Imagine a honeycomb-like structure of hexagons, then turn it on its side. Now suppose instead of open cells, assume each cell is a solid masonry casting (a brick). While the structural properties and related good practices for rectangular brick assembled into walls and piles are well-known, I cannot find anything comparable for single or multiple adjacent walls of vertically-oriented hexagonal bricks, or guidance for enclosures and/or bracing to assure they will not fall down.

So, my question is: what is known about building and assuring the stability of such a structure?

Thanks in advance for links/cites for pertinent publications and any other insights, case studies, heuristics, stories, etc.


1 Answer 1


Similar to all brick masonries, your problem can't be solved due to the lack of testing data. The failure mechanism is two-fold - fail of the brick or fail of the joining material (usually mortar joint). As both have different engineering properties - tension, compression, and shear strengths, when combined, the resulting stress flow is very complicated and difficult, if possible, to evaluate mathematically.

Your best shot is to contact the masonry societies to find out whether there is a study or test data available; or as a rough estimate, you can treat the wall as consisting entirely of the solid bricks that have a set of unique engineering properties using transform theory (similar to that of reinforced concrete, more challenging but possible). The results shall then be compared with the lower bound of each material that present in the composite. Also, computer software that is capable of handling composite material may offer considerable help.

You can find the strength of each material from the brick suppliers, relevant engineering societies, or the structural codes.


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