University of Sussex, UK

Lead has visco-elastic properties at the temperatures normally experienced by structures and as a consequence can be effective in reducing the undesirable stress build-up that can occur in masonry when contained by a frame. Lead alloys behave elastically when subjected to short-term loading and can therefore transfer load and act structurally when subjected to wind, seismic and other forms of short-term loading. The paper summarises the results from an extensive research programme into the mechanical properties of three common lead alloys and ‘pure’ lead. Results from short-term elastic and long-term creep tests are presented in a form suitable for use by structural designers. In addition the results from infilled frame test results are presented that demonstrate that a lead layer can be effective in reducing undesirable stress build-up, whilst not adversely affecting the behaviour of the structure when subjected to short-term loading.