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TitleAn integrated framework for multi-criteria optimization of thin concrete shells at early design stages
Author(s)Gomes, Carlos
Parente, Manuel
Azenha, Miguel
Lino, José Carlos
KeywordsThin concrete shells
Generative algorithms
Issue date2018
JournalAdvanced Engineering Informatics
Abstract(s)Thin shells are crucially dependent on their shape in order to obtain proper structural performance. In this context, the optimal shape will guarantee performance and safety requirements, while minimizing the use of materials, as well as construction/maintenance costs. Thin shell design is a team-based, multidisciplinary, and iterative process, which requires a high level of interaction between the various parties involved, especially between the Architecture and Engineering teams. As a result of technological development, novel concepts and tools become available to support this process. On the one hand, concepts like Integrated Project Delivery (IPD) show the potential to have a high impact on multidisciplinary environments such as the one in question, supporting the early decision-making process with the availability of as much information as possible. On the other hand, optimization techniques and tools should be highlighted, as they fit the needs and requirements of both the shell shape definition process and the IPD concept. These can be used not only to support advanced design stages, but also to facilitate the initial formulation of shape during the early interactions between architect and structural engineer from an IPD point of view. This paper proposes a methodology aimed at enhancing the interactive and iterative process associated with the early stages of thin shell design, supported by an integrated framework. The latter is based on several tools, namely Rhinoceros 3D, Grasshopper, and Robot Structural Analysis. In order to achieve full integration of the support tools, a custom devised module was developed, so as to allow interoperability between Grasshopper and Robot Structural Analysis. The system resorts to various technologies targeted at improving the shell shape definition process, such as formfinding techniques, parametric and generative models, as well as shape optimization techniques that leverage on multi criteria evolutionary algorithms. The proposed framework is implemented in a set of fictitious scenarios, in which the best thin reinforced concrete shell structures are sought according to given design requirements. Results stemming from this implementation emphasize its interoperability, flexibility, and capability to promote interaction between the elements of the design team, ultimately outputting a set of diverse and creative shell shapes, and thus supporting the pre-design process.
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Appears in Collections:ISISE - Artigos em Revistas Internacionais

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