Many historically and artistically important masonry buildings of the world’s architecturalheritageareindireneedofmaintenanceandrestoration.Inorder tooptimizesuchoperationsintermsofcost-e?ectiveness,architecturalimpact andstatice?ectiveness,accuratemodelsofthestructuralbehaviorofmasonry constructions are invaluable. The ultimate aim of such modeling is to obtain important information, such as the stress ?eld, and to estimate the extent of cracking and its evolution when the structure is subjected to variations in both boundary and loading conditions. Although masonry has been used in building for centuries, it is only - centlythatconstitutivemodelsandcalculationtechniqueshavebeenavailable that enable realistic description of the static behavior of structures made of this heterogeneous material whose response to tension is fundamentally d- ferent from that to compression. Important insights on the mechanical behavior of masonry arches and vaults come from as far back as Leonardo , Hooke , Poleni  and many other authors (see ,  and  for detailed references). Castigliano, in his famous paper on the Mosca bridge , and Signorini, in his studies on masonry beams , , showed both the possibility and necessity of taking into account the weak tensile strength of masonry material.
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Numerical methods for the structural analysis of masonry constructions can be of great value in assessing the safety of artistically important masonry buildings and optimizing potential operations of maintenance and strengthening in terms of their cost-effectiveness, architectural impact and static effectiveness. This monograph firstly provides a detailed description of the constitutive equation of masonry-like materials, clearly setting out its most important features. It then goes on to provide a numerical procedure to solve the equilibrium problem of masonry solids. A large portion of the work is devoted to examples and applications. After solving some simple equilibrium problems, for which the explicit and numerical solutions are compared, three cases dealing with the statics of important monuments are then presented. The numerical modeling yields essential information on the stress field and crack distribution, and enables assessing the effects of strengthening operations. Lastly, a ladle employed in the iron and steel industry is studied, and the behavior of the refractory material lining the metallic vessel characterized.
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