Adobe is a traditional construction technique found in historic and new construction throughout the world, often in earthquake-prone regions. Adobe structures are particularly susceptible to seismic forces due to their substantial mass and low tensile capacity. In addition, adobe is affected negatively by moisture that may penetrate from the ground or through the plaster. This paper describes the preliminary findings of an experimental program to investigate the effect of higher water content in the lower part of the wall on the wall strength behaviour under lateral loading. Lateral load tests were conducted on two quarter-scale adobe walls, one in air-dry condition (Wall 1) and another with greater water content in the lower part (Wall 2). The model walls demonstrated similar behaviour during loading in terms of deflections; however, the higher water content in the lower part had a significant effect on the wall strength. The in-plane (lateral) load capacity of Wall 2 was approximately 74% of the capacity of Wall 1.


© 2018 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/)



Date of publication

Fall 12-21-2018



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