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An ontology-based holistic approach for multi-objective sustainable structural design

Hou, Shangjie 2015. An ontology-based holistic approach for multi-objective sustainable structural design. PhD Thesis, Cardiff University.
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Building construction industry has significant impact on sustainability. The construction, operation and maintenance of buildings account for approximately 50% of global energy usage and anthropogenic greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. In recent years, the embodied energy and carbon are identified increasingly important in terms of sustainability throughout building life cycle. Incorporation of sustainable development in building structural design becomes undoubtedly crucial. The effective building design requires smart and holistic tools that can process multi-objective and inter-connected domain knowledge to provide genuine sustainable buildings. With the advancement of information and communication technologies, various methods and techniques have been applied to accomplish the multiple objectives of sustainable development in building design. One of the most successful approaches is building information modelling (BIM), which requires further enhancement of interoperability. The emergence of Semantic Web technology provides more opportunity to improve the information modelling, knowledge management and system integration. The research presented in this thesis investigates how ontology and Semantic Web rules can be used in a knowledge-based holistic system, in order to integrate information about structural design and sustainability, and facilitate decision-making in design process by recommending appropriate solutions for different use cases. A research prototype namely OntoSCS incorporating OWL ontology and SWRL rules has been developed and tested in typical structural design cases. The holistic approach considers five inter-connected dimensions of sustainability, including structural feasibility, embodied energy and carbon, cost, durability and safety. In addition, the selection of structural material supplier and criteria in sustainability assessment are taken into account as well. This research concludes that the Semantic Web technology can be applied to structural design at early stage to provide multi-criteria optimised solution. The methodology and framework employed in this study can be further adapted as a generic multi-criteria and holistic decision support system for other domains in construction sector.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Date Type: Publication
Status: Unpublished
Schools: Engineering
Subjects: T Technology > TD Environmental technology. Sanitary engineering
T Technology > TH Building construction
Uncontrolled Keywords: Ontology; Building Information Modelling (BIM); Sustainability; Integrated System; The Semantic Web; Holistic Building Structural Design.
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 23 May 2016
Last Modified: 15 Nov 2016 05:51

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