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The application of partly decoupled approach by means of continuum mechanics facilitates the calculation of structural responses due to welding. The numerical results demonstrate the ability of a qualitative prediction of welded connections. As it is intended to integrate the local effects of a joint in structural analysis of steel constructions, it is necessary to meet higher approaches towards quality. The wide array of material parameters are presented, which are affecting the thermal, metallurgical and mechanical behavior, and which have to be identified. For that purpose further investigations are necessary to analyze the sensitivity of the models towards different material properties. The experimental determination of every material parameter is not possible due to the extraordinary laborious efforts needed. Besides that, experimentally identified parameters can be applied only for the tested steel quality for measured temperature-time regimes. For that reason alternative approaches for identification of material parameters, such as optimization strategies, have to be applied. After a definition of material parameters a quantitative prediction of welded connections will also be possible. Numerical results show the effect of phase transformation, activated by welding process, on residual stress state. As these phenomena occur in local areas in the range of crystal and grain sizes, the description of microscopic phenomena and their propagation on a macroscopic level due to approaches of homogenization might be expedient. Nevertheless, one should bear in mind, the increasing number of material parameters as well as the complexity of their experimental determination. Thus the microscopic approach should always be investigated under the scope of ability and efficiency of a required prediction. Under certain circumstances a step backwards, adopting a phenomenological approach, also can be beneficial.

ESTIMATING UNCERTAINTIES FROM INACCURATE MEASUREMENT DATA USING MAXIMUM ENTROPY DISTRIBUTIONS
(2010)

Modern engineering design often considers uncertainties in geometrical and material parameters and in the loading conditions. Based on initial assumptions on the stochastic properties as mean values, standard deviations and the distribution functions of these uncertain parameters a probabilistic analysis is carried out. In many application fields probabilities of the exceedance of failure criteria are computed. The out-coming failure probability is strongly dependent on the initial assumptions on the random variable properties. Measurements are always more or less inaccurate data due to varying environmental conditions during the measurement procedure. Furthermore the estimation of stochastic properties from a limited number of realisation also causes uncertainties in these quantities. Thus the assumption of exactly known stochastic properties by neglecting these uncertainties may not lead to very useful probabilistic measures in a design process. In this paper we assume the stochastic properties of a random variable as uncertain quantities caused by so-called epistemic uncertainties. Instead of predefined distribution types we use the maximum entropy distribution which enables the description of a wide range of distribution functions based on the first four stochastic moments. These moments are taken again as random variables to model the epistemic scatter in the stochastic assumptions. The main point of this paper is the discussion on the estimation of these uncertain stochastic properties based on inaccurate measurements. We investigate the bootstrap algorithm for its applicability to quantify the uncertainties in the stochastic properties considering imprecise measurement data. Based on the obtained estimates we apply standard stochastic analysis on a simple example to demonstrate the difference and the necessity of the proposed approach.

In spite of the extensive research in dynamic soil-structure interaction (SSI), there still exist miscon-ceptions concerning the role of SSI in the seismic performance of structures, especially the ones founded on soft soil. This is due to the fact that current analytical SSI models that are used to evaluate the influence of soil on the overall structural behavior are approximate models and may involve creeds and practices that are not always precise. This is especially true in the codified approaches which in-clude substantial approximations to provide simple frameworks for the design. As the direct numerical analysis requires a high computational effort, performing an analysis considering SSI is computationally uneconomical for regular design applications. This paper outlines the set up some milestones for evaluating SSI models. This will be achieved by investigating the different assumptions and involved factors, as well as varying the configurations of R/C moment-resisting frame structures supported by single footings which are subject to seismic excita-tions. It is noted that the scope of this paper is to highlight, rather than fully resolve, the above subject. A rough draft of the proposed approach is presented in this paper, whereas a thorough illustration will be carried out throughout the presentation in the course of the conference.

Nonlinear analyses are characterised by approximations of the fundamental equations in different quality. Starting with a general description of nonlinear finite element formulation the fundamental equations are derived for plane truss elements. Special emphasis is placed on the determination of internal and external system energy as well as influence of different quality approaches for the displacement-strain relationship on solution quality. To simplify the solution procedure the nonlinear function describing the kinematics is expanded into a Taylor series and truncated after the n-th series term. The different kinematics influence speed of convergence as well as exactness of solution. On a simple truss structure this influence is shown. To assess the quality of different formulations concerning the nonlinear kinematic equation three approaches are discussed. First the overall internal and external energy is compared for different kinematical models. In a second step the energy content related to single terms describing displacement-strain relationship is investigated and used for quality control following two different paths. Based on single ε-terms an adaptive scheme is used to change the kinematical model depending on increasing nonlinearity of the structure. The solution quality has turned out satisfactory compared to the exact result. More detailed investigations are necessary to find criteria for the threshold values for the iterative process as well as for decision on number and step size of incremental load steps.

Building information modeling offers a huge potential for increasing the productivity and quality of construction planning processes. Despite its promising concept, this approach has not found widespread use. One of the reasons is the insufficient coupling of the structural models with the general building model. Instead, structural engineers usually set up a structural model that is independent from the building model and consists of mechanical models of reduced dimension. An automatic model generation, which would be valuable in case of model revisions is therefore not possible. This can be overcome by a volumetric formulation of the problem. A recent approach employed the p-version of the finite element method to this problem. This method, in conjunction with a volumetric formulation is suited to simulate the structural behaviour of both „thick“ solid bodies and thin-walled structures. However, there remains a notable discretization error in the numerical models. This paper therefore proposes a new approach for overcoming this situation. It sugggests the combination of the Isogeometric analysis together with the volumetric models in order to integrate the structural design into the digital, building model-centered planning process and reduce the discretization error. The concept of the isogeometric analysis consists, roughly, in the application of NURBS functions to represent the geometry and the shape functions of the elements. These functions possess some beneficial properties regarding numerical simulation. Their use, however, leads to some intricacies related to the setup of the stiffness matrix. This paper describes some of these properties.

Buildings can be divided into various types and described by a huge number of parameters. Within the life cycle of a building, especially during the design and construction phases, a lot of engineers with different points of view, proprietary applications and data formats are involved. The collaboration of all participating engineers is characterised by a high amount of communication. Due to these aspects, a homogeneous building model for all engineers is not feasible. The status quo of civil engineering is the segmentation of the complete model into partial models. Currently, the interdependencies of these partial models are not in the focus of available engineering solutions. This paper addresses the problem of coupling partial models in civil engineering. According to the state-of-the-art, applications and partial models are formulated by the object-oriented method. Although this method solves basic communication problems like subclass coupling directly it was found that many relevant coupling problems remain to be solved. Therefore, it is necessary to analyse and classify the relevant coupling types in building modelling. Coupling in computer science refers to the relationship between modules and their mutual interaction and can be divided into different coupling types. The coupling types differ on the degree by which the coupled modules rely upon each other. This is exemplified by a general reference example from civil engineering. A uniform formulation of coupling patterns is described analogously to design patterns, which are a common methodology in software engineering. Design patterns are templates for describing a general reusable solution to a commonly occurring problem. A template is independent of the programming language and the operating system. These coupling patterns are selected according to the specific problems of building modelling. A specific meta-model for coupling problems in civil engineering is introduced. In our meta-model the coupling patterns are a semantic description of a specific coupling design.

By the use of numerical methods and the rapid development of computer technology in the recent years, a large variety, complexity, refinement and capability of partial models have been achieved. This can be noticed in the evaluation of the reliability of structures, e.g. the increased use of spatial structural systems. For the different fields of civil engineering, well developed partial models already exist. Because these partial models are most often used separately, the general view is not entirely illustrated. Until now, there has been no common methodology for evaluating the efficiency of models; the trust in the prediction of a special engineering model has generally relied on the engineer’s experience. In this paper the basics of evaluation of simple models and coupled partial models of frame structures will be discussed using sustainable numerical methods. Furthermore, quality classes (levels) of design tasks will be defined based on their practical relevance. In addition, analysis methods will be systemized. After analysis of different published assessment methods, it may be noted, that the Efficiency Indicator Method (EWM) is most suitable for the observed evaluation problem. Therefore, the EWM was modified to the Model Efficiency Analysis (MEA) for the purpose of a holistic evaluation. The criteria are characterized by two groups, benefit and expenditure, and it is possible by calculating the quotient (benefit/expenditure) to make a statement about the efficiency of the observed models. Presently, the expenditure value is not a subject of investigation, and so the model efficiency is calculated only by the benefit value. This paper also contains the associated criteria catalog, different normalization methods, as well as weighting possibilities.

In this paper the influence of changes in the mean wind velocity, the wind profile power-law coefficient, the drag coefficient of the terrain and the structural stiffness are investigated on different complex structural models. This paper gives a short introduction to wind profile models and to the approach by Davenport A. G. to compute the structural reaction of wind induced vibrations. Firstly with help of a simple example (a skyscraper) this approach is shown. Using this simple example gives the reader the possibility to study the variance differences when changing one of the above mentioned parameters on this very easy example and see the influence of different complex structural models on the result. Furthermore an approach for estimation of the needed discretization level is given. With the help of this knowledge the structural model design methodology can be base on deeper understanding of the different behavior of the single models.

CONSTITUTIVE MODELS FOR SUBSOIL IN THE CONTEXT OF STRUCTURAL ANALYSIS IN CONSTRUCTION ENGINEERING
(2010)

Parameters of constitutive models are obtained generally comparing the results of forward numerical simulations to measurement data. Mostly the parameter values are varied by trial-and-error in order to reach an improved fit and obtain plausible results. However, the description of complex soil behavior requires advanced constitutive models where the rising complexity of these models mainly increases the number of unknown constitutive parameters. Thus an efficient identification "by hand" becomes quite difficult for most practical geotechnical problems. The main focus of this article is on finding a vector of parameters in a given search space which minimizes discrepancy between measurements and the associated numerical result. Classically, the parameter values are estimated from laboratory tests on small samples (triaxial tests or oedometer tests). For this purpose an automatic population-based approach is present to determine the material parameters for reconstituted and natural Bothkennar Clay. After the identification a statistical assessment is carried out of numerical results to evaluate different constitutive models. On the other side a geotechnical problem, stone columns under an embankment, is treated in a well instrumented field trial in Klagenfurt, Austria. For the identification purpose there are measurements from multilevel-piezometers, multilevel-extensometers and horizontal inclinometer. Based on the simulation of the stone columns in a FE-Model the identification of the constitutive parameters is similar to the experimental tests by minimizing the absolute error between measurement and numerical curves.

There are many different approaches to simulate the mechanical behavior of RC−Frames with masonry infills. In this paper, selected modeling techniques for masonry infills and reinforced concrete frame members will be discussed − stressing the attention on the damaging effects of the individual members and the entire system under quasi−static horizontal loading. The effect of the infill walls on the surrounding frame members is studied using equivalent strut elements. The implemented model consider in−plane failure modes for the infills, such as bed joint sliding and corner crushing. These frame member models differ with respect to their stress state. Finally, examples are provided and compared with experimental data from a real size test executed on a three story RC−Frame with and without infills. The quality of the model is evaluated on the basis of load−displacement relationships as well as damage progression.