Skip to main content

Effect of beam and column dimensions on the behavior of RC beam-column joints


In the current study, the influence of beam and column dimensions on the seismic response of joints is numerically evaluated by changing beam and column dimensions in ABAQUS. Three wide column-beam joints were modeled and verified using the experimental studies available in the literature. Dimensions of verified models were then changed to evaluate the effect of element dimensions on the parameters including ultimate moment, ultimate shear and ultimate rotation. Variable parameters were the ratio of column width to beam width, Cw/Bw, the ratio of beam width to beam height, Bw/Bh, and ρ of column. It was concluded that by decreasing the ratio of Cw/Bw, both of ultimate moment and ultimate shear decreased. Additionally, by increasing the ratio of Bw/Bh, both of the ultimate moment and ultimate shear fluctuated. Moreover, by increasing ρcolumn, ultimate moment fluctuated, whilst ultimate shear increased. It was also indicated that by changing the variable parameters, ultimate curvature fluctuated.

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.

Fig. 1
Fig. 2
Fig. 3
Fig. 4
Fig. 5
Fig. 6
Fig. 7
Fig. 8
Fig. 9
Fig. 10
Fig. 11
Fig. 12
Fig. 13


As :

Area of compressive reinforcement

A g :

Gross area of element section

A j :

Effective cross-sectional area within a joint

A s :

Area of longitudinal tension reinforcement bar

A si :

Tension reinforcement area of beams

A sv :

Area of shear reinforcement within spacing S

B h :

Beam height

B w :

Beam width

C c :

Compression force acting on concrete

C h :

Column height

C s :

Compression force acting on reinforcement bars

C w :

Column width


Distance from extreme compression fiber to centroid of longitudinal compression reinforcement

\(D_{0}^{{{\text{el}}}}\) :

Initial (undamaged) elastic stiffness of the material

D el :

Degraded elastic stiffness

E c :

Concrete initial modulus of elasticity

fc :

Concrete compressive strength

ft :

Concrete tensile strength

f u :

Ultimate strength of reinforcement bars

f y :

Yield strength of reinforcement bars

f yv :

Yield strength of shear reinforcement bars

k c :

The ratio of the hydrostatic effective stress in tensile meridian to that one of the compressive meridians

M r,beam :

Resistant moment of beam

M r,col :

Resistant moment of column

M u :

Maximum moment in the joint due to applied loads

S :

Center-to-center spacing of transverse reinforcement bars

T :

Tension force acting on reinforcement bars

V c :

Nominal shear strength provided by concrete

V r :

Resistant shear

V s :

Nominal shear strength provided by shear reinforcement bars

V u :

The ultimate shear in the joint

V u,col :

Ultimate shear of column

\(\tilde{\varepsilon }_{c}^{pl}\) :

Equivalent plastic strain in compression

\(\dot{\varepsilon }^{{{\text{el}}}}\) :

Elastic part of the strain rate

\(\dot{\varepsilon }^{{{\text{pl}}}}\) :

Plastic part of the strain rate

\(\tilde{\varepsilon }_{t}^{{{\text{pl}}}}\) :

Equivalent plastic strain in tension

\(\overline{\sigma }_{c} \left( {\tilde{\varepsilon }_{c}^{{{\text{pl}}}} } \right)\) :

Effective cohesion stress in compression

\(\overline{\sigma }_{\max }\) :

Algebraically maximum eigenvalue of tensor \({\tilde{\sigma }}_{c}\)

\(\overline{\sigma }_{t} \left( {\tilde{\varepsilon }_{t}^{{{\text{pl}}}} } \right)\) :

Effective cohesion stress in tension

\(\overline{p}\) :

Effective hydrostatic pressure

\(\overline{q}\) :

Equivalent Von Mises stress

\(\dot{\varepsilon }\) :

Total strain rate

\(\varepsilon_{u\prime }\) :

Ultimate strain of reinforcement bars

\(\varepsilon_{y\prime }\) :

Yield strain of reinforcement bars

\(\eta_{c}\) :

A coefficient related to the material constant

\(\lambda_{c}\) :

Refers to the constant crushing energy as a material property

\(\sigma_{b0}\) :

Biaxial compressive yield stress

\(\sigma_{c0}\) :

Uniaxial compressive yield stress

Ф c :

Strength reduction factor for concrete and is considered 0.6

Ф s :

Strength reduction of reinforcement bars

\(\Sigma M_{nb}\) :

Sum of nominal flexural strength of beams framing into the joint

\(\Sigma M_{nc}\) :

Sum of nominal flexural strength of columns framing into the joint

α, β, γ :

Dimensionless material constant


Reduction factor which is considered 0.85

ζ :

Flow eccentricity

θ :

Joint rotation

λ :

0.75 For lightweight concrete and 1.0 for normal-weight concrete

ψ :

Dilation angle

ρ col :

Ratio of As/bd


  1. ABAQUS Analysis User’s Manual 6.10. Dassault Systèmes Simulia Corp., Providence

  2. ACI318-14 (2014). ACI Committee 318, Building Code Requirements for Structural Concrete : (ACI 318-14) ; and Commentary (ACI 318R-14). Farmington Hills, MI :American Concrete Institute

  3. Akhlaghi, A., Mostofinejad, D. (2020). Experimental and analytical assessment of different anchorage systems used for CFRP flexurally retrofitted exterior RC beam-column connections. Structures, Elsevier

  4. Alaee, P., et al. (2015). Parametric investigation of 3D RC beam–column joint mechanics. Magazine of Concrete Research, 67(19), 1054–1069.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  5. Azimi, M., et al. (2016). Evaluation of new spiral shear reinforcement pattern for reinforced concrete joints subjected to cyclic loading. Advances in Structural Engineering, 19(5), 730–745.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  6. Bakir, P., & Boduroğlu, H. (2002). A new design equation for predicting the joint shear strength of monotonically loaded exterior beam-column joints. Engineering Structures, 24(8), 1105–1117.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  7. Behnam, H., et al. (2017). Exterior RC wide beam-column connections: effect of beam width ratio on seismic behaviour. Engineering Structures, 147, 27–44.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  8. Behnam, H., et al. (2018). Parametric finite element analysis of RC wide beam-column connections. Computers & Structures, 205, 28–44.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  9. Belarbi, A., & Hsu, T. T. (1994). Constitutive laws of concrete in tension and reinforcing bars stiffened by concrete. Structural Journal, 91(4), 465–474.

    Google Scholar 

  10. Benavent-Climent, A., et al. (2009). Exterior wide beam–column connections in existing RC frames subjected to lateral earthquake loads. Engineering Structures, 31(7), 1414–1424.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  11. Birtel, V., Mark, P. (2006) Parameterised finite element modelling of RC beam shear failure. ABAQUS users’ conference

  12. Chaudhari, S., & Chakrabarti, M. (2012). Modeling of concrete for nonlinear analysis using finite element code ABAQUS. International Journal of Computer Applications, 44(7), 14–18.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  13. Chun, S.-C., & Shin, Y.-S. (2014). Cyclic testing of exterior beam-column joints with varying joint aspect ratio. ACI Structural Journal, 111(3), 693.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  14. Dabiri, H., et al. (2019). A numerical study on the seismic response of RC wide column–beam joints. International Journal of Civil Engineering, 17(3), 377–395.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  15. Dabiri, H., et al. (2020). Influence of reinforcement on the performance of non-seismically detailed RC beam-column joints. Journal of Building Engineering, 101333

  16. De Risi, M. T., & Verderame, G. M. (2017). Experimental assessment and numerical modelling of exterior non-conforming beam-column joints with plain bars. Engineering Structures, 150, 115–134.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  17. Fahmy, M. F., et al. (2018). Exploratory study of adopting longitudinal column reinforcement details as a design-controllable tool to seismic behavior of exterior RC beam-column joints. Engineering Structures, 174, 95–110.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  18. Fernández Ruiz, M., & Muttoni, A. (2018). Size effect in shear and punching shear failures of concrete members without transverse reinforcement: differences between statically determinate members and redundant structures. Structural Concrete, 19(1), 65–75.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  19. Gao, F., et al. (2020). Seismic behavior of exteriorbeam–column joints withhigh-performance steel rebar: experimental and numerical investigations. Advances in Structural Engineering, 1369433220942870

  20. Genikomsou, A. S., & Polak, M. A. (2015). Finite element analysis of punching shear of concrete slabs using damaged plasticity model in ABAQUS. Engineering Structures, 98, 38–48.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  21. Huang, R. Y., et al. (2019). Effect of joint hoops on seismic behavior of wide beam-column joints. ACI Structural Journal, 116(6)

  22. Hwang, H.-J., & Park, H.-G. (2019). Requirements of shear strength and hoops for performance-based design of interior beam-column joints. ACI Structural Journal, 116(2), 245–248.

    Google Scholar 

  23. Jankowiak, T., Łodygowski, T. (2014). Plasticity conditions and failure criteria for quasi-brittle materials. Handb Damage Mech

  24. Jin, L., et al. (2018). Size effect tests on shear failure of interior RC beam-to-column joints under monotonic and cyclic loadings. Engineering Structures, 175, 591–604.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  25. Kheyroddin, A., Dabiri, H. (2020). Cyclic performance of RC beam-column joints with mechanical or forging (GPW) splices; an experimental study. Structures, Elsevier

  26. Kim, J., LaFave, J. M. (2009). Joint shear behavior of reinforced concrete beam-column connections subjected to seismic lateral loading, Newmark Structural Engineering Laboratory. University of Illinois at Urbana

  27. Lee, J., & Fenves, G. L. (1998). Plastic-damage model for cyclic loading of concrete structures. Journal of Engineering Mechanics, 124(8), 892–900.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  28. Lee, H.-J., & Yu, S.-Y. (2009). Cyclic response of exterior beam-column joints with different anchorage methods. ACI Structural Journal, 106(3), 329.

    Google Scholar 

  29. Li, B., Chua, H. (2009). Rapid repair of earthquake damaged RC interior beam-wide column joints and beam-wall joints using FRP composites. Key Engineering Materials, Trans Tech Publ

  30. Li, B., & Kulkarni, S. A. (2010). Seismic behavior of reinforced concrete exterior wide beam-column joints. Journal of Structural Engineering, 136(1), 26–36.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  31. Li, B., et al. (2002). Seismic behavior of nonseismically detailed interior beam-wide column joints-Part I: experimental results and observed behavior. ACI Structural Journal, 99(6), 791–802.

    Google Scholar 

  32. Li, B., et al. (2003). Seismic behavior of nonseismically detailed interior beam-wide column joints-Part II: theoretical comparisons and analytical studies. ACI Structural Journal, 100(1), 56–65.

    Google Scholar 

  33. Li, B., et al. (2009). Seismic behavior of nonseismically detailed interior beam-wide column and beam-wall connections.

  34. Lim, K.-M., et al. (2016). Numerical assessment of reinforcing details in beam-column joints on blast resistance. International Journal of Concrete Structures and Materials, 10(3), 87–96.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  35. Lu, X., et al. (2012). Seismic behavior of interior RC beam-column joints with additional bars under cyclic loading. Earthquake and Structures, 3(1), 37–57.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  36. Lubliner, J., et al. (1989). A plastic-damage model for concrete. International Journal of Solids and Structures

  37. Najafgholipour, M., et al. (2017). Finite element analysis of reinforced concrete beam-column connections with governing joint shear failure mode. Latin American Journal of Solids and Structures, 14(7), 1200–1225.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  38. Omidi, M., & Behnamfar, F. (2015). A numerical model for simulation of RC beam-column connections. Engineering Structures, 88, 51–73.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  39. Pan, Z., et al. (2017). Modeling of interior beam-column joints for nonlinear analysis of reinforced concrete frames. Engineering Structures, 142, 182–191.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  40. Sasmal, S., Voggu, S. (2019). Nonseismic and seismic designed beam-column joints with rebar end anchors–Behaviour under reverse cyclic loading. Journal of Earthquake Engineering, 1–23

  41. Shafaei, J., et al. (2017). Experimental evaluation of seismically and non-seismically detailed external RC beam-column joints. Journal of Earthquake Engineering, 21(5), 776–807.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  42. Shayanfar, J., et al. (2016). A proposed model for predicting nonlinear behavior of RC joints under seismic loads. Materials & Design, 95, 563–579.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  43. Su, J., et al. (2020). Influence of beam-to-column linear stiffness ratio on failure mechanism of reinforced concrete moment-resisting frame structures. Advances in Civil Engineering, 2020

  44. Wang, P., et al. (2006). VecTor2 and formworks user manual. Canada: University of Toronto.

    Google Scholar 

  45. Yazdani, S., & Schreyer, H. (1990). Combined plasticity and damage mechanics model for plain concrete. Journal of Engineering Mechanics, 116(7), 1435–1450.

    Article  Google Scholar 

Download references

Author information




AK: methodology, data curation, software. HD: conceptualization, data curation, methodology, software, formal analysis, writing-original draft. AK: supervision, writing-review and editing.

Corresponding author

Correspondence to Hamed Dabiri.

Ethics declarations

Conflict of interest

On behalf of all authors, the corresponding author states that there is no conflict of interest.

Additional information

Publisher's Note

Springer Nature remains neutral with regard to jurisdictional claims in published maps and institutional affiliations.

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Verify currency and authenticity via CrossMark

Cite this article

Kaviani, A., Dabiri, H. & Kheyroddin, A. Effect of beam and column dimensions on the behavior of RC beam-column joints. Asian J Civ Eng 22, 941–958 (2021).

Download citation


  • CDP model
  • RC beam-column joints
  • Size effect
  • Aspect ratio
  • Ultimate moment
  • Ultimate shear
  • Ultimate rotation