A novel approach to evaluate masonry arch stability on the basis of limit analysis theory and non-destructive geometric characterization
Knowledge of the functional and conservation state of a structure is a fundamental aspect in order to achieve its maintenance and preservation. Having adequate techniques for reaching this purpose is one of the most important aspects for professionals working about built-up structures. Geometry usually plays an important role in the diagnosis of these structures, and for masonry arches particularly. The most common software packages focused on the stability analysis of masonry arches use rigid blocks assuming masonry as plastic material into the context of Limit Analysis Theory.
This paper presents the first results of a novel methodology for the analysis of arch bridge stability based on the construction of integral 3D models of entire vaults. This geometric reconstruction is achieved thanks to the employment of non-destructive techniques such as photogrammetry and Ground Penetrating Radar. Then, stability of vaults is evaluated through a tool specifically developed using Matlab software.