Generalized Reliability Assessment and Reliability-Based Design for Structural Safety and serviceability


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Title: Generalized Reliability Assessment and Reliability-Based Design for Structural Safety and serviceability

Author(s): Irfan A. Alvi and bilal M. Ayyub

Publication: Special Publication

Volume: 133


Appears on pages(s): 133-158

Keywords: beams (supports); calibrating; cracking (fracturing); damage; deflection; ductility; failure; floors; optimization; performance; probability theory; reinforced concrete; reliability; safety; standards; serviceability; slabs; strength; structural analysis;

Date: 9/1/1992

In virtually all areas of structural engineering, including the increasingly well-known area of structural reliability assessment, it is commonly assumed that failures will occur suddenly and instantaneously in given failure modes. This assumption affords a valuable simplification of complex real-world problems. However, many failure modes do not obey this assumption, including most serviceability failure modes, strength failure modes of ductile component and/or redundant systems, and failure modes based on cumulative damage. For these cases, a formulation is required with which the transition from complete survival to complete failure can be modeled as being gradual and continuous, and comprised of partial failure levels. This paper proposes such a formulation along with corresponding methodologies for structural reliability assessment and reliability-based design. Various statistical and entropy-based measures which can be used to help characterize the results of the structural reliability assessment are also suggested. Application of the proposed structural reliability assessment and reliability-based design methodologies is illustrated with an example problem involving deflection failure of a reinforced concrete beam. Some potential applications of the proposed methodologies include probabilistic design and code calibration for failure modes modeled as having gradual and continuous failure transitions.