Seismic behavior of self-centering reinforced concrete wall enabled by superelastic shape memory alloy bars

Bin Wang, Songye Zhu

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

80 Citations (Scopus)


Reinforced concrete (RC) wall is a common type of structural component used in high-rise buildings to resist lateral loads induced by earthquakes. RC walls are typically designed and detailed to dissipate energy through significant inelastic responses to meet expected seismic performance under moderate-to-strong earthquakes. However, costly repair or even demolition caused by excessive residual deformation is usually inevitable. Given this deficiency, this study investigates the feasibility of utilizing superelastic shape memory alloy (SMA) bars to achieve self-centering (SC) RC walls. Under this condition, the residual deformation of SC–RC walls is reduced by superelastic SMA with large recoverable strain and remarkable fatigue properties. The mechanical properties of superelastic nickel–titanium bars and SC–RC wall design are described. A numerical SC– RC wall model is developed and validated by comparing the test results. Parametric studies of SC–RC wall systems are then conducted to investigate the effects of axial compressive load ratio, bottom slit length, and lower plateau stress factor of SMA. Results show that the proposed SC–RC walls have excellent SC ability and moderate energy dissipation capacity. The damage regions and levels of the SC–RC wall systems are also discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)479-502
Number of pages24
JournalBulletin of Earthquake Engineering
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2018


  • Energy dissipation
  • Flag-shaped hysteretic loop
  • Reinforced concrete wall
  • Self-centering
  • Superelastic shape memory alloy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Building and Construction
  • Geotechnical Engineering and Engineering Geology
  • Geophysics


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