G. SARANGAPANI*, B. V. VENKATARAMA REDDY**, and CASPAR J. W. P. GROOT***
*Lecturer, Dept. of Civil Engineering, National Institute of Engineering, Mysore, India
**Principal Research Scientist, Dept. of Civil Engineering, Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore 560 012, India ***Senior Research Engineer, Delft University of Technology, The Netherlands
Low strength bricks are commonly used for load bearing masonry structures in India and other developing countries. Generally, dry bricks with cement mortars are the common choice for such masonry structures. The ability of the masonry to resist loads depends upon the bond between brick and mortar. This paper deals with studies on the flow of moisture from water-rich fresh mortars into bricks and the development of bond strength in low strength masonry.. Characteristics of local bricks (strength, water absorption, initial rate of absorption (IRA), porosity, pore size) and three types of mortar are reported. Parameters such as the rate of moisture absorption in the bricks, the transport of moisture from mortar to brick in masonry and the influence of the duration of contact on the moisture in mortar have been examined. The flexural bond strength of various mortar brick combinations has been compared It has been concluded that for proper hydration conditions for the mortar and better bond development, partially saturated bricks should be used for masonry construction.