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Ancient Masonry and Modern Composites: Antonio Nanni Gives Keynote on Innovative Developments in Masonry

On Wednesday, June 28, Antonio Nanni, professor and chair of the Department of Civil, Architectural and Environmental Engineering, gave a keynote lecture at the MuRiCo5 conference. The conference, titled, “Mechanics of Masonry Structures Strengthened with Composite Materials,” was organized by AICO (Associazione Italiana Compositi per le Costruzioni). Nanni discussed trends in the use of composites for structural strengthening and new construction in the United States.

Masonry, the building of structures from individual units – often laid in and bound together by mortar – leads to structures with high compressive strength under vertical loads due to gravity, but low tensile strength against lateral loads due to wind and earthquakes. To increase masonry’s tensile strength, composite materials with continuous fibers are embedded in a polymer or cementitious matrix and incorporated into the design of the structure.

The conference, which lasted three days, took place in Bologna, Italy, at the University of Bologna. The University of Bologna was founded in approximately 1088, making it the oldest university in Europe. At the conference, leading researchers presented and reviewed the latest achievements in modeling, testing, design, control and health monitoring of masonry structures strengthened with composite materials.

Seismic vulnerability mitigation, durability and temperature influence were heavily discussed, and laboratory tests and case studies were thoroughly reviewed to examine innovative developments in the field of masonry, especially FRCMs (Fabric Reinforced Cementitious Matrix) and their compatibility with masonry.

To learn more about the event, please click here.

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