismic resistance in open-plan
commercial office buildings in New Zealand. Previous experimental testing at the
University of Canterbury has been done on the in-plane behaviour of single and coupled
Pres-Lam post-tensioned timber walls. However there has been very little research done
on the behaviour of timber walls that are orthogonal to each other and no research into
CLT walls in the post-tensioned Pres-Lam system. This paper describes the proposed test regime and design detailing of two half-scale twostorey CLT stairwells to be tested under a bi-directional quasi-static loading. The test specimens will include a half-flight stair case with landings within the stairwell. The “High seismic option” consists of post-tensioned CLT walls coupled with energy dissipating U-shaped Flexural Plates (UFP) attached between wall panels and square hollow section steel columns at the corner junctions. An alternative “Low seismic option” uses the same post-tensioned CLT panels, with no corner columns or UFPs. The panels will be connected by screws to provide a semi-rigid connection, allowing relative
movement between the panels producing some level of energy dissipation.
This thesis discusses the results of experimental tests on two post-tensioned timber core-walls, tested under bi-directional quasi-static seismic loading. The half-scale two-storey test specimens included a stair with half-flight landings. Multi-storey timber structures are becoming increasingly desirable for architects and building owners due to their aesthetic and environmental benefits. In addition, there is increasing public pressure to have low damage structural systems with minimal business interruption after a moderate to severe seismic event. Timber has been used extensively for low-rise residential structures in the past, but has been utilised much less for multi-storey structures, traditionally limited to residential type building layouts which use light timber framing and include many walls to form a lateral load resisting system. This is undesirable for multi-storey commercial buildings which need large open spaces providing building owners with versatility in their desired floor plan. The use of Cross-Laminated Timber (CLT) panels for multi-storey timber buildings is gaining popularity throughout the world, especially for residential construction. Previous experimental testing has been done on the in-plane behaviour of single and coupled post-tensioned timber walls at the University of Canterbury and elsewhere. However, there has been very little research done on the 3D behaviour of timber walls that are orthogonal to each other and no research to date into post-tensioned CLT walls. The “high seismic option” consisted of full height post-tensioned CLT walls coupled with energy dissipating U-shaped Flexural Plates (UFPs) attached at the vertical joints between coupled wall panels and between wall panels and the steel corner columns. An alternative “low seismic option” consisted of post-tensioned CLT panels connected by screws, to provide a semi-rigid connection, allowing relative movement between the panels, producing some level of frictional energy dissipation.