Cintec Protects People, Property Against Earthquakes

Words: Dan Kamys

Cintec Protects People, Property Against Earthquakes


Cintec North America, a structural masonry retrofit strengthening, repair, and preservation company, offers solutions to protect people and property against earthquakes. Seistec, a CINTEC Reinforcing Anchor System, is used for seismic repair or for retrofitting seismic upgrading of structures made of brick, stone, terracotta, adobe, or even timber. Seistec internally strengthens the integrity of wall-to-wall, wall-to-roof, and wall-to-floor constructions while remaining sensitive to the original architecture.

CINTEC earthquake experts are currently working with an international delegation to evaluate the structural damage inflicted upon the Christchurch Cathedral in Christchurch, New Zealand during the February 2011 earthquake. The two CINTEC engineers involved with the project are Bill Jordan, who heads CINTEC’s Australian operation, and Sarah Paganoni, who is part of the NIKER project, a group working to protect cultural heritage from earthquake-induced risk.

CINTEC’s Seistec (SEISmic TEChnology) process begins with an inspection of the structure following a site visit by the Engineer of Record. The structure is then computer-modeled and animated using the discrete element technique to visualize potential stresses incurred during seismic loading. This unique software analysis assesses the behavioral probability and the risk inherent to the structure in order to determine the best positioning of the CINTEC Reinforcing Anchor System.

At the site, the CINTEC Reinforcing Anchor System, fashioned out of a steel bar enclosed in a mesh fabric sleeve, is inserted into the structure in need of reinforcement. A specially-developed, non-polymer, cement-like grout is then injected into the sleeve under low pressure.  The grout then fuses with the mesh, expands, and shapes itself around the steel to fit the space. CINTEC uses state-of-the-art dry- or low-volume wet diamond drilling techniques to reduce or even eliminate water damage associated with conventional wet drilling.

The Seistec system may be used in a wide range of masonry materials. The anchor body size and even material type can be adjusted, as can the size of the diameter of the cored hole, based on the condition of parent material and requirements of the Engineer of Record.

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