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- Computer Science Models in Engineering; Multiscale and Multiphysical Models; Scientific Computing (74) (remove)

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- 2010 (74) (remove)

Information technology plays a key role in the everyday operation of buildings and campuses. Many proprietary technologies and methodologies can assist in effective Building Performance Monitoring (BPM) and efficient managing of building resources. The integration of related tools like energy simulator packages, facility, energy and building management systems, and enterprise resource planning systems is of benefit to BPM. However, the complexity to integrating such domain specific systems prevents their common usage. Service Oriented Architecture (SOA) has been deployed successfully in many large multinational companies to create integrated and flexible software systems, but so far this methodology has not been applied broadly to the field of BPM. This paper envisions that SOA provides an effective integration framework for BPM. Service oriented architecture for the ITOBO framework for sustainable and optimised building operation is proposed and an implementation for a building performance monitoring system is introduced.

A four-node quadrilateral shell element with smoothed membrane-bending based on Mindlin-Reissner theory is proposed. The element is a combination of a plate bending and membrane element. It is based on mixed interpolation where the bending and membrane stiffness matrices are calculated on the boundaries of the smoothing cells while the shear terms are approximated by independent interpolation functions in natural coordinates. The proposed element is robust, computationally inexpensive and free of locking. Since the integration is done on the element boundaries for the bending and membrane terms, the element is more accurate than the MITC4 element for distorted meshes. This will be demonstrated for several numerical examples.

A UNIFIED APPROACH FOR THE TREATMENT OF SOME HIGHER DIMENSIONAL DIRAC TYPE EQUATIONS ON SPHERES
(2010)

Using Clifford analysis methods, we provide a unified approach to obtain explicit solutions of some partial differential equations combining the n-dimensional Dirac and Euler operators, including generalizations of the classical time-harmonic Maxwell equations. The obtained regular solutions show strong connections between hypergeometric functions and homogeneous polynomials in the kernel of the Dirac operator.

The uncertainty existing in the construction industry is bigger than in other industries. Consequently, most construction projects do not go totally as planned. The project management plan needs therefore to be adapted repeatedly within the project lifecycle to suit the actual project conditions. Generally, the risks of change in the project management plan are difficult to be identified in advance, especially if these risks are caused by unexpected events such as human errors or changes in the client preferences. The knowledge acquired from different resources is essential to identify the probable deviations as well as to find proper solutions to the faced change risks. Hence, it is necessary to have a knowledge base that contains known solutions for the common exceptional cases that may cause changes in each construction domain. The ongoing research work presented in this paper uses the process modeling technique of Event-driven Process Chains to describe different patterns of structure changes in the schedule networks. This results in several so called “change templates”. Under each template different types of change risk/ response pairs can be categorized and stored in a knowledge base. This knowledge base is described as an ontology model populated with reference construction process data. The implementation of the developed approach can be seen as an iterative scheduling cycle that will be repeated within the project lifecycle as new change risks surface. This can help to check the availability of ready solutions in the knowledge base for the situation at hand. Moreover, if the solution is adopted, CPSP, “Change Project Schedule Plan „a prototype developed for the purpose of this research work, will be used to make the needed structure changes of the schedule network automatically based on the change template. What-If scenarios can be implemented using the CPSP prototype in the planning phase to study the effect of specific situations without endangering the success of the project objectives. Hence, better designed and more maintainable project schedules can be achieved.

We present recent developments of adaptive wavelet solvers for elliptic eigenvalue problems. We describe the underlying abstract iteration scheme of the preconditioned perturbed iteration. We apply the iteration to a simple model problem in order to identify the main ideas which a numerical realization of the abstract scheme is based upon. This indicates how these concepts carry over to wavelet discretizations. Finally we present numerical results for the Poisson eigenvalue problem on an L-shaped domain.

The application of a recent method using formal power series is proposed. It is based on a new representation for solutions of Sturm-Liouville equations. This method is used to calculate the transmittance and reflectance coefficients of finite inhomogeneous layers with high accuracy and efficiency. Tailoring the refraction index profile defining the inhomogeneous media it is possible to develop very important applications such as optical filters. A number of profiles were evaluated and then some of them selected in order to perform an improvement of their characteristics via the modification of their profiles.

In the context of finite element model updating using vibration test data, natural frequencies and mode shapes are used as validation criteria. Consequently, the order of natural frequencies and mode shapes is important. As only limited spatial information is available and noise is present in the measurements, the automatic selection of the most likely numerical mode shape corresponding to a measured mode shape is a difficult task. The most common criterion to indicate corresponding mode shapes is the modal assurance criterion. Unfortunately, this criterion fails in certain cases. In this paper, the pure mathematical modal assurance criterion will be enhanced by additional physical information of the numerical model in terms of modal strain energies. A numerical example and a benchmark study with real measured data are presented to show the advantages of the enhanced energy based criterion in comparison to the traditional modal assurance criterion.

Geotechnical constructions are sophisticated structures due to the non-linear soil behaviour and the complex soil-structure interaction, which entails great exigencies on the liable engineer during the design process. The process can be schematised as a difficult and, depending on the opportunities and skills of the processor more or less innovative, creative and heuristic search for one or a multiple of defined objectives under given boundary conditions. Wholistic approaches including numerical optimisation which support the constructing engineer in this task do not currently exist. Abstract problem formulation is not state of the art; commonly parameter studies are bounded by computational effort. Thereby potential regarding cost effectiveness, construction time, load capacity and/or serviceability are often used insufficiently. This paper describes systematic approaches for comprehensive optimisation of selected geotechnical constructions like combined pile raft foundations and quay wall structures. Several optimisation paradigms like the mono- and the multi-objective optimisation are demonstrated and their use for a more efficient design concerning various intentions is shown in example. The optimisation is implemented by using Evolutionary Algorithms. The applicability to geotechnical real world problems including nonlinearities, discontinuities and multi-modalities is shown. The routines are adapted to common problems and coupled with conventional analysis procedures as well as with numerical calculation software based on the finite element method. Numerical optimisation of geotechnical design using efficient algorithms is able to deliver highly effective solutions after investing more effort into the parameterization of the problem. Obtained results can be used for realizing different constructions near the stability limit, visualizing the sensitivity regarding the construction parameters or simply procuring more effective solutions.

Models in the context of engineering can be classified in process based and data based models. Whereas the process based model describes the problem by an explicit formulation, the data based model is often used, where no such mapping can be found due to the high complexity of the problem. Artificial Neuronal Networks (ANN) is a data based model, which is able to “learn“ a mapping from a set of training patterns. This paper deals with the application of ANN in time dependent bathymetric models. A bathymetric model is a geometric representation of the sea bed. Typically, a bathymetry is been measured and afterwards described by a finite set of measured data. Measuring at different time steps leads to a time dependent bathymetric model. To obtain a continuous surface, the measured data has to be interpolated by some interpolation method. Unlike the explicitly given interpolation methods, the presented time dependent bathymetric model using an ANN trains the approximated surface in space and time in an implicit way. The ANN is trained by topographic measured data, which consists of the location (x,y) and time t. In other words the ANN is trained to reproduce the mapping h = f(x,y,t) and afterwards it is able to approximate the topographic height for a given location and date. In a further step, this model is extended to take meteorological parameters into account. This leads to a model of more predictive character.

The changed global security situation in the last eight years has shown the importance of emergency management plans in public buildings. Therefore, the use of computer simulators for surveying fire safety design and evacuation process is increasing. The aim of these simulators is to have more realistic evacuation simulations. The challenge is, firstly, to realize the virtual simulation environment based on geometrical and material boundary conditions, secondly, to considerate the mutual interaction effects between different parameters and, finally, to have a realistic visualization of the simulated results. In order to carry out this task, an especial new software method on a BIM-platform has to be developed which can integrate all required simulations and will be able to have an immersive output BIM ISEE (Immersive Safety Engineering Environment). The new BIM-ISEE will integrate the Fire Dynamics Simulator (FDS) for fire and evacuation simulation in the Autodesk Revit which is a BIM-platform and will represent the simulation results in the immersive virtual environment at the institute (CES-Lab). With BIM-ISEE the fire safety engineer will be able to obtain more realistic visualizations in the immersive environment, to modify his concept more effectively, to evaluate the simulation results more accurately and to visualize the various simulation results. It can also give the rescue staff the opportunity to perform and evaluate emergency evacuation trainings.

The main aim of the research project in progress is to develop virtual models as tools to support decision-making in the planning of construction maintenance. The virtual models gives the capacity to allow them to transmit, visually and interactively, information related to the physical behaviour of materials, components of given infrastructures, defined as a function of the time variable. The interactive application allows decisions to be made on conception options in the definition of plans for maintenance, conservation or rehabilitation. The first virtual prototype that is now in progress concerns just lamps. It allows the examination of the physical model, visualizing, for each element modelled in 3D and linked to a database, the corresponding technical information concerned with the wear and tear aspects of the material, calculated for that period of time. In addition, the analysis of solutions for repair work or substitution and inherent cost are predicted, the results being obtained interactively and visualized in the virtual environment itself. The aim is that the virtual model should be able to be applied directly over the 3D models of new constructions, in situations of rehabilitation. The practical usage of these models is directed, then, towards supporting decision-making in the conception phase and the planning of maintenance. In further work other components will be analysed and incorporated into the virtual system.

Tests on Polymer Modified Cement Concrete (PCC) have shown significant large creep deformation. The reasons for that as well as additional material phenomena are explained in the following paper. Existing creep models developed for standard concrete are studied to determine the time-dependent deformations of PCC. These models are: model B3 by Bažant and Bajewa, the models according to Model Code 90 and ACI 209 as well as model GL2000 by Gardner and Lockman. The calculated creep strains are compared to existing experimental data of PCC and the differences are pointed out. Furthermore, an optimization of the model parameters is performed to fit the models to the experimental data to achieve a better model prognosis.

In order to model and simulate collapses of large scale complex structures, a user-friendly and high performance software system is essential. Because a large number of simulation experiments have to be performed, therefore, next to an appropriate simulation model and high performance computing, efficient interactive control and visualization capabilities of model parameters and simulation results are crucial. To this respect, this contribution is concerned with advancements of the software system CADCE (Computer Aided Demolition using Controlled Explosives) that is extended under particular consideration of computational steering concepts. Thereby, focus is placed on problems and solutions for the collapse simulation of real world large scale complex structures. The simulation model applied is based on a multilevel approach embedding finite element models on a local as well as a near field length scale, and multibody models on a global scale. Within the global level simulation, relevant effects of the local and the near field scale, such as fracture and failure processes of the reinforced concrete parts, are approximated by means of tailor-made multibody subsystems. These subsystems employ force elements representing nonlinear material characteristics in terms of force/displacement relationships that, in advance, are determined by finite element analysis. In particular, enhancements concerning the efficiency of the multibody model and improvements of the user interaction are presented that are crucial for the capability of the computational steering. Some scenarios of collapse simulations of real world large scale structures demonstrate the implementation of the above mentioned approaches within the computational steering.

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.

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.

CRITICAL STRESS ASSESSMENT IN ANGLE TO GUSSET PLATE BOLTED CONNECTION BY SIMPLIFIED FEM MODELLING
(2010)

Simplified modelling of friction grip bolted connections of steel member – to – gusset plate is often applied in engineering practise. The paper deals with the simplification of pre-tensioned bolt model and simplification of load transfer within connection. Influence on normal strain (and thus stress) distribution at critical cross-section is investigated. Laboratory testing of single-angle or double-angle members – to – gusset plates bolted connections were taken as basis for numerical analysis. FE models were created using 1D and 2D elements. Angles and gusset plates were modelled with shell elements. Two methods of modelling of friction grip bolting were considered: bolt-regarding approach with 1D element systems modelling bolts and two variants of bolt-disregarding approach with special constraints over some part of member and gusset plate surfaces in contact: a) constraints over whole area of contact, b) constraints over the area around each bolt shank (“partially tied”). Modelling of friction grip bolted connections using simplified bolt modelling may be effective, especially in the case of analysis concerning elastic range only. In such a case disregarding bolts and replacing them with “partially tied” modelling seems to be more attractive. It is less time-consuming and provides results of similar accuracy in comparison to analysis utilizing simplified bolt modelling.

In nonlinear simulations the loading is, in general, applied in an incremental way. Path-following algorithms are used to trace the equilibrium path during the failure process. Standard displacement controlled solution strategies fail if snap-back phenomena occur. In this contribution, a path-following algorithm based on the dissipation of the inelastic energy is presented which allows for the simulation of snap-backs. Since the constraint is defined in terms of the internal energy, the algorithm is not restricted to continuum damage models. Furthermore, no a priori knowledge about the final damage distribution is required. The performance of the proposed algorithm is illustrated using nonlinear mesoscale simulations.

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.

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.

The present article proposes an alternative way to compute the torsional stiffness based on three-dimensional continuum mechanics instead of applying a specific theory of torsion. A thin, representative beam slice is discretized by solid finite elements. Adequate boundary conditions and coupling conditions are integrated into the numerical model to obtain a proper answer on the torsion behaviour, thus on shear center, shear stress and torsional stiffness. This finite element approach only includes general assumptions of beam torsion which are independent of cross-section geometry. These assumptions essentially are: no in-plane deformation, constant torsion and free warping. Thus it is possible to achieve numerical solutions of high accuracy for arbitrary cross-sections. Due to the direct link to three-dimensional continuum mechanics, it is possible to extend the range of torsion analysis to sections which are composed of different materials or even to heterogeneous beams on a high scale of resolution. A brief study follows to validate the implementation and results are compared to analytical solutions.