Openings are usually required to allow services like plumbing, sewage pipes and electrical wiring to run through beams. This prevents an extra depth of the floor/ceiling, while preserving architectural considerations. The introduction of large opening causes additional tension perpendicular to grain in timber beams. The low tensile strength perpendicular to grain of wood allows crack formation. Crack propagation around the hole considerably decreases the load-carrying capacity of the beam. However, in most cases, crack formation and propagation around the hole can be prevented by the use of an appropriate reinforcement. Screw, glued-in rods, and plywood are alternative options for the reinforcement. Design of the reinforcement requires that the working mechanism of the reinforcement is fully understood and properly addressed. In addition, reinforcement should be designed for actions produced in the section of the beam weakened by the hole. The current paper uses a simple truss model around the opening to calculate the tensile force in the reinforcement. Two simple formulations for design of the reinforcement are derived and compared with numerical and experimental results, showing an overall good correspondence. The proposed truss model can be considered for incorporation in future codes of practice.
This paper describes a series of three full-scale furnace tests on post-tensioned LVL box beams loaded with vertical loads, and presents a proposed fire design method for post-tensioned timber members. The design method is adapted from the calculation methods given in Eurocode 5 and NZS:3603 which includes the effects of changing geometry and several failure mechanisms specific to post-tensioned timber. The design procedures include an estimation of the heating of the tendons within the timber cavities, and relaxation of post-tensioning forces. Additionally, comparisons of the designs and assumptions used in the proposed fire design method and the results of the full-scale furnace tests are made. The experimental investigation and development of a design method have shown several areas which need to be addressed. It is important to calculate shear stresses in the timber section, as shear is much more likely to govern compared to solid timber. The investigation has shown that whilst tensile failures are less likely to govern the fire design of post-tensioned timber members, due to the axial compression of the post-tensioning, tensile stresses must still be calculated due to the changing centroid of the members as the fire progresses. Research has also highlighted the importance of monitoring additional deflections and moments caused by the high level of axial loads.
This paper describes a series of full-scale furnace tests on loaded post tensioned LVL beams. Each beam was designed to exhibit a specific failure mechanism when exposed to the standard ISO834 fire. In addition to the beams a number of steel anchorage protection schemes were also investigated. These included wrapping the ends in kaowool, using intumescent paint, covering the anchorage with fire rated plasterboard and covering the anchorage with timber (LVL). The results of the full-scale tests cover temperature distributions through the timber members during the tests, the temperatures reached within the cavity and those of the tendons suspended within the cavity, the relaxation of the tendons during the test, the failure mechanisms experienced, and a summary of the anchorage protection details and their effectiveness. Recommendations for the design of both post-tensioned timber beams and associated anchorages are also provided.
This paper describes numerical modelling to predict the fire resistance of engineered timber floor systems. The floor systems under investigation are timber composite floors (various timber joist and box floor cross sections), and timber-concrete composite floors. The paper describes 3D numerical modelling of the floor systems using finite element software, carried out as a sequential thermo-mechanical analysis. Experimental testing of these floor assemblies is also being undertaken to calibrate and validate the models, with a number of full scale tests to determine the failure mechanisms for each floor type and assess fire damage to the respective system components. The final outcome of this research will be simplified design methods for calculating the fire resistance of a wide range of engineered timber floor systems.
This paper outlines a series of experimental tests of LVL box beams designed to fail in shear. Some beams utilised post-tensioning systems to increase the flexural strength and decrease deflection. Fire conditions were simulated using either an ISO 834 furnace test or by mechanically reducing the section dimensions on three-sides of the beam to replicate charring. Comparisons with a simplified calculation method for the fire performance of post-tensioned timber box beams are made and discussed. This paper gives special focus to the shear performance of LVL box beams because previous research had identified that the inclusion of post-tensioning may increase the likelihood of shear failure occurring in LVL box beams, especially in fire conditions.