Advanced Demolition Analysis Used in Hospital's Partial Implosion

Information from this article was first published in Demolition Magazine and is being reused with permission from the National Demolition Association.

Fábio Bruno Construções Ltda, based in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, successfully imploded the South wing of the Rio de Janeiro University Hospital with the help of National Demolition Association Associate Member Applied Science International's (ASI) advanced demolition analysis services.

The hospital, considered to be the first reinforced concrete structure in Rio, consisted of 16 floors with an area of 11,266 square meters and a total of 55,000 cubic meters of concrete. The project owner wanted to retain the north wing of the structure and continue operating it as a hospital.

The demolition plan called for a 65.62-foot (20-meter) section of the structure to be demolished manually and the remaining south wing to be imploded. ASI modeled the south wing with all of its structural details in 3-D including columns, beams, girders, slabs, masonry walls, expansion joints and reinforcement. The model also included weakened material models in corroded areas of the structure, making it as accurate to real-world conditions as possible.

Through ASI's analysis the demolition plan was optimized to ensure that the structure collapsed completely and did not collide with the north wing. ASI also performed a seismic analysis of the impacting debris on the soil to ensure sensitive medical equipment in the north wing and surrounding medical buildings was not adversely affected.

"The implosion went exactly the way as planned, and the client was very pleased with the accuracy. We feel that simulation is one tool that helps predict mistakes that otherwise could happen," said Fabio Bruno, director operacional of Fábio Bruno Construções Ltd.