student profile: Ms Maggie Wang


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Thesis work

Thesis title: A New Framework of Time-dependent Structural Reliability

Supervisors: Kim RASMUSSEN , Hao ZHANG

Thesis abstract:

Civil infrastructure facilities are often expected to severe operating or environmental conditions during their service life, which are responsible for the deterioration of structural strengthen and stiffness with time. The failure of important structures, caused by either environmental or anthropogenic extreme events, may lead to substantial economic losses to the facility owner or occupant and further a ripple effect in the surrounding community. Recently, public awareness has been raised significantly regarding infrastructure performance in the context of community resilience, for which the research community and engineers are seeking advanced implementations for building and construction practice. With this regard, reliability analysis, which takes into account uncertainties, is considered to be the best tool for modern structures evaluation.
In the reliability assessment of structures, a deterioration model is one of the most important factors. The current deterioration models can be categorised into two forms: one is probabilistic deterioration model which is based on the probability theory and model the deterioration as a stochastic process, while the other is physics-based models, such as deterministic models of corrosion for RC and steel structures. The probabilistic deterioration model is a pure probability model which not consider the mechanism of deterioration, while deterministic models of physics-based models have neglected the high uncertainty in the process of deterioration. The deterioration of a structure is a stochastic process marked by high uncertainty. These uncertainties can be categorised into two types: one is inherently random (Aleatory) which arises from the lack of knowledge and cannot be reduced, the other arises from a lack of knowledge (Epistemic) which can be reduced with additional data or better modelling techniques. Due to the limitation of real-world data, the imprecise probability theory can be used to quantify the epistemic uncertainty.
The focus problem for this research is to develop an efficient framework of uncertainty analysis for assessing the deterioration structures based on deterioration mechanism which considers both aleatory and epistemic uncertainties.

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