An expert system on design of liquid-retaining structures with blackboard architecture

Kwok Wing Chau, F. Albermani

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


The design of liquid-retaining structures involves many decisions to be made by the designer based on rules of thumb, heuristics, judgement, codes of practice and previous experience. Structural design problems are often ill structured and there is a need to develop programming environments that can incorporate engineering judgement along with algorithmic tools. Recent developments in artificial intelligence have made it possible to develop an expert system that can provide expert advice to the user in the selection of design criteria and design parameters. This paper introduces the development of an expert system in the design of liquid-retaining structures using blackboard architecture. An expert system shell, Visual Rule Studio, is employed to facilitate the development of this prototype system. It is a coupled system combining symbolic processing with traditional numerical processing. The expert system developed is based on British Standards Code of Practice BS8007. Explanations are made to assist inexperienced designers or civil engineering students to learn how to design liquid-retaining structures effectively and sustainably in their design practices. The use of this expert system in disseminating heuristic knowledge and experience to practitioners and engineering students is discussed.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)183-191
Number of pages9
JournalExpert Systems
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sep 2004


  • Blackboard architecture
  • British Standards
  • Expert system
  • Liquid-retaining structures
  • Structural design

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Control and Systems Engineering
  • Theoretical Computer Science
  • Computational Theory and Mathematics
  • Artificial Intelligence

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