Lateral load capacity of the common steel stud wall framing braced bays in Australia's Northern Territory

Nikolas Mpilias, Ali Rajabipour, Bede Rodeghiero, Milad Bazli

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    Construction within Australia's northern coastal region has undergone many changes over the years to adapt to its tropical climate, which is prone to devastating cyclonic events. Steel stud wall framing (SSWF) is used as a standard construction method for many residential and commercial structures within the Northern Territory. The stability of SSWF structures is primarily achieved by utilising several braced bays for external and internal shear walls to resist wind loading, which is often a critical design factor. However, the lateral load capacity of these SSWF braced bays is estimated as a value based on conservative and fundamental static analysis, which does not account for the complexity of analysing cold-formed channel and welded thin wall steel sections. This paper investigates lateral load capacity, modes of failure, and lateral deflection of a common SSWF braced bay configuration used in NT through full-scale experimental testing. Finite element simulations then have been conducted to compare the experimental results with theoretical capacities and failure modes. After calibration, the simulation model is used to determine the lateral load capacity of other SSWF braced bay configurations. The common failure modes were found to be the tensile failure of the stud flange and failure of the weld between the tensile stud and bottom plate. Results also provide a reliable evaluation of the lateral resistance of the common SSWF configurations in NT housing.

    Original languageEnglish
    Article numbere01275
    Pages (from-to)1-14
    Number of pages14
    JournalCase Studies in Construction Materials
    Publication statusPublished - Dec 2022


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