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Experimental study on Single-Bay Two-storey RC
Frame Under In-plane Lateral Cyclic Loading
M. Mohamed2, N.H. Hamid1,2*,N. H. Yasim2, M.A.Masrom3, M.I. Adiyanto4 and M.S. Syaref2

1IIESM,Level 3, Block 1, Engineering Complex, UiTM, 40450 Shah Alam, Selangor

2Faculty *Corresponding author
of Civil Engineering, UiTM, 40450 Shah Alam, Selangor
3Faculty of Civil Engineering, UiTM Pulau Pinang, 13500 Permatang Pauh, Pulau Pinang
4School of Engineering, USM, Nibong Tebal, Pulau Pinang

Graphical abstract Abstract

A half-scale single bay two-storyRC frame was designed in accordance to EC8 and
constructed using ready mix-concrete by including the provision for seismic load. This
research project can be divided into three phases. The first phase involves the design of
the two-storyRC moment resistant frame by reducing the size of model into half scale of
the normal building which usually constructed at site in Malaysia. The second phase
comprisesof the construction of the model which includes reinforcement bars caging,
preparation of formwork, concreting and curing process. The third phase was
experimental set-up, calibration of instruments and testing of the specimen under in-
plane lateral cyclic loading. A double actuator was placed at top of second floor to
supply the lateral load to the model. Percentage of drift was applied to the structure
starting from±0.01% until ±2.25% with incremental of 0.25% drift. The total number of
twenty four cycles of drift was imposed to RC frame. The ultimate lateral load of 158.48
kN in pushing direction and -126.09 kN in pulling direction was recorded at 2.25% drift.
Based on the experimental result, elastic stiffness is 4.04kN/mm, secant stiffness is
1.14kN/mm, effective stiffness is 2.06kN/mm and ductility is 3.51. It can be concluded
that the RC moment resistance frame able to withstand minor to moderate earthquake
because the value of ductility is ranging between 3 to 6.

Keywords; moment resistance RC frame, elastic stiffness, ductility, lateral load,


Kerangka tetulang konkrit dua tingkat direka mengikut EC8 beserta peruntukan
bebanan sismik dan dibina dalam skala separuh menggunakan campuran konkrit
sedia campur. Projek penyelidikan ini boleh dibahagikan kepada tiga fasa. Fasa
pertama melibatkan reka bentuk kerangka tetulang konkrit dua tingkat dan seterusnya
mengurangkannya kepada separuh skala asal. Fasa kedua terdiri daripada
pembinaan model termasuk pembentukan tetulang, penyediaan acuan, proses
konkrit dan proses perawatan. Fasa ketiga adalah penyediaan eksperimen,
penentukuran instrumen dan ujian spesimen di dalam-satah bebanan kitaran sisi.
Double actuator diletakkan di bahagian atas tingkat dua untuk membekalkan beban
sisi untuk model. Peratusan drift telah digunakan untuk struktur bermula dari ± 0.01%
sehingga ± 2.25% dengan peningkatan sebanyak 0.25% drift. Sebanyak dua puluh
empat kitaran drift dikenakan kepada kerangka tetulang konkrit. Beban sisi muktamad
ialah 158.48 kN dalam arah menolak dan -126,09 kN dalam arah menarik dicatatkan
pada 2.25% drift. Berdasarkan keputusan eksperimen, kekukuhan elastik adalah 4.04kN
/ mm, kekukuhan sekan adalah 1.14kN / mm dan kekukuhan berkesan adalah 2.06kN /
mm manakala kemuluran mencatat bacaan 3.51. Kesimpulannya, kerangka tetulang
konkrit ini dapat menahan bebanan daripada gempa bumi kecil sehingga gempa
bumi sederhana kerana nilai kemuluran adalah antara 3 hingga 6.

Kata Kunci ; kerangka tetulang konkrit rintangan momen, kekukuhan elastik,

kemuluran, bebanan sisi, gempa bumi

© 2016 Penerbit UTM Press. All rights reserved

72:1 (2015) 1–6 | | eISSN 2180–3722 |

2M. Mohamed, N.H. Hamid*,M.A.Masrom,M.I. Adiyanto and M.S. Syaref/ Jurnal Teknologi (Sciences & Engineering) 72:1 (2015) 1–6


Recent earthquake in Sabah caused 61 reinforced provides sufficient percentage of reinforcement

concrete buildings include schools, hospitals and bars in the column, beam, beam-column joints and
mosques with total loss of RM94.8 million [1]. The floor slab as compared to BS8110 detailing. It is
2015 Sabah Earthquake occurred on 5 June 2015 at expected that this type of RC frame can behave
07:15 a.m. MST (23:15:43 UTC) at a focal depth of well under earthquake excitation with higher
approximately 10 km with its epicentre 15 km north ductility, stiffness, lateral strength capacity and
of Ranau, magnitude of 6.0 Scale Richter and lasting equivalent viscous damping. There are five basics
for thirty seconds [2]. Some infrastructure was system characteristics of a structure such as stiffness,
reported damaged with around 23 schools in six strength, overstrength, ductility and damping which
different districts affected, and Ranau Mosque was affect the structural behavior and seismic
also damaged due to the tremor [3].Serious performance of RC moment resisting system [11].
damage occurred to the hostels and resthouse near
the summit of Mount Kinabalu. Buildings were
similarly affected by the earthquake in Kota Belud
and Tuaran [4]. The areas around Kundasang and
During Ranau Earthquake 2015, most of the damaged
Ranau suffered water supply disruption when the
buildings were schools. The basis of design of the RC
main water drainage pipe burst, and several plants
frame was closely related to basic frame structure of
in both regions were damaged with a leakage in
the deposition tank [5]. In moderate and high schools in Malaysia. From the detailed drawing of the
seismic regions, it is vital to design the building using basic frame designed according to EC8, the size of the
seismic code of practice to ensure the safety of structure was then scaled down to half of the original
buildings. But most of the RC frames in Malaysia is size. Figure 1 shows dimensionof one-half scale single
still design using BS 8110 (non-seismic code of bay two-storeyRC moment resistingframeconstructed
practice) where there is no provision for earthquake onfoundationbeam (5000×1800×300mm) and mass of
load at all. Some of the experimental works which concrete block (4000x1500x300mm). Heightofeveryfloor
had been conducted for tunnel form building [6], is1800mm withthesizeofcolumnis200×200mm. The RC
non-seismic precast RC beam-column joint [7], frame was scaled down to comply with the space and
beam-column joint tested under vertical cyclic the load limit of the strong floor in the laboratory. Figure
loading [8], wall-slab joints of Industrialized Building 2 shows the detailing of corner beam-column joints
System (IBS) [9] and precast shear-key wall panel together with stirrup which is the most critical region of
[10] which designed according to BS8110 suffered RC frame.
severely damage on the tested structural
components. The experimental results showed that
these structural components performed poorly
under in-plane and out-of-plane loading due to low
ductility. Therefore, in order to reduce the damages
and collapse of the RC buildings, the seismic code
of practice should be adopted especially in Sabah
which can be categorized as moderate seismic
regions. In order to cater for moderate earthquake,
RC moment resisting frames should have sufficient
ductility by designing them using Eurocode 8. Two
types of seismic design are specified under
Eurocode 8 which is Ductility Class Medium (DCM)
and Ductility Class High (DCH). The design applied in
this study incorporates the DCM of EC8.
Figure 1:Isometricview of one-halfscaleRCframe.
In this paper, a single bay two-storey RC frame was
designed using EC8 and constructed in Heavy
Structure Laboratory, Universiti Teknologi MARA
Malaysia. The intention of this experimental work is
to determine the seismic performance of RC frame
under in-plane lateral cyclic loading. A half-scale
single-bay of two-storey RC frame will be designed
according to EC8 to cater for Peak Ground
Acceleration of 0.3g (PGA = 0.3g) which indicates
the medium earthquake as portrayed in Sabah. EC8
3M. Mohamed, N.H. Hamid*,M.A.Masrom,M.I. Adiyanto and M.S. Syaref/ Jurnal Teknologi (Sciences & Engineering) 72:1 (2015) 1–6

Figure 4: Loadingregimefor testing of specimen.

Figure 2: Reinforcement details of beam-column joint

3.0 EXPERIMENTAL SET-UP Figure 5: Specimen of RC frame is ready for testing

Figure 3 shows the prototypemodelofsingle-baytwo-

storey RC frame with eleven LVDTs’ located along left- 4.0 RESULTS AND DISCUSSION
hand side of the frame.Adouble actuator
with500kNcapacityloadcellwasattachedtoreactionfram 4.1 Visual Observation
e and tested under in-plane lateral cyclic loading.
Figure 6 shows the cracks pattern on the beams and
columns of single-bay two-storey RC frame tested for
pushing and pulling directions under in-plane lateral
cyclic loading. There are severaltypes of crack pattern
were observed at columns, beams and beam-column
joints such asshearcrack, diagonal crack,horizontal

Figure 3: The systematic arrangement of linear

potentiometers on single bay RC frame.

RC moment resisting
framewastestedusingdisplacement controlmethod
startingfrom drift±0.01% drift until±2.25% driftwith
increment±0.25%.Two cyclesofloading
weretestedforeach driftconsistofpushing andpullingforce
that represents first quake and aftershocks. Figure
4shows the loadingregimefor RCframe
compriseof24successivecycles. Figure 5shows single-bay Figure 6: Cracks pattern were occurred on columns,
two-storey RCframeisreadyfor testingaftercalibrationof beams and beam-column joints.
equipment take place.
Figure 7 shows the visual observation of diagonal cracks
pattern specifically occurred at beam-column joints at
±1.75% drift and ±2.25% drift. At ±0.75% drift, vertical
crack at beam and diagonal crack at beam-column
joint were observed. Increasing number and size of
cracks were observed when ±2.25% drift were exerted to
single bay of two-storey moment-resisting RC frame.
4M. Mohamed, N.H. Hamid*,M.A.Masrom,M.I. Adiyanto and M.S. Syaref/ Jurnal Teknologi (Sciences & Engineering) 72:1 (2015) 1–6

Figure 9: Spalling of concrete occurs at both top corner

of beam-column joints on second floor of RC frame.
Figure 7: Visual observation of damages of vertical and
diagonal cracks on beam-column joints. 4.2 Hysteresis Loops
From the data of hysteresis loops, the seismic
Figure 8 shows flexural cracks occurred on the beam performance of structural behavior of single-bay RC
and shear cracks occurred on the columns. Flexural frame can be evaluated in terms of lateral strength,
cracks were observed on the surfaces of beam due to ductility, stiffness and equivalent viscous damping.
the deformation of RC frame under in-plane lateral Figure 10 shows the hysteresis loops of LVDT1 which
cyclic loading. The beam withstands tension and located at top of the RC frame and parallel to the
compression during testing and causes opening and center of double actuator measured using linear
closing gaps of the cracks. Meanwhile, the column also potentiometer. The maximum lateral drift is +2.25%
experiences the opening andclosing gaps of the cracks (76.92mm) and maximum lateral load recorded by load
and these cracks can be classified as shear cracks due cell is 158.48 kN.
to the direction of the load which is in-plane cyclic
loading. A thin width shear crack of 0.7mm was
measured at bottom of the column at +1.75% drift. This is
due to existing of plastic hinge zone (PHZ) at column-
foundation interface causing the opening and closing
gap of shear cracks.

Figure 10: Hysteresis loopforLVDT1

Figure 8: Visual observation damages of vertical cracks
Figure 11 shows the hysteresis loops for LVDT3 which
on beam and horizontal cracks at column.
located at the center of beam-column joint at first floor
of RC moment resisting frame. The maximum recorded
Figure 9 shows diagonal cracks at top corner of second
lateral load using LVDT was 158.48 kN and the lateral
floor and spalling of concrete cover at -2.0% drift
displacement at this position when +2.25% drift applied
occurred at column and floor slab at top of second floor
was 33.74 mm. Meanwhile, Fig. 12 shows the hysteresis
of RC frame. Diagonal cracks and spalling of concrete
loops for LVDT5 which placed at the bottom column of
occurred due to insufficient of transverse and
the ground beam where the location of plastic hinge
longitudinal reinforcement bars in the column causing
zone is expected to occur. The recorded lateral
the reduction of confined concrete area to counter
displacement at +2.25% drift is 2.72 mm and maximum
higher lateral cyclic loading than designed. According
lateral load was 158.8 kN. It can be concluded that the
to research that had been conducted by Lu et al. [11],
maximum recorded lateral load was 158.48 kN and the
by adding diagonal reinforcement bar along the
recorded lateral displacement was decreasing with
column gives good effect to the joint and increase the
height of the column.
confined concrete area. Based on the overall visual
observation, beam-column joints suffered severe
structural damage at first floor compared to second
floor because second floor level is fix to the steel plate
and rigid due to presence mass concrete block at top
of the second floor.
5M. Mohamed, N.H. Hamid*,M.A.Masrom,M.I. Adiyanto and M.S. Syaref/ Jurnal Teknologi (Sciences & Engineering) 72:1 (2015) 1–6

4.4 Stiffness and Ductility

Stiffness of structure can be defined as the ratio of the
lateral load divided by the lateral displacement. There
are three types of stiffness when a structure subjected to
lateral load; elastic stiffness (Ke), secant stiffness (Ksec)
and effective stiffness (Keff) which are expressed in the
following equations (1), (2) and (3), respectively.

Kelastic=Fy/y (1)
Ksecant=(Fult-Fy)/(ult-y) (2)
Figure 11: Hysteresis loops for LVDT3. Keff=Fult/ult(3)

Where Fy= yield load

Fult= ultimate load
y = yield displacement
ult = ultimate displacement

From the experimental result, stiffness of specimen for

four initial drifts decreased in pushing direction however
in pulling direction the stiffness only start decrease at
±0.5% drift. According to Hamid et al.[12] as the target
drift increase, the stiffness of the specimen should
decrease. Stiffness also related to the lateral strength of
the structure which is the stiffness will decrease when the
structure losses its strength. Table 1 shows the calculated
Figure 12: Hysteresis loops for LVDT5 results for all the three stiffness parameters (Kelastic, Ksecant
and Keff) for the single bay RC frame in pulling and
4.3 Lateral Strength Capacity pushing directions for the 1st and 2nd cycle of the
Figure 13 shows the skeleton of load versus displacement experimental work. It can be concluded that the value
under in-plane lateral cyclic loading in pushing and of Keff lies between Kelastic and Ksecant.
pulling direction starting from ±0.01% up to ±2.25% drift.
Maximum strength was attained at ±2.25% drift in TABLE1: Three types of stiffness for RC frame
pushing direction. The specimen behaves in elastic Pushing direction Pulling direction
behavior from ±0.01% drift until ±0.75% drift and started 1st 2nd
(kN/mm) 1st cycle 2nd cycle
to yield before completely fail at ±2.25% drift. The cycle cycle
specimen continued to resist higher load and survive till Kelastic 4.81 3.83 3.63 4.04
±2.25% drift until there is no strength left in the structure. Ksecant 0.96 1.14 0.76 0.94
The yield displacement (Δy) was occurred at ±0.75% Keff 2.06 1.90 2.03 1.95
drift with the recorded lateral displacement
(Δy=22.04mm) and (Fy= 106.05 kN), the ultimate Ductility is the ability of a material to undergo
displacement (Δult= 76.92 mm) and ultimate lateral load permanent deformation through elongation or bending
(Fult= 158.48kN). at room temperature without fracturing. Displacement
ductility is the ratio of the ultimate displacement (ult)
over the yield displacement (y).The equation of
displacement ductility is given below:

µ= ult / y (4)

Table 2 tabulated the values of displacement ductility in

pushing and pulling directions for the 1 st and 2nd cycle of
hysteresis loops. Based on the current seismic code of
practice, EC8, the value of displacement ductility should
be ranging between 3 ≤ µ ≤ 6 to achieve the Ductility
Class Medium (DCM). Maximum lateral displacement
can be obtained from LVDT1 and divided by the yield
Figure 13:Lateral strength capacity of single bay displacement for calculating displacement ductility. The
two-storey moment resisting RC frame
6M. Mohamed, N.H. Hamid*,M.A.Masrom,M.I. Adiyanto and M.S. Syaref/ Jurnal Teknologi (Sciences & Engineering) 72:1 (2015) 1–6

maximum value of ductility of this specimen is 3.54 in

pushing direction and 3.51 in pulling direction at ±2.25% 1. Based on the visual observation on single bay RC
drift. In seismic design, close spaced of stirrup or shear frame, there are three types of cracks which are
reinforcement spacing to provide good confinement diagonal cracks occurred at beam-column joints,
of concrete and large amount of longitudinal bar is flexural cracks observed on surface of beams and
essential in order to have higher ductility [13]. shear cracks detected on columns.

Table 2: Displacement ductility for single-bay RC frame 2. The ultimate lateral strength and lateral
Pushing direction Pulling direction displacement recorded at LVDT1 are 158.8kN and
Displacement 76.92 mm, respectively which reached at +2.25%
2 nd 1st 2nd
Ductility 1st cycle drift in pushing direction.
cycle cycle cycle
ult (mm) 76.92 77.28 -62.18 -62.04
3. The value of elastic stiffness is 4.81 kN/mm, secant
y (mm) 21.75 22.04 -27.46 -20.24
stiffness is 0.96 and effective stiffness is 2.06 for the
µ 3.54 3.51 2.26 3.07 first cycle in pushing direction. The effective stiffness
lies between elastic and secant stiffness.
4.5 Equivalent Viscous Damping
4. Displacement ductility of RC moment resisting frame
Equivalent viscous damping [EVD] is defined as the
is 3.54 in pushing direction for 1st cycle which lies
ability of structure to dissipate energy during earthquake
within the minimum range of ductility (3≤µ≤6) for a
and reduce the structural damages by adding either structure to survive under moderate to severe
active or passive damper to the structures. From the earthquake while the value of ductility in pulling
hysteresis loops which obtained from experimental work, direction is 3.51.
the amount of energy dissipated in one cycle of
deformation can be calculated by the area of one loop 5. The highest value of equivalent viscous damping is
(ED) and elastic strain energy (ESO) is determined by the 7.67% from first cycle at 0.5% drift and 4.36% from
area under the triangle at maximum lateral load and second cycle at 0.1% drift. The value of equivalent
displacement. The equation for the equivalent viscous viscous damping of first cycle is higher than second
damping is derived based on Chopra [14]: cycle because more energy is required in first cycle
to resist lateral force. First cycle is implies for first strike
eq =1/4 (ED/ESO) (5) of earthquake which usually is more strong
compared to the aftershock represented by second
Figure 14 shows equivalent viscous damping was cycle.
calculated for every drift using acquired dissipated
energy and strain energy for first cycle and second 6. The values obtained from the half scale model can
cycle. Based on the result, the value of equivalent be used to demonstrate how a real building will
viscous damping for first cycle is higher compared to the behave under moderate earthquake since the half
second cycle. scale model was obtained from a full scale basic
frame design. Therefore, the full scale design is said
to be able to withstand moderate level earthquake
with satisfactory ductility, stiffness and equivalent
viscous damping values.

The authors would like to thank the Research
Acculturation Grant Scheme (RAGS), Ministry of Higher
Education (MOHe), Putrajaya, Malaysia, the Research
Management Institute (RMI) and Faculty of Civil
Engineering, University Teknologi MARA, Malaysia for
funding and provide the facilities to conduct this
research work.

Figure 14.Equivalent viscousdampingforfirstand
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