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Cyclic Testing of Reinforced Concrete Double Walls

Reinforced concrete double walls are semi-precast structural elements constructed with factory-produced concrete shells on two exterior sides and cast-in-place concrete in the middle of the section. Their use has been limited in seismic zones due to the difficulty of connecting the adjacent double walls for monolithic action, and providing suitable seismic details in the presence of the lattice girder that is used to hold the concrete shells together. These limitations were overcome with the invention of discrete stainless steel connector ties with wave-shaped webs that can be used to connect the two concrete shells efficiently. This study presents experimental results on the reversed cyclic testing of reinforced concrete double walls constructed with the aforementioned ties, for the first time in the literature. Four experiments were conducted on double walls with rectangular, U-, and T-sections. Test results were evaluated in terms of strength, ductility, stiffness, and energy dissipation characteristics. The results obtained demonstrate the ability of double walls to sustain reversed cyclic displacement demands with significant ductility.