Volume 4, Issue 2 (February 2007)
Proposed Design and Method for Providing Sealed Joint Performance under Relative Story Displacement
The fatigue resistance of sealed joints to relative story displacement movements caused by earthquakes was studied experimentally and analytically, and the new joint design method was proposed, providing adequate sealed joint performance over the joint’s service life. First, the story drift R of a curtain wall panel and the number of movement cycles of relative story displacement at a sealed joint over its service life were investigated using earthquake data of the Japan Meteorological Agency. The results indicate that the number of cyclic movements at a sealed joint over its service life is inversely proportional to the story drift of the adjacent curtain wall panels. In regions where earthquakes are numerous, R=1/300 cyclic movements of the total length of the curtain wall panel occur several thousand times over a period of 75 years, while R=1/100 cyclic movements occur only several tens of times. Second, the three criteria required to create a joint design method were investigated, i.e., type of sealant, effect of cross-sectional size and shape of the sealed joint, and fatigue resistance of the sealant at intersectional zones of sealed joints to the sliding and rocking motions of curtain wall panels. It was obvious that the fatigue resistance of sealed joints was lower in the intersectional area than in the linear sections of the joints, and was lowest in the event of the same movement occurring in both vertical and horizontal joints. The fatigue resistance of a sealant at the intersection of sealed joints is not sufficient to attain the targeted service life and the fatigue resistance of this area of the sealed joint must be improved by applying larger curvature radii at the corner of the curtain wall panel. Finally, the new joint design process for the linear section and the intersection of the sealed joints to relative story displacement movements was developed based on the experimental data. Further, we proposed the methodology to estimate the expected service life of a sealed joint.