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Discussion Forum

Proposed codal provisions for design

and detailing of beam-column joints
in seismic regions

Mr. Indrajit Barua writes exceed 0.87fy , granted that in laboratory be good to check the beam-column joints
This has reference to the paper titled conditions the ultimate strength of on the lines proposed by the author.
Proposed codal provisions for design HYSD bars may have been found to be
1.27fy . Moreover, when the stress in the Mr. Indrajit Barua
and detailing of beam-column joints in Designers' Guild
seismic regions by Sudhir K. Jain, R.K. steel is around 1.25fy , the corresponding
stress in the concrete could be very much Milonpur Road,
Ingle and Goutam Mondal published in Guwahati
the August 2006 issue of your journal. higher than fck and the concrete itself
may fail much before the steel does and Assam 781 021
The above paper is timely and pertinent.
I have done some calculations with the this mode of failure is not desirable.
data given in the authors' examples. Why, then use a factor of 1.25 ? We may Mr. D.S. Joshi writes
perhaps therefore take a factor of 1.0 This has a reference to the above paper.
However, for computing the exural instead of 1.25 or is the factor of 1.25 The seismic region should mean the
strength ratio, I feel that taking Pu = 0 for taken to cover the fact that the codal areas where the expected intensity
computing Mu/(fckbD ) for the column is provisions for computing seismic forces of earthquake ground acceleration is
overly conservative. We may perhaps are low and we need to provide for forces 2
much greater than 0.1g cm/s and not
use the minimum Pu for the purpose, higher than those anticipated by our articially upgraded zones merely due
which could be the least Pu, without codes ? In that case, something has to be to panic or other reasons (that is, Zone
any LL, resulting from frame analysis, done about preventing premature failure IV and V). For other areas less stringent
factored by 0.8 for further safety. of concrete before the steel yields. provisions can be made.

Secondly, I feel that the computation In almost all multistoreyed buildings It is true, that design and detailing
for tensile force in the rebars is also rather designed by my firm, shear walls or provisions in beam-column joints in
conservative. Recall that the area of steel diagonal bracings are provided, and the IS 13920 : 1993 do not adequately
required/provided is computed on the demand on the MR frames, as well as address prevention of anchorage and
principle that the maximum stress in the the steel in the beams and columns, are shear failure during severe earthquake
rebars at limit state of collapse cannot vastly reduced thereby. Even so, it will shaking.

16 The Indian Concrete Journal * December 2006

Clause 1 force resisting system. If columns are not to indeterminable eccentricities, they
It is not understood as to after giving stronger than beams framing into a joint, are also exposed to transverse tensile
a few important reasons out of many, there is likelihood of inelastic action. In strains. In this biaxial state of stress,
for increasing the sizes of the columns the worst case of weak columns exural a considerable reduction of strength
and importance of joint design and yielding can occur at both ends of all occurs. Cyclic loading in cross-cracked
also their provisions in ACI and New columns, in a given story, resulting in a concrete causes a repeated opening
Zealand codes. Why is it proposed that column failure sway mechanism of the and closure of cracks. Because of the
the minimum dimension of column structure. dominance of the shearing action across
to be not less than 15 times the largest the joint, movements parallel to open
beam bar diameter of the longitudinal We design our structures for only cracks also occur in the joint core.
reinforcement in the beam passing a fraction of the actual seismic force to
which they are really expected to be The joint reinforcement does not
through or anchoring into the column
subjected to, as we take in to account the play a major role in such situation.
joint, on non conservative side without
benets of over-strength, redundancies It is therefore necessary to limit the
giving any valid technical reasons,
and ductility while determining the magnitude of horizontal joint shear
when it is clear that the values given in
design forces. stress to protect the joint against diagonal
ACI code are the critical values as the
development length of the longitudinal
bars in compression govern the size of The proposal of bigger dimension
of the column requires lesser steel for When the cracks become large, the
the column along the length of the bar.
resisting same combination of forces. transverse reinforcement yields and
Research has shown that, straight beam
the process of grinding and progressive
bars may slip within the beam column
This provision of 20 percent higher splitting due to uneven concrete bearing
joint during a series of large moment
moments is a good provision from the begins. The transverse reinforcement can
reversals. The bond stresses on these
point of strong column weak beam resist shears only at this stage.
straight bars may be very large. To
substantially reduce slip during the design concept to achieve formation
of hinges at the joints in the beam However, the hysteretic response of
formation of adjacent beam hinging, it the joint core shows severe pinching. A
would be necessary to have a ratio of portion only, which is not suggested in
IS 13920 : 1993. complete disintegration of the concrete
column dimension to bar diameter of within the body of the joint can result.
approximately 32, which would result This is associated with drastic volumetric
in very large joints. On reviewing the This clause helps in increasing the
stiffness of the frame which ultimately increase of the core unless connement
available test data, the limit of 20 was is provided. This is how the connement
chosen by ACI by accepting inevitable helps in reducing the drift.
reinforcement is required to be provided
slip. in joint portion also.
Clause 1.3.1
When the frame has deep and strong
Clause 1.1 It is apparent that, diagonal tension columns, the joint shear stresses become
The sum of the moments of resistance and compression stresses are induced small and as a result the problem of
of the columns are proposed to be at in the panel zone of the joint. The diagonal cracking in the joint core
least 1.1 times the sum of the moment diagonal tension may be high, when is completely eliminated. Thus, the
of resistance of the beams along each the ultimate capacity of the adjoining physical size or volume of the joint
principal plane of the joint as against 1.2 members is developed, and this can becomes the most important parameter
proposed by ACI. lead to, extensive diagonal cracking. because, it not only directly controls the
The severity of diagonal tension is level of stress in compressed diagonal
It is well known that, because of inuenced by exural steel content and concrete but also dictates how much
the disproportionate distribution of the magnitude of the axial compression transverse steel in each direction can be
the moments around column beam load on the column. provided.
joint during the higher modes of
response of a multi storeyed frame, the The strength of the diagonal strut Further, the stiffness of the joint,
bending moments at the critical sections, controls the joint strength, when the which determines the contribution of
considerably larger than those derived joint shear forces are large and diagonal the joint deformation to overall frame
from static analysis could result. cracking occurs in the joint core. deformation, is also proportional to the
volume of the joint.
The intent of this clause is to reduce There are in fact several struts,
the likelihood of yielding in columns separated from one another by diagonal The nominal shear strength of the
that are considered as part of the lateral cracks. Not only are they subjected joint as proposed by ACI, is not be

December 2006 * The Indian Concrete Journal 17

Table 3: Mechanical properties of high strength deformed bars and wires+
No. Property Fe 415 Fe 415 D Fe 500 Fe 500D Fe 550 Fe 550 D Fe 600
(1) (2) (3) (4) (5) (6) (7) (8) (9)
0.2 percent proof stress /
i) 415.0 415.0 500.0 500.0 550.0 550.0 600.0
yield stress, Min N/mm2
Elongation, percent, Min,
on guage length 5.65A
ii) where A is the cross- 14.5 14.5 12 14.5 8 14.5 11
sectional area of the test
10 percent more 12 percent more 8 percent more 10 percent more 6 percent more 8 percent more 8 percent more
than the actual than the actual than the actual than the actual than the actual than the actual than the actual
0.2 percent 0.2 percent proof 0.2 percent 0.2 percent proof 0.2 percent proof 0.2 percent 0.2 percent
iii) Tensile strength, Min
proof stress but stress but not proof stress but stress but not stress but not proof stress but proof stress but
not less than less than 485.0 not less than less than 565.0 less than 585.0 not less than not less than
485.0 N/mm2 N/mm2 545.0 N/mm2 N/mm2 N/mm2 600.0 N/mm2 660.0 N/mm2
Uniform elongation,
percent, Min, on guage
iv) length 5.65 A where A is - 5.0 percent - 5.0 percent - 5.0 percent -
the cross-sectional area of
the test piece*
Table from revised IS 1786
*Uniform elongation, for the enhanced ductility category, must be measured and reported in the test certicate but shall not be a criterion for rejection

greater than 1.5 Aj for joints conned purpose of calculating the effective shear 3. Minimum total percentage
on all faces, 1.125 A j for joints area of the joint is not understood. elongation - 18 percent and
conned on three faces or two opposite minimum uniform elongation
faces and 0.9 Aj for others, where Clause 1.3.4 percentage - 10 percent.
A j is effective area of the joint for Shear force in the joint shall be calculated 4. Fe 550 and Fe 600 Grade Steel
resisting shear and fck is the characteristic assuming that the stress in flexural need not be used.
compressive strength of concrete cube tensile reinforcement is 1.25fy where fy
in MPa at 28 days, whereas the authors One of the reasons for collapse of
= yield stress of the steel.
have proposed, 1.5 Aj , 1.2 Aj buildings during Gujarat earthquake
and 1 Aj respectively. In earthquake resistant reinforced 2001 was the use of substandard steel
concrete structure, it is important to use in construction of reinforced concrete
It is not understood as to why the
good quality concrete and steel for their structures.
authors have proposed higher stresses
proper performance.
on non conservative side than those
permitted by ACI. Solved example
Draft Code Doc: CED 54(7303),
March 2005 published by Bureau Of Looking to Figure 5, only the columns
Clause 1.3.2 Indian Standards Draft Specication for marked C3 on grid B-2 and grid B-5, are
The effective width of the joint, as High Strength Deformed Steel Bars and subjected to uniaxial moments, where
proposed by ACI, is smaller of , Wires for concrete Reinforcement, fourth as all other columns will be subjected
revision of IS 1786 in its Table 3 (shown to biaxial moments, irrespective of the
Min [b c ; b b + h c ] if b c > b b for above) shows mechanical properties direction of the action of earthquake
concentric and coaxial arrangement of high strength deformed bars and force. It was therefore necessary as a
of configuration for beam and wires. general case, to solve the columns for
column, and Min [bc ; bb + 2x ] if biaxial bending considering minimum
In the interest of safety of earthquake eccentricity and slenderness as required
bc > bb where x is the smaller distance
resistant reinforced concrete structures by IS 456 : 2000 and also considering the
from the edge of the column in case
this needs to be corrected as follows. effect of factored axial force including
of non concentric arrangement of
conguration for beam. thrust and 20 percent increased moments
1. Upper limit on variation in yield (the exural strength of beams framing
stress Max 20 percent. into the joint in the direction considered)
Aj is given by product of effective
joint width bc and joint depth hc Fe 415 498 MPa as the lowest exural strength of the
columns meeting at a joint should be 20
Fe 500 600 MPa percent higher than the exural strength
The signicant reason, as to why the
dimension hc is replaced by 0.5 hc for the 2. Ratio of ultimate stress to yield of the beams framing in the joint in
stress should be at least 1.25. the respective direction of earthquake

18 The Indian Concrete Journal * December 2006

considered. It is known that the presence and gives a step by step procedure to before compressive stress in concrete
of moment in one direction tends to design earthquake resistant dual system reaches the compressive strength value
reduce the flexural strength of the frame which includes the calculations (f ck). Hence, the tensile stress in the
column in the other direction. The axial for columns subjected to biaxial bending reinforcement is conservatively taken
force can become negative in certain and design of internal and external as 1.25fy for computation of joint shear
circumstances. joints. to account for (a) the actual yield
strength of the steel normally being
This discussion is made to understand greater than the specied yield strength
Figure 7
the views of the authors of the article on fy, and (b) the effect of strain hardening
Column dimension is 500 mm x 400 the subject. at high strain. When the tensile stress of
mm. The provision of links is correct as HYSD bar reaches 1.25fy, corresponding
per ACI 318, but will require to provide Mr. D.S. Joshi compressive stress in concrete should be
at least one central link as it narrowly Chairman smaller than the compressive strength
escapes provision of three vertical links ISSE Committee for Standards and Codes of concrete (f ck). Hence, section size
as per IS 456 : 2000 clause and C/o S. G. Dharmadhikari and concrete grade should be such
Fig 8. Also, as per more lenient IRC 21 24, Pandit Niwas, S.K. Bole Marg, that the maximum stress in concrete
: 2000, clause 306.3.1, one vertical link Dadar (W), Mumbai 400 028 corresponding to ultimate strength of
will be required to tie central bar leaving steel (1.25 fy) is less than fck.
adjacent bars free. It is not understood
as to which code we should follow here We indeed appreciate Mr Barua
in India. The author replies: very much for providing shear walls
We would like to thank Mr. Barua and or diagonal bracings in his projects in
Conning Links Mr. Joshi for their interest on design north-east India for long years. What
and detailing of beam-column joint he has done in Guwahati needs to be
The spacing of links for the conning
provisions proposed in this paper. emulated in other cities. It is not easy to
zone shall not be less than 75 mm nor
provide ductility to a moment resisting
more than 100 mm (clause 7.4.6 of
Reply to Mr. Baruas queries: frame and enormous effort in design and
IS 13920 : 1993). In the calculations
We agree with Mr. Baruas comment that construction is required for the same. It
of connement reinforcement for the
for calculating the exural strength ratio, is much easier to make a safe building
arrangement of reinforcement of Fig.
it is conservative to calculate the moment using shear walls. We hope many more
10, using rectangular hoops of 8 mm
capacity of column corresponding engineers will go by the example of his
diameter, the spacing of hoops is worked
to zero axial load (P u= 0). We have professional practice.
out as 65 mm, which is less than 75
in fact mentioned in the paper, In
actual practice, it is desirable to take
Response to Mr. Joshis queries:
Here, 8 mm diameter confining minimum corresponding to Seismic provisions on beam-column
links at 75 mm centres in the joint is joints tend to vary widely from code to
proposed to be provided. Possibly, this actual obtained from different code. An overview of beam-column joint
is not the meaning of above clause. This provisions in some codes of different
reinforcement either could have been 10 load combinations. Since, we have not countries is available elsewhere .

mm diameter at 75 mm centres or 10 mm calculated different load combinations Considering the large variation in codal
diameters at 100 mm centres to account for the example problem in this article, provisions in different seismic countries,
for the area to be provided as required we have conservatively taken the value we need not follow the ACI exactly. In
by the calculations. fact, the proposed effective width of joint
of corresponding to = 0.0 (clause 1.3.2) is in line with New Zealand
'Design of reinforced concrete seismic code (NZS 3101: 1995) rather
structures for earthquake resistance' for the purpose of this example. than with ACI provisions.

authored by D.S. Joshi et al and published

by Indian Society of Structural Engineers, In earthquake resistant design of We agree with the concern of Mr.
Mumbai (2001), contains complete structures ductile failure of member Joshi on high strength deformed steel
explanation of all the clauses of IS 13920 is desirable rather than brittle failure. bars and therefore, we have proposed
: 1993 discussed above and also suggests Failure of steel is ductile and that of some changes in IS :13920 (clause 5.3) .

the required changes to be made in IS concrete is brittle. Brittle failure of beam- Moreover, these issues have also been
provisions taking into consideration column joint is not desirable. Therefore, discussed thoroughly in an e-conference
the provisions in various international during severe earthquake shaking, stress on 'Steel Reinforcement' by the Structural
codes available throughout the world in steel should reach tensile strength Engineering Forum of India (http://

December 2006 * The Indian Concrete Journal 19 Since these issues deals with concrete road bridges and is Reference
are beyond the scope of the present yet to evolve its own ductile provisions 1. UMA, S. R., and JAIN, S.K., Seismic design of beam-
paper, we are not discussing them for RC bridges and hence IS 13920 may column joints in RC moment resisting frames
Review of codes, Structural Engineering and
here. be used until IRC develops its own Mechanics, July 30 2006, Vol. 23, No. 5, pp. 579-
provisions. 597, .
The example problem is meant to
Column section in Fig 7 was a 2. ______Concrete structures standard, (part 1
explain the proposed clauses on beam- and 2), code and commentary on the design of
column joint. Hence, a simple beam- trial section and its size did not meet concrete structures, NZS 3101 : 1995, New Zealand
column joint C-3 in Fig 5 in the example the shear requirement. Therefore, we Standard, New Zealand.

building has been chosen to illustrate the have not detailed the conning links 3. JAIN, S.K. and MURTY C.V.R., Proposed draft
same. One could have chosen another of this trial section and revise the provisions and commentary on ductile detailing
section size to that of Fig 10. In the of RC structures subjected to seismic forces,
joint. Document No. IITK-GSDMA-EQ11-V4.0 and
revised section Fig 10, the confining IITK-GSDMA-EQ16-V3.0, http://www.iitk.
There is a variation in the provisions links are designed and detailed as per

of lateral ties in column sections in IS 13920 : 1993.

4. _ _ _ _ _ _ S t e e l r e i n f o r c e m e n t , T a t a S t e e l
different codes, for example, IS 456 e-conference, June-July 2005, http://www.
: 2000, IS 13920 : 1993 and IRC 21 : We agree with Mr. Joshi that we
1987 . These need to be reconciled by should use 10 mm diameter hoops 5. ______Code of practice for plain and reinforced
the different code committees. It may be with 100 mm centre to centre to meet concrete, IS 456 : 2000, Fourth Revision, Bureau
the requirement of clause 7.4.6 of of Indian Standards, New Delhi.
noted that clause 5.1 of IS 13920 : 1993
states The design and construction IS 13920 : 1993. 6. ______Code of practice for ductile detailing of
Dr. Sudhir Jain reinforced concrete structures subjected to seismic
of reinforced concrete buildings shall forces, IS 13920 : 1993, Bureau of Indian
be governed by the provisions of IS Dr. R.K. Ingle Standards, New Delhi, 2002.
456 : 1978, except as modied by the Mr. Gautam Mondal
7. ______Standard specications and code of practice
provisions of this code. Hence, the ties Department of Civil Engineering,
for road bridges, Section-III, Cement concrete (plain
in columns for RC buildings should be Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur and reinforced), IRC 21 : 1987, Second Revision,
governed by IS 13920 rather than by IS Kanpur 208 016 Indian Road Congress, 1997.

456. On the other hand, IRC 21 : 1987

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20 The Indian Concrete Journal * December 2006