Simple method strengthens schools, other buildings against earthquakes
- Writer: Emil Venere, Purdue News Service
The flaw is widespread in China, Latin America, Turkey and other countries. The buildings have too many 'partial-height' walls between structural columns and could be easily strengthened by replacing some windows with ordinary masonry bricks, said Santiago Pujol, an assistant professor of civil engineering at Purdue.
Partial-height walls do not extend all the way to the ceiling, sometimes causing structural columns to fail during powerful quakes. The strengthening would not only be low-cost but also easy to install, Pujol said.