Combined experimental and theoretical study on the blast response of arching masonry walls

Publication Name

International Journal of Impact Engineering


This paper studies the nonlinear dynamic response of arching masonry walls to blast load. The methodology combines laboratory blast testing and nonlinear dynamic modeling of arching one-way masonry walls and their response to blast load. The paper aims at enhancing the understanding of the dynamic and nonlinear physical response of the structural system. The experimental phase focuses on a one-way arching masonry wall tested in a blast simulator. The test is designed to explore global and local measures of the response of such walls. New experimental data that contributes to the understanding of the blast response and for validating theoretical and numerical models is presented. The theoretical phase develops a nonlinear, dynamic, continuous beam-type model that considers the deformability of the mortar joints and the masonry units. The model combines inertial effects with geometrical and material nonlinearities and uses the finite element method for the numerical solution. The model is examined and evaluated against the experimental benchmark, and then it is used to explore the impact of the boundary conditions and the blast intensity on the dynamic response. The combined investigation highlights, explores, and quantifies the unique aspects of the complex dynamic response of such walls to blast loading.

Open Access Status

This publication is not available as open access



Article Number




Link to publisher version (DOI)