On the need of distinguishing ductile and brittle failure modes in timber connections with dowel-type fasteners
Timber connections can fail in a ductile or in a brittle way. A structural design that guarantees a ductile behaviour in case of failure is desirable, especially when facing extreme situations such as earthquakes. This work discusses how the European Yield Model (based on a ductile failure mechanism), included in many standards, combined with a reduction of the effective number of fasteners may provide too conservative results, which may inadvertently lead to risky situations in which a connection assumed to fail under a ductile mechanism would actually fail in a brittle manner. Within this paper, a proposal to improve the discrimination ability to correctly predict the failure mode is proposed.