Date of Thesis


Thesis Type

Honors Thesis

Degree Type

Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering

First Advisor

James Shields

Second Advisor

Kelly Salyards


Cold-formed steel (CFS) combined with wood sheathing, such as oriented strand board (OSB), forms shear walls that can provide lateral resistance to seismic forces. The ability to accurately predict building deformations in damaged states under seismic excitations is a must for modern performance-based seismic design. However, few static or dynamic tests have been conducted on the non-linear behavior of CFS shear walls. Thus, the purpose of this research work is to provide and demonstrate a fastener-based computational model of CFS wall models that incorporates essential nonlinearities that may eventually lead to improvement of the current seismic design requirements. The approach is based on the understanding that complex interaction of the fasteners with the sheathing is an important factor in the non-linear behavior of the shear wall. The computational model consists of beam-column elements for the CFS framing and a rigid diaphragm for the sheathing. The framing and sheathing are connected with non-linear zero-length fastener elements to capture the OSB sheathing damage surrounding the fastener area. Employing computational programs such as OpenSees and MATLAB, 4 ft. x 9 ft., 8 ft. x 9 ft. and 12 ft. x 9 ft. shear wall models are created, and monotonic lateral forces are applied to the computer models. The output data are then compared and analyzed with the available results of physical testing. The results indicate that the OpenSees model can accurately capture the initial stiffness, strength and non-linear behavior of the shear walls.