A probabilistic formulation to assess the slopes safety under the hazard of strong storms is presented and illustrated through a slope in Mexico. The formulation is based on the classical safety factor (SF) used in practice to appraise the slope stability, but it is introduced the treatment of uncertainties, and the slope failure probability is calculated as the probability that SF<1. As the main hazard is the rainfall on the area, statistics of rainfall intensity and duration are considered and modeled with an exponential distribution. The expected life-cycle cost is assessed by considering a monetary value on the slope failure consequences. Alternative mitigation measures are simulated, and the formulation is used to get the measures driving to the optimal one (minimum life-cycle costs). For the example, the optimal mitigation measure is the reduction on the slope inclination angle.
Retaining slope structures are increasingly considered in geotechnical engineering projects due to extensive urban cities growth. These kinds of engineering constructions may present instabilities over the time and may require reinforcement or even rebuilding of the structure. In this context, statistical analysis is an important tool for decision making regarding retaining structures. This study approaches the failure probability of the construction of a retaining wall over the debris of an old and collapsed one. The new solution’s extension length will be of approximately 350 m and will be located over the margins of the Lake Paranoá, Brasilia, in the capital of Brazil. The building process must also account for the utilization of the ruins as a caisson. A series of in situ and laboratory experiments defined local soil strength parameters. A Standard Penetration Test (SPT) defined the in situ soil stratigraphy. Also, the parameters obtained were verified using soil data from a collection of masters and doctoral works from the University of Brasília, which is similar to the local soil. Initial studies show that the concrete wall is the proper solution for this case, taking into account the technical, economic and deterministic analysis. On the other hand, in order to better analyze the statistical significance of the factor-of-safety factors obtained, a Monte Carlo analysis was performed for the concrete wall and two more initial solutions. A comparison between the statistical and risk results generated for the different solutions indicated that a Gabion solution would better fit the financial and technical feasibility of the project.
Probabilistic risk analysis models are used to provide a better understanding of the reliability and structural failure of works, including when calculating the stability of large structures to a major risk in the event of an accident or breakdown. This work is interested in the study of the probability of failure of concrete dams through the application of reliability analysis methods including the methods used in engineering. It is in our case, the use of level 2 methods via the study limit state. Hence, the probability of product failures is estimated by analytical methods of the type first order risk method (FORM) and the second order risk method (SORM). By way of comparison, a level three method was used which generates a full analysis of the problem and involves an integration of the probability density function of random variables extended to the field of security using the Monte Carlo simulation method. Taking into account the change in stress following load combinations: normal, exceptional and extreme acting on the dam, calculation of the results obtained have provided acceptable failure probability values which largely corroborate the theory, in fact, the probability of failure tends to increase with increasing load intensities, thus causing a significant decrease in strength, shear forces then induce a shift that threatens the reliability of the structure by intolerable values of the probability of product failures. Especially, in case the increase of uplift in a hypothetical default of the drainage system.
Formation of tensile cracks in concrete slabs of rigid pavement can be (among others) the initiation point of the other, more serious failures which can ultimately lead to complete degradation of the concrete slab and thus the whole pavement. Two measures can be used for reliability assessment of this phenomenon - the probability of failure and/or the reliability index. Different methods can be used for their calculation. The simple ones are called moment methods and simulation techniques. Two methods - FOSM Method and Simple Random Sampling Method - are verified and their comparison is performed. The influence of information about the probability distribution and the statistical parameters of input variables as well as of the limit state function on the calculated reliability index and failure probability are studied in three points on the lower surface of concrete slabs of the older type of rigid pavement formerly used in the Czech Republic.
An advanced Monte Carlo simulation method, called Subset Simulation (SS) for the time-dependent reliability prediction for underground pipelines has been presented in this paper. The SS can provide better resolution for low failure probability level with efficient investigating of rare failure events which are commonly encountered in pipeline engineering applications. In SS method, random samples leading to progressive failure are generated efficiently and used for computing probabilistic performance by statistical variables. SS gains its efficiency as small probability event as a product of a sequence of intermediate events with larger conditional probabilities. The efficiency of SS has been demonstrated by numerical studies and attention in this work is devoted to scrutinise the robustness of the SS application in pipe reliability assessment. It is hoped that the development work can promote the use of SS tools for uncertainty propagation in the decision-making process of underground pipelines network reliability prediction.
Protection system hidden failures have been identified as one of the main causes of system cascading collapse resulting to power system instability. In this paper, a systematic approach is presented in order to identify the probability of a system cascading collapse by taking into consideration the effect of protection system hidden failure. This includes the accurate calculation of the probability of hidden failure as it will provide significant impinge on the findings of the probability of system cascading collapse. The probability of a system cascading collapse is then used to identify the initial tripping of sensitive transmission lines which will contribute to a critical system cascading collapse. Based on the results obtained from this study, it is important to decide on the accurate value of the hidden failure probability as it will affect the probability of a system cascading collapse.