Non-load-bearing enclosure walls are a common construction method in the earthquake zones in Southern Europe. Solid monolithic clay brick masonry offers sound credentials for this application. The Working Group on Masonry Bricks is therefore taking part in a research project funded by the European Commission to determine basic properties for this masonry and their realization in construction practice. The tests on masonry built with modern thermally insulating clay blocks made in Germany were conducted at the University of Kassel in collaboration with SDA Engineering GmbH, Herzogenrath. Following determination of the flexural strength for the load directions parallel and perpendicular to the horizontal joint, large-scale tests were performed on reinforced concrete frames infilled with thermal insulation clay blocks. Very positive results could be obtained when the masonry was decoupled from the reinforced concrete frame by means of appropriate elastomer supports.
Dr.-Ing. Udo Meyer, Working Group for Masonry Bricks Regd, Bonn