Previous studies have suggested the maximum experimental story shear force of beam-column joint frame does not reach its theoretical value due to beam-column joint failure when the column-to-beam moment capacity ratio was close to 1.0. It was also pointed out that under a certain amount of axial force, an axial collapse and a sudden decrease of lateral load-carrying capacity may occur at the joint. Although increasing joint transverse reinforcement could improve the lateral load-carrying capacity and axial load-carrying capacity of beam-column joint frame, the conditions considering varying axial force were still not well investigated. For this purpose, 7 full-scale specimens with no-axial force and 14 half-scale specimens with varying axial force are designed and subjected to static loading tests. Comparing the experimental results of the two types of specimens, it has indicated that introducing the varying axial force leads to a reduction of the required joint transverse reinforcement ratio which can avoid the beam-column joint failure. For specimens with varying axial force, to prevent beam-column joint failure and axial collapse, the lower limit of joint transverse reinforcement ratio is acquired when given a column-to-beam moment capacity ratio.
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