New Zealand Society for Earthquake Engineering Conference
March 21-23, 2014, Auckland, New Zealand
Rocking timber walls provide an excellent lateral load resisting system for structures using the low damage seismic design philosophy. Special attention has to be given to the wall-to-floor connections, because diaphragm forces have to be properly transferred while accommodating displacement incompatibilities, which include the relative rotation and the uplift of the wall with respect to the floor.
This paper presents the experimental behaviour of several different wall-to-floor connections in Pres-Lam post-tensioned timber structures subjected to horizontal seismic loading. A 2/3 scale post-tensioned timber wall was laterally loaded through collector beams using different connection details. Bolted connections take advantage of the flexibility of the fasteners and lead to some bending of the collector beam, whereas pins and slotted steel plates reduce the wall-tofloor interaction, as they allow for rotation and some uplift. No significant damage to the floors was observed in any of the tests.
The experimental results showed that floor damage can generally be prevented up to high levels of drift by the flexibility of well-designed connections and the flexibility of the collector beams. In the case of very stiff floors or very stiff collector beams, a more sophisticated connection such as sliding steel elements with a vertical slot should be considered.