Disproportionate Collapse Mitigation in Tall Mass Timber Buildings
Hossein Daneshvar, Ying Hei Chui
Tall buildings are a unique type of structure with their own characteristic behaviour. They are most often occupied by a large number of people; therefore, their damage, loss of functionality, or, in worst case scenario, collapse will lead to catastrophic consequences. There are methodologies intended to provide structural integrity or increase structural robustness in tall buildings, thereby making structures resistant to disproportionate collapse, which is characterized by a cascading progression of damage that is not proportionate to the initial failure. Tall buildings are commonly constructed with steel and concrete. As a result, most of the attempts at providing structural integrity are dedicated to mitigating the effect of disproportionate collapse in the steel and concrete members, connections, and their systems. On the other hand, with rising demand for new sustainable buildings in urban areas, tall mass timber buildings have attracted increased attention nationally and internationally. Ease of modularization and offsite construction is one of the greatest advantages of using mass timber in tall building construction in the congested urban areas of major cities. A major challenge facing the engineering community is the lack of research studies regarding the structural robustness required to mitigate the potential of disproportionate collapse. The current study seeks to begin the process of understanding the behaviour of mass timber components and assemblages, and make recommendations regarding their performance and possible means to mitigate the occurrence of disproportionate collapse. These recommendations would lead to safer structural performance in the event of localized damage that has the potential to spread to a disproportionately large part of the structure.
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