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RE: S.O.G. for resisting basement wall lateral force

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Stan is right that the key issue is buckling
resistance of the slab.  The weight of the slab will
tend to inhibit the buckling and the slab in contact
with the slab will influence the buckling shape.  Thus
in order to buckle the slab will have to be lifted off
of the ground.

When you do this analysis you will find that a 5" slab
will have considerable resistance.  If you decide to
add grade beams to help I am sure that they can be
placed much farther than 5 feet on center.

I would put a fair amount of reinforcing in the slab
and would forget about crack control joints and
perimeter expansion joints.  You need to transfer
forces across these joints and the continuous
reinforcing will prevent the crack control joints from
working as intended.  The additional reinforcing can
also control the sixe of cracks so that you should not
have problems.  I typically like #5 @ 12" oc ew in a 5
" slab.

Mark Gilligan

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