Anchor stabilizes seismic activity-exposed masonry

A new type of dissipative wall anchor solves the issues of how to protect heritage buildings in some of the most earthquake-prone parts of the world. Cintec International’s dissipative anchor consists of a set of 45 Cintecia 400stainless steel plates to which four bolts apply pressure, creating friction to an adjustable degree. There are built-in stops to restrict the sliding motion, and connectors that link to Cintec’s standard anchor rods. The anchor allows a controlled and repairable drift for the walls, managing the amount of seismic energy fed into the structure and therefore minimizing damage to the building.

The standard Cintec anchor system consists of a stainless steel anchor body encapsulated in a fabric sock. Diamond holes are drilled into the building and each anchor is placed in a hole. A specialized grout is pumped to the far end of the anchor, filling from back to front until the entire sock is inflated like a balloon. After the anchor has been inflated, the walls have been securely strengthened without affecting building’s exterior appearance.

45 Cintecii 400“We believe [the dissipative] anchor is a major breakthrough in further protecting the world’s iconic buildings, especially in areas of high seismic activity,” says Cintec International Managing Director Peter James. “This anchor has been four years in development within the NIKER program [and] undergone extensive testing in Italy.”

In 2011, Cintec was the sole British company enlisted to participate in the European NIKER project, the aim of which was to protect the artistic value of cultural heritage sites from earthquake-induced damage. It has collaborated with the University of Bath to create and test the dissipative anchor. The company’s anchors have been used to strengthen and restore historically significant structures around the globe, including Egypt’s pyramids, Windsor Castle, and the White House. — Cintec International, 800/363-6066;