Curtain wall is a term often associated with glass window framing. With glass, it is commonly understood that the glass has no ability to carry building loads. Wind, earthquake and thermal loads are transferred from the glass to mullions and girts. The brick curtain wall behaves in a similar manner.
In the brick curtainwall, the brick are supported on the foundation and run past the floors with attachments at the floor which isolate the vertical deflection of the building from the wall. This concept eliminates the need for perimeter floor beams that are designed to carry the vertical load of the brick. The tallest building known to the author is 180 feet. The exterior brick wall is a continuous 180 feet tall, horizontally and vertically reinforced with no ledger angles. For more information see Crittendon.