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Optimum Design Of Reinforced Concrete Foundations

[ Vol. 15 , Issue. 3 ]


Osama Bedair*   Pages 277 - 286 ( 10 )


Background: Optimization of reinforced concrete foundation is a challenging problem due to the interaction between the design variables and design constraints. Classical design methods may overestimate the size of the foundation, thus leading to excessive cost. By using current advances in computer technologies and numerical optimization procedures, it is possible to find the optimum combinations of foundations design parameters that minimize the cost.

Objectives: The paper presents a numerical strategy to optimize the design of the reinforced concrete foundation.

Methods: The cost function is first derived in terms of the foundation design parameters. Mathematical programming technique is utilized to minimize the cost function. Design constraints are used against soil bearing capacity, concrete shear strength, flexural strength, and column bearing. Simplified analytical models are developed to idealize the soil stress distribution. The numerical procedure is then automated in a computer Program “OSFD” to perform sensitivity analysis and provide guidelines that can be utilized in practice.

Results: Design examples are provided to illustrate the efficiency of the optimization procedure. Results are compared with existing common design procedures, commercial software and design handbooks that are available in practice.

Conclusion: The described procedure is very cost-effective and can be utilized by practicing engineers in the industry to optimize the design of the reinforced concrete foundations.


Structural optimization, concrete foundation, footings, mathematical programming, reinforced, design procedures.


OB Engineering Ltd., 249 Craig Henry Drive, Ottawa, Ontario, K2G 5V2

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