Load-settlement response of a footing over buried conduit in a sloping terrain: A numerical experiment-based artificial intelligent approach
School of Engineering
Edith Cowan University
Higher Education Commission, Pakistan
Settlement estimation of a footing located over a buried conduit in a sloping terrain is a challenging task for practicing civil/geotechnical engineers. In the recent past, the advent of machine learning technology has made many traditional approaches antiquated. This paper investigates the viability, development, implementation, and comprehensive comparison of five artificial intelligence-based machine learning models, namely multilayer perceptron, Gaussian processes regression, lazy K-Star, decision table, and random forest (RF) to estimate the settlement of footing located over a buried conduit within a soil slope. The pertaining dataset of 3600 observations was obtained by conducting large-scale numerical simulations via the finite element modeling framework. After executing the feature selection technique that is correlation-based subset selection, the applied load, total unit weight of soil, constrained modulus of soil, slope angle ratio, hoop stiffness of conduit, bending stiffness of conduit, burial depth of conduit, and crest distance of footing were utilized as the influence parameters for estimating and forecasting the settlement. The predictive strength and accuracy of all models mentioned supra were evaluated using several well-established statistical indices such as Pearson’s correlation coefficient (r), root mean square error (RMSE), Nash–Sutcliffe efficiency (NSE), scatter index (SI), and relative percentage difference (RPD). The results showed that among all the models employed in this study, the multilayer perceptron model has shown better results with r, RMSE, NSE, SI, and RPD values of (0.977, 0.298, 0.937, 0.31, and 4.31) and (0.974, 0.323, 0.928, 0.44, and 3.75) for training and testing dataset, respectively. The sensitivity analysis revealed that all the selected parameters play an important role in determining the output value. However, the applied load, constrained modulus, unit weight, slope angle ratio, and hoop stiffness have the highest strength with the relative importance of 18.4%, 16.3%, and 15.3%, 13.8%, 11.4%, respectively. Finally, the model was translated into a functional relationship for easy implementation and can prove useful for practitioners and researchers in predicting the settlement of a footing located over a buried conduit in a sloping terrain.