Improving rockbolt design in tunnels using topology optimization

Publication Type:
Journal Article
International Journal of Geomechanics, 2016, 16 (1)
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© 2015 American Society of Civil Engineers. Finding an optimum reinforcement layout for underground excavation can result in a safer and more economical design, and is therefore highly desirable. Some works in the literature have applied topology optimization in tunnel reinforcement design in which reinforced rock is modeled as homogenized isotropic material. Optimization results, therefore, do not clearly show reinforcement distributions, leading to difficulties in explaining the final outcomes. To overcome this deficiency, a more sophisticated modeling technique in which reinforcements are explicitly modeled as truss elements embedded in rock mass media is used. An optimization algorithm extending the solid isotropic material with penalization method is introduced to seek for an optimal bolt layout. To obtain the stiffest structure with a given amount of reinforced material, external work along the opening is selected as the objective function with a constraint on the volume of reinforcement. The presented technique does not depend on material models used for rock and reinforcements and can be applied to any material model. Nonlinear material behavior of rock and reinforcement is considered in this work. Through solving some typical examples, the proposed approach is proved to enhance the conventional reinforcement design and provide clear and practical reinforcement layouts.
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