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Condition Evaluation of Existing Structures - Masonry and Wood

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INSTRUCTOR: Alexander Newman, P.E., F.ASCE

Course Length: 1.5 Hours

Sponsored by ASCE's Structural Engineering Institute and ASCE Continuing Education.

Purpose and Background

For various reasons, masonry and wood structures often present significant evaluation challenges. Existing masonry might consist of one or more of several unrelated materials: clay, stone, concrete, even glass. These materials behave differently under load and sometimes require different investigative approaches. A common problem of old masonry is a lack of proper interconnection between the layers, or even an effective mortar. Wood structures present their own challenges. Being a natural material, wood exhibits a wide range of structural properties that are difficult to evaluate without large-scale destructive testing. In addition, many typical archaic construction practices, such as heavy notching at supports, are no longer allowed by today’s codes. Is the structure built in this fashion code-compliant? What can realistically be discovered in the field? Which evaluation techniques should be used? What to do if the design budget is insufficient for an in-depth evaluation? These and similar questions inevitably arise during condition assessments of masonry and wood structures.

This webinar provides the answers to these and many other questions. It is a concise primer on the topic of condition evaluation of existing masonry and wood structures. The instructor explains which common problems could be present in these materials and how to find them using a variety of destructive and nondestructive evaluation techniques. Real-life examples of dealing with the challenges involved illustrate the discussion.

Learning Outcomes

  • Become familiar with cost-effective methods of condition evaluation of existing masonry and wood structures
  • Explore typical masonry problems, their symptoms, and techniques for identifying them
  • Increase your knowledge of causes and signs of wood deterioration

Webinar Benefits

  • Learn about structural properties of archaic masonry
  • Become familiar with common masonry problems
  • Discover the circumstances when full-scale load testing can help determine the load capacities of wood-framed floors
  • Learn how to determine compressive and shear strength of existing masonry walls
  • Examine common problems of existing wood framing

Intended Audience

Structural and civil engineers, architects, contractors, and building officials seeking to broaden their knowledge of condition evaluation of existing masonry and wood structures will benefit from this webinar.

Webinar Outline

  • Introduction
  • Condition evaluation of masonry structures
  • Condition evaluation of wood structures