Bayesian Modeling Approach for Forecast of Structural Stress Response Using Structural Health Monitoring Data

Hua Ping Wan, Yiqing Ni

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

88 Citations (Scopus)


The advancement in structural health monitoring (SHM) technology has been evolving from monitoring-based diagnosis to monitoring-based prognosis. The structural stress response derived by the measured strain data is increasingly used for structural condition diagnosis and prognosis because it can be directly used to indicate the safety reserve of a structural component or provide information regarding the load-carrying capacity of the whole structure. Therefore, accurate forecasting of structural stress responses is an essential step for the reliable diagnosis and prognosis of structural condition. For a large-scale, complex structure subjected to multisource effects such as live loads and environmental loads, its stress evolution is a typically nonlinear dynamic process. Moreover, the online monitoring-derived stress data extracted from an SHM system are extremely massive. This arouses a strong demand for developing a computationally efficient and accurate method for forecasting structural stress responses. In this work, we propose the use of a Bayesian modeling approach with Gaussian processes (GPs), which allows for probabilistic forecasts of structural stress responses and has great capability of modeling the underlying nonlinear dynamic process. Although powerful for characterizing dynamic nonlinearity of structural stress responses, the conventional GP-based Bayesian modeling approach remains computationally intensive because of the massive stress data increasingly gathered by the monitoring system. We propose a moving window strategy to substantially shrink the size of training data, thus leading to a reduced-order GP model and effectively alleviating the high computational cost. The feasibility of the reduced-order GP-based Bayesian modeling approach is illustrated by using the real-time monitoring-derived stress data acquired from a supertall structure. Its performance is compared with the full GP-based Bayesian approach, and the comparison results indicate that the proposed approach holds higher computational accuracy and efficiency for stress response forecasts than the traditional method.
Original languageEnglish
Article number04018130
JournalJournal of Structural Engineering (United States)
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2018


  • Bayesian modeling
  • Gaussian processes
  • Moving window
  • Stress forecast
  • Structural health monitoring
  • Supertall structure

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Building and Construction
  • Materials Science(all)
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering


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