Optimal design of deteriorating structural systems
ABSTRACT: The optimum structural design is generally aimed to find the minimum cost solution under prescribed performance requirements. In the classical approach, the time evolution of the structural performance induced by the progressive deterioration of the system properties is not properly considered, since the attention is focused on the initial configuration only, in which the structure is fully intact. However, this approach is not consistent with the actual nature of the design problem, which should lead to concept structures able to comply with the desired performance not only at the initial time of construction, but also during the whole expected service lifetime, despite of the deteriorating effects induced by the unavoidable sources of mechanical damage. In addition, the effects of maintenance interventions on the actual cost optimality of the selected design need to be consistently accounted for by a proper formulation of the maintenance cost.