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Buildings, Volume 13, Issue 3 (March 2023) – 263 articles

Cover Story (view full-size image): An expected increase in the use of air conditioning will significantly increase electricity demand and come at a cost to the environment. Implementing passive cooling strategies and personal environmental control systems (PECSs) could help to address this issue. Despite the benefits of PECSs in improving occupant comfort and saving energy, their implementation is still limited. The lack of a comprehensive assessment of the economic viability of PECS motivates their investigation. Through building performance simulation, we compare the economic viability of personal fans with alternative cooling solutions for different climatic scenarios. The investigation of thermal comfort and productivity translated into cost, including monitoring data from an existing building, is the novelty of this paper. View this paper
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18 pages, 7976 KiB  
Article
Structural Assessment and Strengthening of a Historic Masonry Orthodox Church
by Ionuț Alexandru Spiridon, Dragoș Ungureanu, Nicolae Țăranu, Cătălin Onuțu, Dorina Nicolina Isopescu and Adrian Alexandru Șerbănoiu
Buildings 2023, 13(3), 835; https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings13030835 - 22 Mar 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1430
Abstract
This study provides insight into the structural assessment, diagnosis, and strengthening of the medieval church of Tazlău Monastery in Piatra Neamț, Romania. The first part of the paper briefly presents the wider context of strengthening and preserving heritage churches and monastic buildings and [...] Read more.
This study provides insight into the structural assessment, diagnosis, and strengthening of the medieval church of Tazlău Monastery in Piatra Neamț, Romania. The first part of the paper briefly presents the wider context of strengthening and preserving heritage churches and monastic buildings and describes the architectural setting and the structural features of the traditional Romanian Orthodox churches. The second part of the paper is a case study related to the rehabilitation of a medieval heritage church, which is the paramount building of a larger monastic complex. Erected in 1496, the church of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary closely follows the medieval traditional Orthodox patterns from both architectural and structural points of view. Structural assessment and diagnosis revealed that degradations were induced and developed throughout the life of the structure due to approximately 24 earthquakes (estimated at over 6.0 magnitude) having endangered the structural safety of the building and the mural iconography. After the structural diagnosis, a combined and complex method of strengthening consisting of both grouting and introducing steel rods in vertically drilled galleries along the entire height of the walls was selected. The main advantage of applying this combined strengthening strategy was a remarkable enhancement of the structural seismic performance of the church building. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Building Conservation)
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24 pages, 1927 KiB  
Article
Measuring Comprehensive Production Efficiency of the Chinese Construction Industry: A Bootstrap-DEA-Malmquist Approach
by Aobo Yue and Xupeng Yin
Buildings 2023, 13(3), 834; https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings13030834 - 22 Mar 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1429
Abstract
Production efficiency is a critical research topic in the field of construction economics and management. It reflects the developmental potential and competitiveness of the economy or an economic system. An objective and reasonable assessment framework of the production efficiency in the construction industry [...] Read more.
Production efficiency is a critical research topic in the field of construction economics and management. It reflects the developmental potential and competitiveness of the economy or an economic system. An objective and reasonable assessment framework of the production efficiency in the construction industry is essential to promote the industry’s high-quality development. This study aims to propose a scientific and holistic framework to examine the production efficiency in the construction industry and to investigate evolution patterns from a macroeconomic perspective. Input and output indicators were identified through the value-added and the fuzzy Delphi methods. In addition, the production efficiency in the construction industry was examined via the bootstrap-DEA and Malmquist exponential decomposition models. A case study in China was conducted at the end of this research. The panel data of 31 provinces from 2010 to 2020 were applied in the case study. The results reveal the following: (1) The bootstrap-DEA model results show that the trends of production efficiency before and after rectification are similar, but the difference is largest at the peak. Moreover, the production efficiency value after correction is evidently lower than that which is obtained by the traditional DEA model. (2) The Malmquist index decomposition results show that the change trend of technical efficiency in the construction industry is contrary to that of the scale efficiency. In addition, the improvement of scale efficiency cannot bring a melioration of management efficiency or the accumulation of production experience. (3) There is no direct correlation between production efficiency and economic development. High-value areas and median areas are contiguous, and they are mainly distributed in the central and eastern provinces. The findings accurately reflect construction industry productivity, providing practical data for developing policy recommendations for bridging regional construction development gaps. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Architecture and Construction Infrastructure)
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33 pages, 7387 KiB  
Article
A French Residential Retrofit toward Achieving Net-Zero Energy Target in a Mediterranean Climate
by Najeeba Kutty, Dua Barakat and Maatouk Khoukhi
Buildings 2023, 13(3), 833; https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings13030833 - 22 Mar 2023
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1802
Abstract
Cities are paying more attention to building energy use and carbon footprint for attaining sustainability. Within this building sector, there is a growing attention toward development and adoption of energy efficient retrofit strategies. Plagued by the lack of efforts in achieving comprehensive energy [...] Read more.
Cities are paying more attention to building energy use and carbon footprint for attaining sustainability. Within this building sector, there is a growing attention toward development and adoption of energy efficient retrofit strategies. Plagued by the lack of efforts in achieving comprehensive energy efficient retrofit solution sets (passive, active, and renewable energy systems), the authors acknowledge the concept of NZEB toward achieving energy efficiency by 2050. Toward this end, a numerical energy simulation modeling is carried out to retrofit an existing French “Puccini house” using ‘passive, energy efficient building systems and renewable energy’ strategies toward an NZEB target in the Mediterranean climate of Nice. Using Design builder 7.0, the simulated baseline energy model (Case A) is retrofitted through variations in the proposed energy efficient retrofit measures using two case scenarios (Case B: passive retrofit; Case C: energy-efficient building) to achieve NZEB (Case D). Assessing the performance of energy efficient retrofits using % energy reduction, the implementation of a high-performance building envelope is achieved using a thermally insulated external wall (46.82%), upgraded airtightness (20.39%), thermally insulated pitched roof component (33.03%), and high-performance window type—a glazing system (3.35%) with maximized window-to-wall ratio (5.53%). The maximum energy-saving retrofit solutions provide an ambitious reduction in energy consumption by approximately 90% from the baseline. A deep retrofitting of the French house meets the NZEB targets, as it reduces the baseline energy consumption from 194.37 kWh/m2/year to 23.98 kWh/m2/year using both passive and active strategies. The remaining energy demand is met by the integration of on-site PV panels (EUI= −27.71 kWh/m2/year), which achieve an increase in energy production by 15.5%, while returning energy back to the grid (−3.73 kWh/m2/year). Findings of this study serve as a guideline for retrofitting traditional French single-family residences, while contributing toward the NZEB goal. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Building Energy, Physics, Environment, and Systems)
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15 pages, 4393 KiB  
Article
Computational Simulation of the Correlations in a Port–Hinterland System from a Tourism Spatial Optimization Perspective
by Rui Wang, Dashuai Gao, Huasong Luo, Yong Chen, Hang Liu and Jingjing Chen
Buildings 2023, 13(3), 832; https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings13030832 - 22 Mar 2023
Viewed by 849
Abstract
From the perspective of tourism space optimization, the application of computer technology in creating computational simulations of correlation effects in tourism space systems is a core issue in research related to ports and hinterlands. Using a computer simulation analysis of the gray correlation, [...] Read more.
From the perspective of tourism space optimization, the application of computer technology in creating computational simulations of correlation effects in tourism space systems is a core issue in research related to ports and hinterlands. Using a computer simulation analysis of the gray correlation, taking Mohan port–Yunnan economic hinterland as an example, the relationship between Mohan port and the Yunnan economic hinterland was quantitatively measured based on the indicators of cross-border tourism from 2006 to 2020. The study aimed to identify the driving mechanisms behind the synchronized development of Mohan port–Yunnan economic hinterland. The results are as follows: (1) due to the influence of administrative interventions and the competition of the neighboring ports, the correlation between the Mohan port and the Yunnan hinterland from 2006 to 2020 showed a rising–falling trend; (2) the correlation between the Mohan port and Xishuangbanna prefecture showed an obvious fluctuating trend, and the original port–city development relationship evolved to a competitive status; (3) the degree of spatial correlation of the Mohan port–Yunnan hinterland system evolved in a north–south-central–south direction, with “border zone–central region–northern region” distribution characteristics; (4) the natural conditions of the location, national policies, competition of nearby ports, infrastructure and traffic conditions, and economic strength are the main driving factors affecting the correlation change between Mohan port and the Yunnan hinterland. These findings can help enrich the theoretical research system of buildings economics, and expand the application of computational decision-making support in tourism spatial optimization. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Architectural Design, Urban Science, and Real Estate)
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17 pages, 7853 KiB  
Article
Topology Optimization of Stiffened Steel Plate Shear Wall Based on the Bidirectional Progressive Structural Optimization Method
by Jianian He, Xuhao Li, Shizhe Chen and Huasheng Xian
Buildings 2023, 13(3), 831; https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings13030831 - 22 Mar 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1506
Abstract
Many studies on structural topology optimization of steel plate shear walls have been conducted. However, research on topology optimization using the bidirectional evolutionary structural optimization method is limited. Accordingly, this study optimized the topology of the stiffening effect of steel plate shear walls [...] Read more.
Many studies on structural topology optimization of steel plate shear walls have been conducted. However, research on topology optimization using the bidirectional evolutionary structural optimization method is limited. Accordingly, this study optimized the topology of the stiffening effect of steel plate shear walls (SPSWs) based on this method. A finite element model of the SPSW was established using Abaqus software through the “sandwich” modeling method. An optimization region was expanded into two optimization regions. As the optimization targets, SPSWs with different aspect ratios were selected. Elastoplastic optimization of a single-layer SPSW was performed through the horizontal displacement cyclic loading, and the distribution law of the stiffening effect was obtained. The stiffeners on the SPSW were arranged according to the SPSW-A075 scheme. Monotonic and reciprocating loading simulation tests were performed on the unstiffened SPSW and common transverse and longitudinal stiffeners to analyze their mechanical properties. The results show that the optimized layout of the stiffened SPSW demonstrated better seismic performance and energy dissipation capacity. The buckling bearing capacity increased by 2.17–2.61 times, and the stiffness and initial stiffness improved significantly. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Building Structures)
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12 pages, 1066 KiB  
Article
Identifying Collapsible Soils from Seismic Cone (SCPT): A Qualitative Approach
by Breno Padovezi Rocha, Isabela Augusto Silveira, Roger Augusto Rodrigues, Paulo Cesar Lodi and Heraldo Luiz Giacheti
Buildings 2023, 13(3), 830; https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings13030830 - 22 Mar 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1312
Abstract
Collapsible soils are unsaturated low-density soils that undergo abrupt settlement when flooded without any increase in the in-situ stress level. The first stage of the site characterization is identifying collapsible soils, since these are problematic soils. Seismic cone testing (SCPT) has been increasingly [...] Read more.
Collapsible soils are unsaturated low-density soils that undergo abrupt settlement when flooded without any increase in the in-situ stress level. The first stage of the site characterization is identifying collapsible soils, since these are problematic soils. Seismic cone testing (SCPT) has been increasingly used for site characterization, because it allows combining stratigraphic logging with the maximum shear modulus (G0) determination. In this paper, laboratory and in-situ tests carried out at 21 sites with collapsible and non-collapsible soils are interpreted to differentiate between such soils, based on the seismic cone test (SCPT). Collapsible soils have G0/qc values greater than 23 and qc1 values less than 70, while non-collapsible soils have G0/qc values less than 23 and qc1 values greater than 70. The investigated collapsible soils have microstructure (bonding/cementation), but the classical approach cannot be sufficient to identify collapsible soils alone. An approach was used to identify collapsible soils based on maximum shear modulus (G0), normalized cone resistance (qc1), and cone resistance (qc). The chart G0/qc versus qc1 and boundaries is an alternative for distinguishing between collapsible and non-collapsible soils in the early stage of site investigation. This qualitative approach should be used in the preliminary investigation phase to select potentially collapsible soils and helps guide the sampling of potentially collapsible soils for laboratory testing. Further SCPT data from different soil types, particularly the collapsible ones, are valuable to adjust or confirm the boundary equations suggested. Full article
(This article belongs to the Collection Innovation of Materials and Technologies in Civil Construction)
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27 pages, 10573 KiB  
Article
Design and Implementation of a Futuristic EV Energy Trading System (FEETS) Connected with Buildings, PV, and ESS for a Carbon-Neutral Society
by Sangmin Park, SeolAh Park, Sang-Pil Yun, Kyungeun Lee, Byeongkwan Kang, Myeong-in Choi, Hyeonwoo Jang and Sehyun Park
Buildings 2023, 13(3), 829; https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings13030829 - 22 Mar 2023
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1772
Abstract
To realize carbon neutrality, understanding the energy consumed in the building sector, which is more than that in other sectors, such as industry, agriculture, and commerce, is pivotal. Approximately 37% of energy consumption belongs to the building sector, and management of building energy [...] Read more.
To realize carbon neutrality, understanding the energy consumed in the building sector, which is more than that in other sectors, such as industry, agriculture, and commerce, is pivotal. Approximately 37% of energy consumption belongs to the building sector, and management of building energy is a critical factor. In this paper, we present an energy sharing scenario for energy stabilization, assuming that electric vehicles and their charging stations are widely distributed in the future. Consequently, fewer fuel cars will exist, and electric cars will become the major mode of transportation. Therefore, it is essential to install charging stations for electric vehicles in the parking lots of future buildings, and business models are expected to expand. In this paper, we introduce a future energy stabilization mechanism for peak power management in buildings and present a platform that entails connection-based energy trading technology based on a scenario. We also propose an energy supply strategy to prevent excess prices incurred due to peak consumption. Then, we analyzed the electricity bill for one month through scenario-based simulations of an existing building and the proposed system. When applying the proposed system, we derived a result that can reduce electricity rates by 38.3% (best case) to 78.5% (worst case) compared with the existing rates. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Digital Technology and Smart Buildings)
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22 pages, 5609 KiB  
Article
Dynamic Response Modeling of Mountain Transmission Tower-Line Coupling System under Wind–Ice Load
by Haoran Song and Yingna Li
Buildings 2023, 13(3), 828; https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings13030828 - 22 Mar 2023
Viewed by 1326
Abstract
Transmission lines have the characteristics of being tall tower structures with a large span distribution of transmission lines that are sensitive to external loads such as wind and ice, and belong to strong, nonlinear, complex, rigid-flexible coupling systems. The force process of the [...] Read more.
Transmission lines have the characteristics of being tall tower structures with a large span distribution of transmission lines that are sensitive to external loads such as wind and ice, and belong to strong, nonlinear, complex, rigid-flexible coupling systems. The force process of the tower-line structure is a combination of instantaneous and continuously stressed, so it is not accurate to judge the safety of the transmission line based only on the operation status of the transmission tower or the conductor. In this paper, a finite element model of three towers and two lines with large span and large elevation differences is established by taking into account the tower-line coupling system. From the static point of view, the static axial force of a single tower and the contribution rate of wind and ice load are analyzed, and the ultimate bearing capacity of a tension-type electric tower is obtained by considering the bending effect and critical initial defects. From the perspective of transient dynamic response, the displacement of the tower-line coupling system under wind–ice load is calculated, and the force characteristics and force transmission process of the straight tower under wind–ice load are observed. Multiple comparison models are set up to compare and analyze the sway and tension under large span and large elevation differences, and the maximum icing thickness of each group model is obtained by repeated trials. The experimental results show that under the tower-line coupling system, the contribution of wind load to the axial force of the main material is 72.92%, and the contribution of wind–ice load to the axial force of main material is 27.6%. The maximum increase tension under transient ice-off effect is 59.58%, the ultimate force of the tension tower is 545.5 kN, and the maximum icing thickness of the transmission line under large span and large elevation differences is 28.7 cm, which is slightly larger than the design icing thickness. In conclusion, this paper can provide reference for the construction of mountain transmission towers, power safety inspection, and line health status assessment. Full article
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27 pages, 4459 KiB  
Review
Framework of 3D Concrete Printing Potential and Challenges
by Adil K. Al-Tamimi, Habib H. Alqamish, Ahlam Khaldoune, Haidar Alhaidary and Kamyar Shirvanimoghaddam
Buildings 2023, 13(3), 827; https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings13030827 - 22 Mar 2023
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 3761
Abstract
The technology of additive manufacturing, especially 3D concrete printing (3DCP), has been recently adopted in the construction industry as a viable alternative to traditional construction methods. Although the technology offers a wide variety of structural, economic, and environmental benefits, it is still restricted [...] Read more.
The technology of additive manufacturing, especially 3D concrete printing (3DCP), has been recently adopted in the construction industry as a viable alternative to traditional construction methods. Although the technology offers a wide variety of structural, economic, and environmental benefits, it is still restricted in use due to certain limitations that are still under research. This paper explains the fundamentals of the 3D printing process, its potential, challenges, as well as the different 3D printing systems. The recent literature is explored for recommended materials that possess the required properties for 3D printing, as well as reinforcement methods and techniques. This paper also reviews 3D printing extrusion using concrete and foam and explores the effect of both materials and extruding systems on the final product. The application of different additive construction systems with Building Information Modeling (BIM)-integrated algorithms are also discussed in this paper. It is believed that with providing a comprehensive knowledge of 3D printing for concrete construction, there is a huge potential to change the way cementitious materials are formulated and sustainability aspects are implemented, especially for complicated designs. Full article
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16 pages, 11837 KiB  
Article
Investigation of Corrosion Effects on Collapse of Truss Structures
by Zeynep Fırat Alemdar and Fatih Alemdar
Buildings 2023, 13(3), 826; https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings13030826 - 22 Mar 2023
Viewed by 1885
Abstract
Corrosion damage is a serious problem in steel structures. The cross-sectional loss in the structural members due to corrosion reduces the load-carrying capacity of the members and the stability of their structures. In this study, the main reasons for the collapse of three [...] Read more.
Corrosion damage is a serious problem in steel structures. The cross-sectional loss in the structural members due to corrosion reduces the load-carrying capacity of the members and the stability of their structures. In this study, the main reasons for the collapse of three steel sports infrastructure facilities after moderate snowfall were investigated by conducting field observations and detailed numerical analyses. Finite element models of the structures were developed by considering the effects of different rafter systems and corrosion damage at their columns’ support regions. The load-carrying capacity ratios and stress distributions of the structural members were determined under the effect of the snow load at the time of the collapse. The analysis results were consistent with the damage modes observed during site inspections. The snowfall was not the primary cause of the collapse; however, the section and joint losses due to excessive corrosion, improper erections, and discrepancies between the design project and the as-built project were the main reasons for the collapse. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Performance Evaluation and Improvement of Corroded Steel Structures)
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22 pages, 1371 KiB  
Article
Fostering Digitalization of Construction Projects through Integration: A Conceptual Project Governance Model
by Zhixue Liu, Ronggui Ding, Zheng Gong and Obuks Ejohwomu
Buildings 2023, 13(3), 825; https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings13030825 - 22 Mar 2023
Viewed by 3976
Abstract
The construction industry has fared poorly in the process of digital transformation, while the main challenge is the digitalization of construction projects. Changes in project management approaches are urgently required in construction organizations to better align digital technology and organizational conditions. However, little [...] Read more.
The construction industry has fared poorly in the process of digital transformation, while the main challenge is the digitalization of construction projects. Changes in project management approaches are urgently required in construction organizations to better align digital technology and organizational conditions. However, little literature has explored the pivotal role of the project management approach from an organizational perspective. To fill this gap, this research investigates ways of using a project governance model for integration to promote the digitalization of construction projects through a case study. The three integration dimensions, namely stakeholder integration, lifecycle integration, and project management knowledge integration, are identified, and governance elements under each dimension are displayed—and further stratified—based on the three levels of the governance model, including institutional level, organizational level, and behavioral level. The logical relationship between elements and their roles in project digitization is finally summarized. The developed conceptual model will provide an approach for construction enterprises to promote project digitalization. Full article
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39 pages, 18542 KiB  
Article
Experimental and Numerical Investigation of the Behavior of Steel Beams Strengthened by Bolted Hybrid FRP Composites
by Omnia R. AbouEl-Hamd, Amr M. I. Sweedan, Bilal El-Ariss and Khaled M. El-Sawy
Buildings 2023, 13(3), 824; https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings13030824 - 21 Mar 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1383
Abstract
The strengthening of steel beams using hybrid fiber-reinforced polymers (HFRPs) has gained enormous attention over the last decades. Few researchers have investigated the effectiveness of the fastening techniques without a bonding agent to overcome the undesirable debonding failure of the bonded FRP–steel system. [...] Read more.
The strengthening of steel beams using hybrid fiber-reinforced polymers (HFRPs) has gained enormous attention over the last decades. Few researchers have investigated the effectiveness of the fastening techniques without a bonding agent to overcome the undesirable debonding failure of the bonded FRP–steel system. This paper reports the outcomes of experimental and numerical investigations conducted on steel beams strengthened by HFRP using steel bolts. Twenty-two steel beams were tested in four-point loading to investigate the effect of the HFRP length and the bolt arrangement on the flexural behavior of the strengthened systems. The observed failure modes, load-deflection relations, deflection profiles, and strain measurements were also studied. The tested beams showed a ductile behavior, with 15.1 and 22.2% enhancements in the yield and ultimate flexural capacities, respectively. Simplified empirical equations were developed to predict the ultimate load of the bolted HFRP–steel beams. ANSYS software was used to model the beams’ behavior and investigate the effects of the HFRP thickness, bolt spacing, steel grade, loading scheme, and beam length on the effectiveness of the adopted fastening technique. Increasing the HFRP length enhanced the utilization of HFRPs as well as the beam’s ductility, with a reduction of up to 51.2% in the mid-span deflection. Moreover, the strain compatibility of the HFRP–steel beams was improved with an 87.2% reduction in the interfacial slippage. The bolt arrangement showed an insignificant effect on the overall performance of the beams. The numerical results verified the effectiveness of the fastening technique in enhancing the flexural performance of the steel beams, with gains of up to 16.7% and 34.5% in the yield and ultimate load-carrying capacities, respectively. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Building Structures)
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32 pages, 4756 KiB  
Review
Expanded Vermiculite: A Short Review about Its Production, Characteristics, and Effects on the Properties of Lightweight Mortars
by Plínio Campos de Assis Neto, Leane Priscilla Bonfim Sales, Palloma Karolayne Santos Oliveira, Iranilza Costa da Silva, Ilana Maria da Silva Barros, Aline Figueiredo da Nóbrega and Arnaldo Manoel Pereira Carneiro
Buildings 2023, 13(3), 823; https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings13030823 - 21 Mar 2023
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 2565
Abstract
Global temperatures have led to an increasing need for air conditioning systems. So, because of this fact, buildings have been improved in terms of their thermal and energy efficiency. Regarding this, the Brazilian standard ABNT NBR 15.575-4/2013 set minimum parameters for the thermal [...] Read more.
Global temperatures have led to an increasing need for air conditioning systems. So, because of this fact, buildings have been improved in terms of their thermal and energy efficiency. Regarding this, the Brazilian standard ABNT NBR 15.575-4/2013 set minimum parameters for the thermal transmittance and thermal capacity of sealing elements, which allow classifying the thermal efficiency of the building. In order to comply with the requirements, the usage and study of lightweight construction materials have been in focus. An example of these materials is vermiculite. The present research reviewed articles about expanded vermiculite. The study involved the examination and comparison of various articles to analyze the properties of vermiculite and the impact of its usage on coating mortars. It was possible to verify that using vermiculite in mortars caused bad workability and a decrease in mechanical strength. However, the porosity and water absorption in mortars increased. Additionally, it reduced the specific weight and the thermal conductivity of the mortars, allowing for a better thermal insulation of the rooms. As an alternative to decreasing the negative effects of vermiculite, it is possible to use chemical admixtures, mineral additions, and mix design with a greater consumption of binder or a combination of particle sizes. Full article
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20 pages, 7561 KiB  
Article
Usability and Biomechanical Testing of Passive Exoskeletons for Construction Workers: A Field-Based Pilot Study
by Sean T. Bennett, Wei Han, Dilruba Mahmud, Peter G. Adamczyk, Fei Dai, Michael Wehner, Dharmaraj Veeramani and Zhenhua Zhu
Buildings 2023, 13(3), 822; https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings13030822 - 21 Mar 2023
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 3852
Abstract
The labor-intensive nature of the construction industry requires workers to frequently perform physically demanding manual work, thereby exposing them to the risk of musculoskeletal injury (approximately 31.2 cases per 10,000 full-time equivalent workers). Exoskeletons and exosuits (collectively called EXOs here) are designed to [...] Read more.
The labor-intensive nature of the construction industry requires workers to frequently perform physically demanding manual work, thereby exposing them to the risk of musculoskeletal injury (approximately 31.2 cases per 10,000 full-time equivalent workers). Exoskeletons and exosuits (collectively called EXOs here) are designed to protect workers from these injuries by reducing exertion and muscle fatigue during work. However, the usability of EXOs in construction is still not clear. This is because extant EXO assessments in construction were mainly conducted in laboratory environments with test participants who are not construction professionals. In this research, we conducted a pilot study to investigate the usability of EXOs in a real construction workplace. Four experienced workers were recruited to push/empty construction gondolas with and without a Back-Support EXO, HeroWear Apex. Three workers were recruited to install/remove wooden blocks between steel studs with and without two Arm-Support EXOs, i.e., Ekso EVO and Hilti EXO-001. Their motions, postures, heart rates, and task completion times were recorded and compared. The workers were also surveyed to gather their attitudes toward the EXO’s usefulness and ease of use. The study results demonstrated that the workers responded to the use of EXOs differently and consequently were not unanimously in favor of EXO adoption in practice. The preliminary results and findings from this pilot study help in building a foundation of understanding to improve EXO products to fit the needs of construction workers and foster EXO-enabled construction tasks in the future. Full article
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18 pages, 8212 KiB  
Article
Sharing Is Saving? Building Costs Simulation of Collaborative and Mainstream Housing Designs
by Sara Brysch, Vincent Gruis and Darinka Czischke
Buildings 2023, 13(3), 821; https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings13030821 - 21 Mar 2023
Viewed by 1724
Abstract
Building costs play a significant role in determining the affordability of a housing project, and these depend to a large extent on design choices. This paper is based on the premise that collaborative design processes, or co-design, used in collaborative housing (CH) in [...] Read more.
Building costs play a significant role in determining the affordability of a housing project, and these depend to a large extent on design choices. This paper is based on the premise that collaborative design processes, or co-design, used in collaborative housing (CH) in Europe reduce building costs and consequently increase the affordability of these housing projects. However, research remains scarce on the extent to which CH is an affordable solution from a design perspective compared to affordable mainstream housing (MH), in which no co-design is used. Therefore, this paper aims to fill this knowledge gap by assessing the impact of design choices on building costs in CH and MH. To this end, we developed a simulation model to compare the building costs of CH with MH based on their design choices. Findings indicate that CH represents a more affordable and space-efficient solution when compared to MH, if we look at the building costs per unit. This is because CH provides less expensive units while it includes larger common spaces and extra quality. These results help to refute existing claims about the unaffordability of CH design solutions. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Architectural Design, Urban Science, and Real Estate)
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12 pages, 8949 KiB  
Article
Study on the Bearing Capacity of Steel Formwork Concrete Columns
by Shengqiang Li, Jin Wang, Zhiwei Yu, Yadong Li and Hongyan Guo
Buildings 2023, 13(3), 820; https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings13030820 - 21 Mar 2023
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1773
Abstract
Steel formworks are widely used in prefabricated buildings thanks to their good characteristics. With the rapid development of engineering construction in China, steel formwork concrete structures, characterized by convenient construction, good seismic performance, and high strength, are expected to be more extensively applied [...] Read more.
Steel formworks are widely used in prefabricated buildings thanks to their good characteristics. With the rapid development of engineering construction in China, steel formwork concrete structures, characterized by convenient construction, good seismic performance, and high strength, are expected to be more extensively applied in engineering practice. However, the bearing capacity of different forms of steel formwork concrete is still unclear. Two prefabricated columns with different internal diaphragm styles were set up for axial compression tests to investigate the performance of steel formwork columns. This study conducts monotonic static loading tests on six prefabricated steel tube column specimens and performs finite element analysis by taking steel tube thickness, rebar diameter, and internal diaphragm style as the influencing parameters. The results show that the prefabricated specimens can work in the test process, and the ultimate bearing capacity is consistent between the tests and numerical simulation. Moreover, the nephograms obtained from numerical simulation also conformed to the failure mode of the specimens in the test process. Therefore, the finite element model proposed in this study can accurately predict the stress performance of steel formwork concrete stub columns. These results offer guidance for future engineering practices. Full article
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15 pages, 2949 KiB  
Article
Use of Real Coded Genetic Algorithm as a Pre-Dimensioning Tool for Prestressed Concrete Beams
by Tarniê Vilela Nunes Narques, Roberto Chust Carvalho, André Luis Christoforo, Fernando Júnior Resende Mascarenhas, Felipe Nascimento Arroyo, Florisvaldo Cardozo Bomfim Junior and Herisson Ferreira dos Santos
Buildings 2023, 13(3), 819; https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings13030819 - 21 Mar 2023
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 1158
Abstract
In project practice, the search for optimal solutions is based on the traditional process of trial and error, which consumes much time and does not guarantee that solutions found are the optimal solutions for the problem. Many studies have been developed in recent [...] Read more.
In project practice, the search for optimal solutions is based on the traditional process of trial and error, which consumes much time and does not guarantee that solutions found are the optimal solutions for the problem. Many studies have been developed in recent years with the aim of solving problems in various fields of structural engineering with the aid of intelligent algorithms; however, when it comes to the optimization of structural designs, the approaches considered by the authors involve a large number of variables and constraints, making the implementation of optimization techniques difficult and consuming significant processing time. This research aims to evaluate the efficiency of intelligent algorithms when associated with structural optimization approaches that are simpler to implement. Therefore, a Genetic Algorithm in Real Coding was built to serve as an auxiliary tool for pre-dimensioning prestressed concrete beams. With this, the problem becomes simpler to implement, as it depends on a smaller number of variables, leading to less processing time consumption. Simulations were performed to calibrate the Genetic Algorithm and find the optimal solution later. The solution found by the algorithm was compared with the real solution of a project that had already gone through a traditional optimization process. Even in these circumstances, the proposed Genetic Algorithm was able to find, in 210 s, a more economical solution. Our studies found that even with more straightforward approaches, intelligent algorithms can help in the search for optimal solutions to structural engineering problems; in addition, using real coding in fact proved to be a great strategy due to the nature of the problem, making the implementation of the algorithm simpler and ensuring answers with little processing time. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Building Structures)
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15 pages, 4930 KiB  
Article
Performances of Heat-Insulating Concrete Doped with Straw Fibers for Use in Tunnels
by Xiao Zhang, Weitao Liu, Mengting Cao, Shuo Zhang and Jiaoyun Hou
Buildings 2023, 13(3), 818; https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings13030818 - 21 Mar 2023
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1232
Abstract
Current research efforts aim to develop insulating building materials to cope with hot tunnels by using crop straw fibers. The amount of straw fiber incorporated included different percentages of the gelling material mass: 0% (reference specimen), 2.5%, 5%, 7.5%, and 10%. The study [...] Read more.
Current research efforts aim to develop insulating building materials to cope with hot tunnels by using crop straw fibers. The amount of straw fiber incorporated included different percentages of the gelling material mass: 0% (reference specimen), 2.5%, 5%, 7.5%, and 10%. The study focused on the concrete’s compressive strength, permeability, and thermal coefficient. The thermal coefficient of dry concrete decreased with increasing fiber content. However, the porosity of concrete mixed with more straw fibers increased, thus decreasing compressive strength. Concrete with a fiber content of 7.5% had the best overall performance, and it had a low thermal conductivity (0.158 W/(m·k)). According to COMSOL simulation results, the tunnel wind flow temperature of concrete with 7.5% fiber content was lower than the tunnel wind flow temperature of plain concrete. Thus, the obtained straw fiber heat-insulating concrete is a promising candidate material for tunnel insulation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Building Materials, and Repair & Renovation)
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20 pages, 8643 KiB  
Article
Heat Flow through a Facede with a Controlled Ventilated Gap
by Aleš Rubina, Pavel Uher, Jakub Vrána, Miloslav Novotný, Ondřej Nespěšný, Daniel Skřek, Eva Šuhajdová, Jan Vystrčil and Marian Formánek
Buildings 2023, 13(3), 817; https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings13030817 - 20 Mar 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1638
Abstract
The article presents current research results in the field of airflow through a façade with a width of 1 m and a height of 13.7 m and with a ventilated gap, and its effect on the year-round heat balance of this façade. An [...] Read more.
The article presents current research results in the field of airflow through a façade with a width of 1 m and a height of 13.7 m and with a ventilated gap, and its effect on the year-round heat balance of this façade. An idea to influence airflow in the ventilated gap of the façade is presented based on the results of developed software and the suitability of closing the air gap in winter and in the transition period of the year is described. First, the boundary conditions of the calculations, which are further used in the energy balance between the interior of the building and the exterior environment are defined. In order to include these influences, a discrete analytical calculation was created. It consists of the time distribution of the investigated thermal phenomena calculations. A significant finding is an obvious benefit of controlling the airflow through a ventilated gap in the winter and especially in the transitional period of the year. This technological knowledge has a high potential for energy savings related to the heating of buildings. As the calculations show, airflow control through a ventilated façade reduces heat flow by 25–30% on average, and in contrast, it increases heat gains by 20% and the specific values are presented within the article. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Rehabilitation and Reconstruction of Buildings)
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15 pages, 2858 KiB  
Article
Experimental Study on the Influence of Humidity on Double-K Fracture Toughness and Fracture Energy of Concrete under Water Environment
by Guohui Zhang, Xinlan Ni, Xiong Wei, Zhendong Yang and Yanshuang Gu
Buildings 2023, 13(3), 816; https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings13030816 - 20 Mar 2023
Viewed by 1077
Abstract
Saturated concrete is significantly different from dry concrete in fracture mechanical properties. Using the wedge-splitting tensile method to research the rule of change in moisture content, double-K fracture toughness and fracture energy of three strength grades (C20, C30, and C40) of concrete immersed [...] Read more.
Saturated concrete is significantly different from dry concrete in fracture mechanical properties. Using the wedge-splitting tensile method to research the rule of change in moisture content, double-K fracture toughness and fracture energy of three strength grades (C20, C30, and C40) of concrete immersed in a free water environment for 0 h, 2 h, 5 h, 24 h, and 120 h were studied in order to provide support for the safety evaluation of concrete structures in a water environment. The initial cracking fracture toughness of C20, C30, and C40 concrete in saturated state were, respectively, 29.6%, 23.2%, and 33.4% lower than that in dry state. The unstable fracture toughness of C20, C30, and C40 concrete in saturated state were, respectively, 22.7%, 23.9% and 33.8% lower than that in dry state. The fracture energy of C20, C30, and C40 concrete in saturated state are only 71.99%, 70.29%, and 66.11% of that in dry state, respectively. The initial cracking fracture toughness and unstable fracture toughness of concrete all show a linear, decreasing trend with an increase in moisture content. Before the crack initiation, the measured P–CMOD curve had an obvious linear elastic stage, stable expansion stage, and unstable expansion stage. The critical crack opening displacement gradually decreases with an increase in moisture content; the deformation capacity and toughness of concrete are shown to decrease. The humidity state should be fully considered when evaluating the fracture mechanical properties of concrete. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advanced Studies in Structure Materials)
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21 pages, 1822 KiB  
Article
Defect Repair Deposit and Insurance Premium for a New Home Warranty in Korea
by Junmo Park and Deokseok Seo
Buildings 2023, 13(3), 815; https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings13030815 - 20 Mar 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1333
Abstract
Disputes due to defects in newly built houses are increasing worldwide. A house builder is responsible for repairing any defects in a newly built house. However, since house builders’ risk of closure and bankruptcy are increasing due to aggravated disputes and economic crises, [...] Read more.
Disputes due to defects in newly built houses are increasing worldwide. A house builder is responsible for repairing any defects in a newly built house. However, since house builders’ risk of closure and bankruptcy are increasing due to aggravated disputes and economic crises, builders may become insolvent and fail to perform defect repairs. In preparation for this, many countries have established defect repair deposit or guaranty insurance systems; however, the standards for these systems are not based an objective evidence since the current standards were arbitrarily established during industrialization. It has been pointed out that Korea’s housing defect repair deposit has been set excessively high and is being abused in disputes. Based on dispute cases in Korea, this study analyzed housing construction costs, deposits, and defect repair costs, resulting from lawsuits due to defects. The results confirmed that the defect repair deposit has been set too high compared to incurred defect repair costs. In addition, it was found that the guaranty insurance premium in lieu of the housing defect repair deposit was excessive compared to the damage caused by builder insolvency. In order to improve this, in this study, we proposed two alternative plans in which the housing defect repair deposit was set at a certain percentage of the construction cost based on the current Korean standard. In addition, based on the concept of different deposit levels using the scale of housing construction, such as in Australia and Canada, two additional alternative plans with different deposit ratios for each scale of housing construction were presented. The comparison results for housing defect repair deposits and guaranty insurance premiums based on the four presented alternative plans accompanied by actual cases showed that all the alternative plan deposits were higher than the actual defect repair costs. Even in the case of a guaranty insurance premium, the level was at least twice as high as the damage caused by builder insolvency. Therefore, all the alternative plans can fulfill their original role of protecting homeowners in the case of builder insolvency. At the same time, reducing the guaranty insurance premium to reflect the cost of housing construction is possible, and would benefit both house builders and home buyers. The results of this study are valuable as a reference for other countries considering establishing or revising a housing defect repair deposit system. Specifically, these findings, which analyzed the case of Korea’s socioeconomic changes as it transitioned from a developing country to a developed country, can provide important information for many developing countries operating housing defect repair deposit policies and systems. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Construction Management, and Computers & Digitization)
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35 pages, 23986 KiB  
Article
Cold Housing in Central Mexico: Environmental Dissatisfaction and Underheating Lowers Self-Perceived Health in Central Mexico
by Carlos Zepeda-Gil and Augusto Jacobo Montiel-Castro
Buildings 2023, 13(3), 814; https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings13030814 - 20 Mar 2023
Viewed by 1709
Abstract
Despite being perceived as a warm country, winters in the Central Mexican Plateau frequently reach temperatures below zero Celsius. Prolonged exposures to low temperatures resulting in heart and respiratory morbidities are estimated to be responsible for 50% of the reported illness in the [...] Read more.
Despite being perceived as a warm country, winters in the Central Mexican Plateau frequently reach temperatures below zero Celsius. Prolonged exposures to low temperatures resulting in heart and respiratory morbidities are estimated to be responsible for 50% of the reported illness in the plateau, attributable primarily to the design of homes ill-suited to extreme temperatures. Consequently, there is a growing need to ensure that dwellings provide adequate indoor thermal conditions in the region. Hence, on-site sensors were used to collect temperature and relative humidity data every five minutes in 26 living rooms in the Plateau for 11 months. From these data, a subsample was determined, resulting in dwelling-level thermal comfort and health surveys on 15 homes. Computer simulations were used to investigate whether the building itself could provide thermal comfort under different retrofitting scenarios. Multiple linear regression relating the Predicted Percentage Dissatisfaction (PPD) index to self-perceived health was undertaken. Both monitored and simulated results were matched against our underheating model, finding that 92% of the homes had cold indoor environments, some even during summer. High PPD and intense levels of underheating were positive predictors of higher self-reported health problems. More self-reported health problems were correlated with both lower life satisfaction and self-worth, and with subjects’ use of more adaptive strategies against environmental dissatisfaction. Dynamic computer simulations suggested that indoor thermal environments could be improved by enforcing the non-utilised standard NOM-ENER-020, which recommends the addition of insulation on walls and roofs. These findings suggest that the cold environments within homes of the plateau influence the self-perceived physical and mental health of its population. Hence, the application of adequate measures, such as retrofitting homes with stronger standards than the existing NOM-ENER-020 are needed in place. Full article
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18 pages, 8071 KiB  
Article
Viscoelastic Soil–Structure Interaction Procedure for Building on Footing Foundations Considering Consolidation Settlements
by Ricardo Morais Lanes, Marcelo Greco and Valerio da Silva Almeida
Buildings 2023, 13(3), 813; https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings13030813 - 20 Mar 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1191
Abstract
This paper presents a numerical methodology to analyze frame structures supported on footing foundations subjected to slow strains caused by consolidation settlements. A building project on a subsurface layer of soft soil has been analyzed. The Boundary Element Method with the Mindlin fundamental [...] Read more.
This paper presents a numerical methodology to analyze frame structures supported on footing foundations subjected to slow strains caused by consolidation settlements. A building project on a subsurface layer of soft soil has been analyzed. The Boundary Element Method with the Mindlin fundamental solution has been applied to compute the displacement resulting from the interference between pressure bulbs on the foundation. The rheological Kelvin–Voigt model has also been used for soil–structure interactions. Terzaghi’s Theory of Consolidation was used to fit the displacement–time curves. Finally, the rheological model was coupled through an iterative procedure, employing structural non-linear geometric effects. The results are consistent with settlement predicted effects and revealed that the slow distribution of efforts can cause relevant increases in some regions in the structure of the building. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Building Structures)
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14 pages, 1272 KiB  
Article
Fostering Knowledge Collaboration in Construction Projects: The Role of BIM Application
by Jiajia Cheng, Lu Huang, Lixuan Jiang, Jianghong Chen, Wenwen Chen and Yuanping He
Buildings 2023, 13(3), 812; https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings13030812 - 20 Mar 2023
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1981
Abstract
Knowledge collaboration is beneficial for project parties to assess valuable knowledge resources from others in order to enhance their competitive advantages. However, knowledge collaboration is hampered by the special project environment and temporary structure of construction projects. Based on relational contract theory, this [...] Read more.
Knowledge collaboration is beneficial for project parties to assess valuable knowledge resources from others in order to enhance their competitive advantages. However, knowledge collaboration is hampered by the special project environment and temporary structure of construction projects. Based on relational contract theory, this study employs trust and relational norms as the two relational governance mechanisms for improving knowledge collaboration. Next, this study explores the effect of relational governance mechanisms on knowledge collaboration and the moderating role of the building information modelling (BIM) application level. We collected data from 166 responses in construction projects. Our results reveal that relational norms significantly impact knowledge collaboration, which is contrary to the effect of trust. Furthermore, the BIM application level has an interactive effect with relational norms, which improves knowledge collaboration. These findings reveal that the level of BIM application significantly affects the effectiveness of relational governance mechanisms. This study suggests that project managers should help project parties to develop BIM responsibilities in order to facilitate collaborative performance. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Project Management in Construction)
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15 pages, 3905 KiB  
Article
Analysis of Rheological Characteristic Studies of Fly-Ash-Based Geopolymer Concrete
by Kiran Kumar Poloju, Shalini Annadurai, Ram Kishore Manchiryal, Mallikarjuna Rao Goriparthi, Prabu Baskar, Mayakrishnan Prabakaran and Jongpil Kim
Buildings 2023, 13(3), 811; https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings13030811 - 20 Mar 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1785
Abstract
Concrete is a versatile construction material used along with a reinforcement. Concrete is made up of binder materials and aggregates. Cement is a primary binder material used to produce conventional concrete. Carbon dioxide emissions in the atmosphere are a symptom of the issue [...] Read more.
Concrete is a versatile construction material used along with a reinforcement. Concrete is made up of binder materials and aggregates. Cement is a primary binder material used to produce conventional concrete. Carbon dioxide emissions in the atmosphere are a symptom of the issue related to Portland cement manufacture. It is estimated that one ton of cement produced releases an equal amount CO2 into atmosphere. On other hand, many industrial wastes are dumped in open spaces, leading to land pollution. Researchers have developed a construction material known as geopolymer concrete that uses industrial waste materials as a binder material to address these two issues. Excellent mechanical and durability characteristics are displayed by geopolymer concrete. For the creation of geopolymer concrete, fly ash is employed as a binder material. The drawback of utilizing fly ash is the curing method. Due to increased setting time, concrete samples require either heat curing or oven-curing. Geopolymer paste preparation is based on the type of binder materials used. In this study, GGBS is partially added with fly ash to cure specimens in ambient temperature due to presence of a higher amount calcium in GGBS. The present study investigates the consistency of geopolymer pastes, their workability, and the compressive strength of cement mortars by varying the amount of binder content (360 kg/m3 & 400 kg/m3). The molarity of NaOH was varied from 8 to 12. The ratio between binder material and alkaline to binder ratio were 0.45 and 0.50, respectively. The specimens were cured in both ambient and oven temperatures to study their strength development caused by temperature. A total of 396 specimens were cast to study the behavior of geopolymer concrete made with fly ash and GGBS (FAG). The test results revealed that the substitution of 50% GGBS with fly ash exhibited better strength properties during curing. Additionally, by increasing the binder content to 400 kg/m3, the results of 80% GGBS and 20% fly ash revealed excellent consistency among all other mixes. The oven-cured specimens showed more strength compared to specimens cured in ambient temperature, but the ambient cured specimens (ACS) attained the required strength. It was also not practically possible to cure the structural members by oven-curing in the field. The mix with 80% of GGBS and 20% fly ash can be used for construction. The required strength can also be achieved by increasing the molarity ratio. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Building Materials, and Repair & Renovation)
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20 pages, 16879 KiB  
Article
Influence of Tunnel Excavation on the Deformation of a Frame Building
by Yang Li, Guangyi Zhou, Tianjiao Li, Chun’an Tang, Bin Gong and Kaikai Wang
Buildings 2023, 13(3), 810; https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings13030810 - 19 Mar 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1428
Abstract
Tunnel excavation inevitably causes surface deformation. In urban areas, surface deformation could lead to the deformation of surrounding buildings, which may cause damage to communities when accumulated to a certain extent. However, the current construction organization and management mainly rely on on-site deformation [...] Read more.
Tunnel excavation inevitably causes surface deformation. In urban areas, surface deformation could lead to the deformation of surrounding buildings, which may cause damage to communities when accumulated to a certain extent. However, the current construction organization and management mainly rely on on-site deformation measurements, and there is still a lack of reliable prediction methods. Here, we proposed an effective evaluation method for frame building deformation based on the stochastic medium theory and the equivalent beam theory. This method could effectively evaluate the surface and building deformation after a horseshoe tunnel excavation by considering the non-uniform convergence. Furthermore, its accuracy and practicability were verified using the Nanyan Fourth Circuit Transmission Reconstruction located in Dalian, China. The results show that the spatial distribution and characteristic values of the maximum tensile strains were closely related to the ratio of Young’s modulus to the shear modulus (E/G), the building height (h), the tunnel depth (H), the tangent of the tunnel influence angle (tan β) and the convergence radius (ΔR). These achievements can provide a theoretical basis and analytical ideas for investigating the influence of shallow buried tunnel excavation on frame structure buildings in cities. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Building Structures)
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12 pages, 1362 KiB  
Article
Numerical Simulation of the Performance of Self-Healing Concrete in Beam Elements
by Khalid Alkhuzai, Luigi Di Sarno, Abdullah Haredy, Raed Alahmadi and Danah Albuhairi
Buildings 2023, 13(3), 809; https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings13030809 - 19 Mar 2023
Viewed by 1710
Abstract
The formation of cracks in concrete structures occurs due to a multitude of causes ranging from shrinkage to external loading and environmental exposure. This phenomenon can significantly affect the lifecycle of concrete structures. Self-healing concrete (SHC) is considered a promoted innovation capable of [...] Read more.
The formation of cracks in concrete structures occurs due to a multitude of causes ranging from shrinkage to external loading and environmental exposure. This phenomenon can significantly affect the lifecycle of concrete structures. Self-healing concrete (SHC) is considered a promoted innovation capable of overcoming this inevitable occurrence. In accordance with current SHC development processes, this paper utilizes the numerical simulation approach to test the performance of reinforced SHC beam specimens modeled using the commercial software ABAQUS 6.14 (Vélizy-Villacoublay, France). This paper aims to contribute to the scarce literature on SHC models by utilizing the overlooked dicyclopentadiene (DCPD) agent and ambiguous variability of crystalline admixtures. The SHC is introduced to the beam models at various depths and analyzed using load against displacement curves compared with a reference model of ordinary concrete. The effects of SHC on the mechanical properties of structural elements were determined. The results show a distinct improvement of the load-carrying capacity of SHC beams, indicating an efficient contribution of SHC in structural applications. Full article
(This article belongs to the Topic Innovative Construction and Building Materials)
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35 pages, 8553 KiB  
Review
Lateral Distortional Buckling Resistance Predictions of Composite Alveolar Beams: A Review
by Vinicius Moura de Oliveira, Alexandre Rossi, Felipe Piana Vendramell Ferreira, Adriano Silva de Carvalho and Carlos Humberto Martins
Buildings 2023, 13(3), 808; https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings13030808 - 19 Mar 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1421
Abstract
Few studies have investigated the structural behavior of steel-concrete composite alveolar beams in hogging bending regions. Their resistance can be reached by lateral distortional buckling (LDB), coupling LDB and local failure modes, or limit states of cracking or crushing in the concrete slab. [...] Read more.
Few studies have investigated the structural behavior of steel-concrete composite alveolar beams in hogging bending regions. Their resistance can be reached by lateral distortional buckling (LDB), coupling LDB and local failure modes, or limit states of cracking or crushing in the concrete slab. This case is characteristic of continuous or cantilever elements. Another critical issue is that the design and calculation recommendations only address the LDB verification on steel-concrete composite beams without web openings, thus disregarding the interaction between the buckling modes. Furthermore, it is necessary to use adaptations of these formulations for beams with web openings. This review paper aims to evaluate the different approaches for standard code adaptations to verify the LDB resistance of the beams in question and to highlight the investigations that addressed this issue. The addressed adaptations consist of different approaches which determine the cross-section geometric properties in the central region of the openings, the so-called double T section, in the region of the web posts (solid section), and the averages between the solid section and double T section. The accuracy of the formulations in question is verified against experimental results from the literature. Furthermore, discussions and suggestions for further studies are presented. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mechanical Performance of Steel and Composite Beams)
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27 pages, 8974 KiB  
Article
Mechanism and Design Method of Load Transfer into Concrete-Filled Steel Tubular Arch Ribs through Perfobond-Rib-Shear Connectors
by Yongjian Liu, Jiangjiang Li, Lei Jiang, Jianping Xian, Haotian Li, Yadong Zhao and Yunxia Gong
Buildings 2023, 13(3), 807; https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings13030807 - 18 Mar 2023
Viewed by 2211
Abstract
In terms of load transfer, the design of the joints in concrete-filled steel tubular (CFST) arch bridges is more critical than that in buildings due to the higher likelihood of steel–concrete-interface debonding. To improve the contact at the steel–concrete interface, a novel arch [...] Read more.
In terms of load transfer, the design of the joints in concrete-filled steel tubular (CFST) arch bridges is more critical than that in buildings due to the higher likelihood of steel–concrete-interface debonding. To improve the contact at the steel–concrete interface, a novel arch rib was manufactured by longitudinally welding perfobond-rib-shear connectors to the inner surface of a steel tube and then filling the tube with concrete. In this study, extensive numerical and analytical investigations on the mechanism of introducing loads into CFST arch ribs through perfobond-rib-shear connectors were carried out. A deck CFST arch bridge, namely, the Shuangbao Bridge in China, was selected as a typical application location. The design parameters, including the geometric dimensions of the perfobond-rib-shear connector and the arrangement of the perfobond rib along the cross-section and longitudinal section of the arch rib, were evaluated. The design flow for the joint with perfobond-rib-shear connectors between the vertical columns and the CFST arch ribs was proposed. To improve the load-transfer efficiency, the design scheme of the joint in the Shuangbao Bridge was optimized by replacing the weld studs with perfobond ribs. Significant increases of 1.84–4.02 in the shear resistance were found for the perfobond ribs compared to the welded studs. Additionally, the fabrication of the perfobond ribs was more convenient compared to that of the welded studs. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Building Structures)
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19 pages, 6408 KiB  
Article
Optimizing PCM Integrated Wall and Roof for Energy Saving in Building under Various Climatic Conditions of Mediterranean Region
by Sana Dardouri, Ekrem Tunçbilek, Othmen Khaldi, Müslüm Arıcı and Jalila Sghaier
Buildings 2023, 13(3), 806; https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings13030806 - 18 Mar 2023
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 2686
Abstract
Energy conservation in buildings has been the focus of many studies since nearly one-third of global energy consumption is due to buildings. Phase change material (PCM) technology promises to be an attractive solution for energy saving in buildings since it is a passive [...] Read more.
Energy conservation in buildings has been the focus of many studies since nearly one-third of global energy consumption is due to buildings. Phase change material (PCM) technology promises to be an attractive solution for energy saving in buildings since it is a passive and effective technology, as demonstrated in the literature. Therefore, this study focuses on the energy-saving performance of PCM-integrated buildings located in a Mediterranean climate to reveal their energy-saving potential. PCM is integrated both in external or internal south walls and roofs of buildings under four different climatic conditions. EnergyPlus, which is a well-known building simulation software, is adopted for building thermal analyses. The effects of melting temperature, location of PCM layer in the wall, thickness of PCM layer, type of envelope (wall or roof), and PCM double-layer system in the wall are investigated. The corresponding energy savings and CO2 emission reductions are obtained for the considered cases. The results showed that up to 41.6% reduction in energy demand can be obtained depending on the PCM application. Besides, PCM with a low melting temperature (21 °C) favored heating energy savings, while PCM with a high melting temperature (29 °C) favored cooling energy savings. Moreover, the double-layer PCM system provided higher energy savings than the single-layer PCM system, especially in warm and arid regions (Sousse and Tozeur). Full article
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