Reliability Analysis of Slope Stability by Advanced Simulation with Spreadsheet

Project: Research

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The reluctance of geotechnical practitioners to apply reliability methods to slope stability analysis is attributed, among other factors, to the sophistication/lack of robustness (e.g., problem-specific scope) of advanced probabilistic assessment/modelling methods and limited published studies illustrating the implementation. From an implementation point of view, the less information required from the engineer regarding the probabilistic assessment or reliability computational algorithm, the smaller hurdle the engineer will face in properly using the algorithm, and the more likely it will be implemented. This research project aims to develop a VBA software package that implements an advanced Monte Carlo method called Subset Simulation in the ubiquitous EXCEL spreadsheet to provide better resolution at the distribution tail (i.e., low failure probability levels). The major research components include VBA code development for deterministic slope stability analysis, uncertainty modeling in slope stability problem and implementation of Subset Simulation algorithm and illustration of the VBA software application to probabilistic failure analysis of the Shek Kip Mei Landslide of 25 August 1999 in Hong Kong. The deterministic analysis of slope stability and uncertainty modeling are deliberately decoupled so that they can be performed separately by personnel with different expertise and in a parallel fashion (i.e., minimum information is required from the engineer regarding the reliability computational algorithm). The research outcome will be applicable to slope stability analysis and mitigation of landslide risks in Hong Kong and around the world.


Project number7002455
Grant typeSRG
Effective start/end date1/04/0925/05/11