Computer-Based Environment for Integrated Tunneling Design and Constructionby Guillermo F. Salazar, Worcester Polytechnic Inst, Worcester, United States,
David C. Brown, Worcester Polytechnic Inst, Worcester, United States,
Herbert H. Einstein, Worcester Polytechnic Inst, Worcester, United States,
Abstract: The MIT tunneling group has developed, over the past decade, a number of decision support tools for the geologist and engineer, planner and designer, owner and contractor involved in tunnel design and construction. These computer based tools can be used in the planning and exploration stage of a project, in predesign and design, in construction planning and during construction. These tools are based on probabilistic models allowing the user to deal explicitly with uncertainty in the design and construction of tunneling projects. These tools were originally conceived in an integrated fashion. Therefore, they can be used individually or in combination. However, they were not originally implemented in the computer as a fully integrated set of tools but rather as a set of independent application programs. This makes their combined use rather inconvenient requiring constnt and cumbersome manipulation of data files, Also, the user has to spend time and effort in learning the specific ways to deal with each one of these programs. The rapid growth in computer technology experienced in the last years has emphasized the 'friendliness' or ease of use of computer programs. It has also provided very powerful processors and means for massive storage of information. These advances in the technology make it easier to integrate the previously developed set of tools. This option also poses a new challenge since the system designer must think of new ways in which the traditionally separate functions of design and construction will be conducted in an integrated environment.
Subject Headings: Construction management | Tunneling | Decision support systems | Construction equipment | Computer software | Probability
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