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International Journal of Emerging Technology and Advanced Engineering

Website: www.ijetae.com (ISSN 2250-2459, ISO 9001:2008 Certified Journal, Volume 3, Issue 3, March 2013)
1

Seismic Performance Of Insulated Sandwich Wall Panel
(ISWP) Under In-plane Lateral Cyclic Loading
N. H Abdul Hamid
1
, M. F Md Fudzee
2

1
Associate Professor,
2
PhD Candidate, Faculty of Civil Engineering, UiTM, 40450 Shah Alam, Selangor, Malaysia


Abstract This research summarises the seismic
performance of insulated sandwich wall panels (ISWP) under
lateral cyclic loading. Experimental work was carried out to
determine the lateral strength capacity, hysteresis loops (load
versus displacement), stiffness, ductility and equivalent
viscous damping of ISWP. A specimen of ISWP was tested
under in-plane quasi-static lateral cyclic loading starting with
a small percentage of 0.01% drift and was increased
gradually by 0.1% drift until the maximum strength capacity
was achieved. The in-plane ultimate lateral strength recorded
for ISWP was 5.6 kN at 1.8% drift. Visual observation
showed that the cracks were started to occur at the wall-
foundation joint during pushing direction of +0.3% drift and
uplift the bottom corner of the ISWP wall. However, the
specimen did not have any defect or cracks on the surface of
wall but only buckling at the aluminium channel. Even
though, there were some failure occurred at connections
betweeen wall-foundation interface but this wall panel did
not suffer any structural damage or cracks due to the
protection given by the aluminium frame along the edge of the
ISWP wall.
Keywords Insulated sandwich wall panel, hysteresis
loops, stiffness, ductilty, equivalent viscous damping.
I. INTRODUCTION
The aim of this study is to examine the seismic
behaviour of Insulated Sandwich Wall Panel (ISWP) under
in-plane lateral cyclic loading. The ISWP composes of two
cement fiber board and separated by a layer of
polyurethane core form. The main advantages of using this
type of sandwich panels are the superior thermal
conductivity, energy saving, faster construction, less labour
for erection, capable to resist axial load, lateral load and
bending [1]. The construction of residential buildings are
easier to handle at site and reduce the construction period
because it was made up from lightweight materials. Simple
prefabrication at construction site will make this wall panel
more preferable than cast-in-situ conventional precast RC
wall panels. Furthermore, ISWP can improve thermal
conductivity, save electricity and kept the room at cool
temperature which contributes to green building in
Malaysia. The main contribution of green building is to
reduce the environmental impact and energy for new
buildings.
By using ISWP as wall panel in the construction of
residential houses, it can incorporates the Green Building
Index (GBI) and save significant energy during day and
night time. Recently in Malaysia, sandwich panels are used
in the construction of single storey house, residential
houses, commercial buildings, warehouses and cool
storage.
Up to date, a lot of research had been conducted using
masonry wall, sandwich panel under eccentrically load,
compression of sandwich panel under gravity and vertical
load, modelling of sandwich panel under axial load,
structural behaviour of sandwich panel under static loading,
thermal performance of three-wythe sandwich panel
[2,3,4,5,6,7]. Others research also conducted on local
buckling effects, flexural performance and structural
performance of sandwich panel under different densities
foam cores [8,9,10]. However, there is no research had
been carried on ISWP wall panel under lateral cyclic
loading (earthquake loading) and gravity loading.
Therefore, the aim of this study is to conduct experimental
work and to determine the seismic performance of ISWP
under in-plane lateral cyclic loading. The experimental
work was conducted to obtain the ultimate deflection, uplift
deflection and ultimate lateral strength when tested the
specimen until failed.
II. CONSTRUCTION OF WALL PANEL
The name of ISWP used in this study is SIP CW-2000
and was supplied by CYCLEWORLD Corporation Sdn.
Bhd. It is made of polyurethane with high density as the
core part and sandwiched between two layers using cement
fiber board. One specimen of ISWP was constructed, tested
and labelled as WS1 for identification. Before testing, the
alumininum frame was clamped along the perimeter of
ISWP. The installation of frame to the wall specimen is
necessary to avoid the edge of wall from damage during the
experimental work and provide extra strength to the ISWP.
One aluminium of C-channel was measured and cut
according to bottom dimension of the wall specimen. The
wall specimen is riveted at spacing 200mm center to center
together with aluminiun C-channel using 3/16 x 3/4 blind
rivet.

International Journal of Emerging Technology and Advanced Engineering
Website: www.ijetae.com (ISSN 2250-2459, ISO 9001:2008 Certified Journal, Volume 3, Issue 3, March 2013)
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III. INSTRUMENTATION AND EXPERIMENTAL SET-UP
Figure 1 shows the front elevation of a full-scale of
ISWP wall panel which attached to reaction frame using
double acuator and load cell. The specimen was tested
under reversible in-plane cyclic loading using displacement
control method. Foundation beam is bolted to strong floor
using highly thread rod and applied the lateral load at
concrete block located at top of the wall. The installation of
the wall specimen is in accordance to SPC

Modular
System for any construction projects in Malaysia. The
bottom part of wall panel is designed as pinned support and
free cantilever at top of the wall. A mass of concrete block
weighs 1.5 tonnes which acts as gravity load was slotted
from top of the wall. The foundation beam was bolted to
the strong floor and double actuator was used for loading
and unloading the wall panel in the in-plane direction.
Galvanised Iron with U-channel shape was bolted to ISWP
using high yield strength of wall-plugs to hold the wall
standing perpendicular to the foundation beam. The
specimen will be tested under in-plane lateral cyclic
loading. The subassemblage of wall panel was tested under
lateral cyclic loading by apply the load to the concrete
block located at top of the wall. The lateral displacement
and uplift of ISWP wall panel were measured using
seven(7) linear potientiometers (LVDT). Figure 2 shows
the schematic arrangement of LVDTs along left hand side
of the wall and top of foundation beam. Meanwhile, Figure
3 shows the ISWP panel which is ready for testing.
IV. TESTING PROCEDURE
The ISWP specimen was placed closely to left side of
loading frame and parallel to the double acuator and load
cell. Firstly, the surface of wall was painted with white
colour for easier marking of hairline cracks or buckling of
aluminimum C-channel. All the seven(7) LVDTs were
calibrated and all instruments were adjusted properly to
zero mark before applying the lateral load. The load from
double actuator was applied in-plane direction at the centre
of the steel plate located right side of the concrete block.
The accuracy and direction of measurement should be
given priority. Secondly, the specimen was tested using
displacement control method with small percentage of
0.01% drift applied followed by 0.05% and 0.1% drift.
The drift was increased gradually about 0.1% until 1.0%
drift and the next increment was 0.2% until the strength
capacity is achieved at 1.8% drift.

V. VISUAL OBSERVATIONS ON DAMAGES
During experimental work, the horizontal cracks were
observed at wall-foundation interface. Figure 3 shows the
horizontal cracks developed at the connection of wall and
foundation beam. These cracks were marked for every drift
and measured the length of cracks extended from the old
cracks. The hairline crack started to appear at the
connection joint when in-plane loading was applied at
0.3% drift. The next applied drift is 0.1% which resulted
in the extension of the old cracks to the whole connection
of bottom wall.
TABLE I
VISUAL OBSERVATION FOR EACH LEVEL OF DRIFT
Table I shows overall visual observation on the damages
of ISWP panel starting from 0.01% drift to 1.8% drift. The
wall specimen was tested from small percentage of 0.01%
drift until its reached yield point, ultimate strength and
strength degradation (unstable). It was observed that the
horizontal cracks began to develop at wall-foundation
interface when bottom part of wall panel started to uplift
from the foundation beam. Figure 5 shows the uplift of
aluminium C-channel and bottom part of ISWP panel at
+1.8% drift. Obviously the maximum opening gap occured
when semi-cycle of loading applied to the wall and closing
the gap after completing one cycle of loading.



Drift (%) Visual Observation
0.01 No sign of defect on the surface of wall or
foundation beam. Hairlines cracks were
appeared at connection (wall-foundation
interface.
0.05
0.1
0.2
0.3
ISWP panel was started to yield. More
hairlines cracks were observed at
connection.
0.4 Cracks at connection became wider and
aluminium frame starting to buckle. 0.5
0.6 The whole connection of ISWP panel was
fully cracked and bottom of the wall started
to uplift.
0.7
0.8
0.9 At this stage, the loading and unloading
path continuously to increase and behave
inelastic manner. The aluminium frame
were buckled at different locations along
the perimeter of the wall.
1.0
1.2
1.4
1.6 ISWP reached its ultimate strength
1.8 ISWP lose its strength and become unstable

International Journal of Emerging Technology and Advanced Engineering
Website: www.ijetae.com (ISSN 2250-2459, ISO 9001:2008 Certified Journal, Volume 3, Issue 3, March 2013)
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Another cycle of loading was repeated for the same drift.
From experimental work, the maximum uplift of wall
panel is 14.67mm measured by LVDT6 and 15.61mm
uplift measured by LVDT 7 for pushing and pulling
direction at 1.8% drift.
VI. ANALYSIS AND INTERPRETATION OF RESULTS
The analysis and interpretation of results for hysteresis
loops for LVDT 1, LVDT 2, LVDT 3, LVDT 4, LVDT 6,
and LVDT 7 are discussed. Figure 6 shows the hysteresis
loops which measured by LVDT 1, LVDT 2, LVDT 3,
LVDT 4, LVDT 6, and LVDT 7. From these hysteresis
loops, other parameters such such lateral strength, stiffness,
ductility and equivalent viscous damping can be calculated
and interpreted accordingly. The location of LVDT 1 is at
the top part of the wall and it is expected to have maximum
lateral displacement and maximum lateral load. It follows
by LVDT 2, LVDT 3 and LVDT 4 which are placed along
left hand side of the wall and spaced equally at 550 mm to
each other.
From experimental data, the ultimate load was achieved
at 5.6 kN during 1.6% drift and the lateral load dropped
back to 5 kN at 1.8% drift. The maximum lateral
displacement for LVDT 1 was measured at 33.8 mm in
positive direction and 24.34 mm in negative direction at
1.8% drift. Maximum displacement for LVDT 2 was
measured at 21.55 mm in positive direction and 21.37 mm
in negative direction. LVDT 3 has maximum displacement
of 12.78 mm in positive direction and 13.83 mm in
negative direction while for LVDT 4 has similar lateral
displacement of 1.74 mm in positive and negative
direction. Meanwhile, deformation at LVDT 5 was
recorded only 0.01 mm for both directions. This is because
it is located at the foundation beam and no movement was
recorded. The purpose of putting LVDT 5 is to measure
any slippage in horizontal movement of foundation beam
during pushing and pulling of the ISW wall panel.
Contradictory, LVDT 6 and LVDT 7 were installed to
measure the vertical displacement (uplift) of the bottom
part of wall panel and aluminium C-channel. The
maximum uplift recorded by LVDT 6 is 14.67 mm in
positive direction and 4.98 mm in negative direction
whereas for LVDT 7, the maximum uplift is 15.54 mm in
positive direction and 7.79 mm in negative direction.
Overall visual observation shows that the increment of
displacement has occurred throughout experimental work
and these displacement were measured by all the seven(7)
LVDTs. This is because all the LVDTs were located
horizontally to wall frame which has the potential to move
laterally similar to the lateral load as applied at top of the
wall.
All maximum values of lateral displacement and lateral
load were recorded at 1.8% drift where the ISWP become
unstable and near collapse. Hence, the development of
hysteresis loops show the behaviour of ISWP panel starting
from elastic behaviour followed by inelastic behaviour and
partial or full collapse of the wall. This phenomenan
explains the real behaviour of a single storey building when
earthquake or ground shaking occurred at medium or high
seismic regions.
Figure 7 shows the hysteresis loops of LVDT 1 for wall
panel. LVDT 1 was measured to be the highest
displacement. From the hysteresis loops, the seismic
performance of wall-foundation joint shows a linear
behaviour up until 0.3% drift for both push and pull of
loading. At 0.4% drift, wall-foundation joint showed a
non-linear behaviour. Meaning to say, that the wall
specimen started to yield until it achieved it ultimate
strength and become unstable. The yielding line was
represented by non-linear line of hysteresis loops. In elastic
and inelastic region of wall performances; elastic stiffness
(K
e
), secant stiffness (K
sec
) and displacement ductility ()
were calculated and were presented on the following topic.
Table II shows the value of stiffness and ductility of wall
panel for pushing (positive) direction when it tested until
failure up to 1.8% drift. Stiffness is a measure of the
strength resistance produced by a body to deformation in
the elastic and inelastic manner. Stiffness can be calculated
by dividing the lateral force over lateral displacement.
From the slope of load versus displacement graph, three
types of stiffness can be obtained known as elastic stiffness
(K
e
), secant stiffness (K
sec
) and effective stiffness (K
eff
).
The elastic stiffness (K
e
) is calculated from the slope line in
elastic region while for the secant stiffness, K
sec
was
calculated from the slope line drawn in inelastic region of
the wall panel. The effective stiffness (K
eff
) can be
calculated by dividing the ultimate load (F
ult
) by ultimate
displacement (
ult
).
Ductility is the ability of the structure to deform under
lateral load or tensile stress over certain lateral
displacement, strain and curvature. The displacement
ductility () is defined by the ratio of ultimate lateral
displacement (
ult
) to yield lateral displacement (
y
). The
yield lateral displacement (
y
) for this experiment is
5.47mm (0.30% drift). All the parameters such elastic
stiffness (K
e
), secant stiffness (K
sec
) and ductility () are
calculated for each level of drift. These parameters were
calculated for positive direction and negative direction
under in-plane quasi-static lateral cyclic loading and
tabulated in Table II and Table III, respectively.


International Journal of Emerging Technology and Advanced Engineering
Website: www.ijetae.com (ISSN 2250-2459, ISO 9001:2008 Certified Journal, Volume 3, Issue 3, March 2013)
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TABLE I
STIFFNESS AND DUCTILITY OF ISWP PANEL IN PUSHING DIRECTION
Target
drift
(%)
Positive direction
Lateral
Displacement
t
x
(mm)
Elastic
Stiffness
K
e

Secant
Stiffness
K
sec

Displacement
Ductility
(=
ult
/
y
)
0.10 1.67 1.05 - 0.31
0.20 3.49 0.53 - 0.64
0.30 5.47 0.39 - 1
0.40 7.40 - 0.31 1.35
0.50 9.30 - 0.16 1.7
0.60 11.01 - 0.11 2.01
0.70 12.87 - 0.19 2.35
0.80 14.69 - 0.26 2.69
0.90 16.63 - 0.06 3.04
1.00 18.42 - 0.02 3.37
1.20 22.44 - 0.01 4.1
1.40 26.39 - 0.015 4.82
1.60 29.90 - 0.03 5.47
1.80 33.80 - -0.13 6.18
TABLE III
STIFFNESS AND DUCTILITY OF ISWP PANEL IN PULLING
DIRECTION
Target
drift (%)
Negative direction
Lateral
Displacemen
t t
x
(mm)
Elastic
Stiffnes
s K
e

Secant
Stiffness
K
sec

Displaceme
nt Ductility
(=
ult
/
y
)
0.10 1.82 0.76 - 0.35
0.20 3.53 0.68 - 0.69
0.30 5.13 0.29 - 1
0.40 6.72 - 0.23 1.31
0.50 8.28 - 0.28 1.61
0.60 10.2 - 0.26 1.99
0.70 11.73 - 0.01 2.29
0.80 13.78 - -0.06 2.69
0.90 15.91 - -0.23 3.1
1.00 17.81 - 0.22 3.47
1.20 21.68 - -0.16 4.23
1.40 24.19 - 0.09 4.72
1.60 24.38 - 0.32 4.75
1.80 24.4 - -0.75 4.76
Table III shows the stiffness and ductility of wall panel
in pushing (negative) direction starting from 0.1% drift
until 1.8% drift. The displacement ductility of ISWP panel
in negative direction is calculated to be 4.76. It can be said
the ductility of wall connection in pushing direction have
higher ductility than pulling direction.

From both tables, the displacement ductility for ISWP is
ranging between 4.76 to 6.18 which means this type of
sandwich wall panel will experience minor to moderate
damage under moderate earthquake excitation.
The hysteretic energy dissipation is measured using
equivalent viscous damping theory for a system with Single
Degree of Freedom [11]. The area under full hysteresis
loop of load versus displacement is calculated in order to
get the amount of energy which dissipated by ISWP panel.
Equation 1 is used to calculate the equivalent viscous
damping for the system as follows:


------ Equation 1


Where:
E
D
= area of hysteresis loops
E
SO
= area under the strain energy.
Figure 8 shows the equivalent viscous damping versus
drift for first and second cycle of each level of drift. The
comparison of equivalent viscous damping between the
first cycle and second cycle is to indicate which cycle
dissipated more energy during earthquake excitation. On
average, the equivalent viscous damping for first cycle is
higher than second cycle because the amount of energy
which required to resist the lateral strength capacity of a
building is higher in the first strike as compared to second
strike or aftershock of an earthquake. From Figure 8, the
maximumn energy dissipated in first cycle of wall panel is
5.67% and 4.67% for the second cycle at 1.0% drift. This is
because the enclosed area developed from hysteresis loop
of second cycle is smaller than the enclosed area in first
cycle.
VII. CONCLUSION AND RECOMMENDATION
The ultimate load which applied for ISWP panel was
measured 5.6 kN at 1.6% drift and when the drift was
applied at 1.8%, the lateral loading dropped to 4.8 kN.
The visual observation for cracks hairline on wall panel
was observed at 0.3% drift. Wider cracks were developed
at the next repeated semi-cycles of 0.6% drift until the
whole connection length of bottom wall panel fully
cracked. Note that the wall to foundation beam connection
was designed for pinned, the yielding displacement of the
connection joint was at 0.3% drift with displacement of
5.47 mm in positive direction.



International Journal of Emerging Technology and Advanced Engineering
Website: www.ijetae.com (ISSN 2250-2459, ISO 9001:2008 Certified Journal, Volume 3, Issue 3, March 2013)
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The maximum vertical displacement was measured
15.54mm (positive direction) and maximum lateral
displacement was measured 33.8mm (positive direction) at
1.8% drift. The different percentage of equivalent viscous
damping between the first cycle and second cycle for ISWP
panel is approximately 0.81%. The energy absorbed in the
first cycle was higher than the second cycle thus leads to
the smaller enclosed area of the hysteresis loop in the
second cycle. This explained that more energy is required
to resist the strength capacity in the first cycle as compared
to the second cycle.
For ISWP panel in positive direction (pushing loading)
showed more ductile than negative direction (pulling
loading).
The displacement ductility () of ISWP panel is in the
range between 4.76 to 6.18 which indicates that the ISWP
will experience minor to moderate damage under moderate
earthquake excitation.
It is highly recommended that in the next study, the
ISWP panel should be designed according to current
seismic code of practice such as Eurocode 8 (EC 8). The
ISWP panel should be equipped with fuse-bars acting as
energy dissipators and unbonded post-tensioned tendon for
self-centring mechanism. Furthermore, this type of wall
panel which designed according to current code of practice
is expected to have higher lateral load, maintain its
stability, no structural damage and remain functional after
the earthquakes.


Fig. 1: Experimental set-up for single ISWP panel attached to reaction frame
















Fig. 2: Systematic arrangement of LVDTs along one side of ISWP
panel.


Fig 3: ISWP specimen is ready for testing.



International Journal of Emerging Technology and Advanced Engineering
Website: www.ijetae.com (ISSN 2250-2459, ISO 9001:2008 Certified Journal, Volume 3, Issue 3, March 2013)
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Fig. 4: Horizontal cracks were observed at wall-foundation interface















Fig. 5: Uplift bottom part of the wall at +1.8% drift











International Journal of Emerging Technology and Advanced Engineering
Website: www.ijetae.com (ISSN 2250-2459, ISO 9001:2008 Certified Journal, Volume 3, Issue 3, March 2013)
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Fig. 6: Hysteresis loops for LVDT 1, LVDT 2 , LVDT 3, LVDT 4,
LVDT 5, LVDT 6 and LVDT 7.

Fig. 7: Hysteresis loops analysis for wall panel

Fig. 8: Equivalent viscous damping versus drift for wall panel





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