This paper introduces the current technologies used in stability assessment of Chinese masonry budding remains. It presents both the process and contents of stability assessment. Damage types and mechanics and reasonable simulation models are key roles for stability assessment and protection countermeasures Subsequently. Also it gives an example project of stability assessment.


China's masonry building remains are part of the Chinese building remains, which have great historical and cultural values. Most of them are the world culture heritages or national level remains. Currently, many of these brick and rock made remains are in severe conditions, such as weathering, unstable or even collapse, due to natural forces and mankind activities. In recent years, the related authorities have paid much more attention to the protection of this kind of remains. Furthermore, the protecting projects now are going to be real protecting activities. The simple repair method is abandoned, due to the advancement of cognation and protection technology.

The simple repair is the rebuilt of the ancient building by using new materials and maybe new design. However, the value of the remains is solved into the building itself. If the old building is gone, all its value is gone too. The repaired new building cannot be called remains anymore. Hence, in recent years, all the craft, structure, technology and material of the ancient buildings are highly valued during protection projects being conducted.

To protect remains, not only laws, acts and the public cognition are needed, but also advanced technologies. In fact, advanced technologies are the critical assurance for scientific and effective protection of masonry building remains. The principle of "no change in original status cannot be achieved without the support of advanced technologies.

The trend of being faded and collapse of historical remains is unavoidable due to the long term effects of' natural forces and human activities. So the real thing we can do is to lengthen the expectation of those valuable remains by protecting its surrounding environment. Hence, the major work of protection of masonry building remains is to assess their stability and raise scientific and practical protection schemes accordingly.

This paper introduces the current technologies of stability assessment of masonry building remains and their applications.


The manifestations of damage of masonry building remains mainly are: large area of surface erosion, peeling, cracks, breaks, displacement, deformation and collapse. Natural forces and human activities are the main causes for these damages.

Damage types

The major damage types of masonry building remains are listed below:

  • Weathering damage: physical weathering damage and chemical weathering damage.

  • Water acting damage: leaching damage and rain, sewage washing damage.

  • Stress damage: compressive stress centralization damage, shearing stress damage and tensile damage.

  • Structural damage: partial or entire destabilization due to bad entirety of bricking-up structure.

  • Damage caused by uneven reaction among foundation, base and structure: partial damage caused by uneven subsidence of foundation and base and bad connection between base and structure.

This content is only available via PDF.
You can access this article if you purchase or spend a download.