FYPs/Thesis/Journal from Higher Education Institutions in Hong Kong


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Date: From


Institution Title Type Date Author(s) Abstract Link
HKUST Automated optimization of steel reinforcement in RC building frames using building information modeling and hybrid genetic algorithm Journal 02/2018 Mangal, M., and Cheng, J.C.P. Design of steel reinforcement is an important and necessary task for designing reinforced concrete (RC) building structures. Currently, steel reinforcement design is performed manually or semi-automatically using computer software such as ETABS, with reference to building codes. These approaches are time consuming and sometimes error-prone. Recent advances in building information modeling (BIM) technology allow digital 3D BIM models to be leveraged for supporting different types of engineering analyses such as structural engineering design. With the aid of BIM technology, steel reinforcement design could be automated for fast, economical and error-free procedures. This paper presents a BIM-based framework using the developed three-stage hybrid genetic algorithm (GA) for automated optimization of steel reinforcement in RC frames. The methodology framework determines the selection and alignment of steel reinforcement bars in an RC building frame for the minimum steel reinforcement area, considering longitudinal tensile, longitudinal compressive and shear steel reinforcement. The first two stages optimize the longitudinal tensile and longitudinal compressive steel reinforcement while the third stage optimizes the shear steel reinforcement. International design code (BS8110) and buildability constraints are considered in the developed optimization framework. A BIM model in Industry Foundation Classes (IFC) is then automatically created to visualize the optimized steel reinforcement design results in 3D thereby facilitating design communication and generation of construction detailing drawings. A three-storey RC building frame is analyzed to check the applicability of the developed framework and its improvement over current design approaches. The results show that the developed methodology framework can minimize the steel reinforcement area quickly and accurately. Link
HKUST Automatic as-built BIM creation of precast concrete bridge deck panels using laser scan data Journal 02/2018 Wang, Q., Sohn, H., and Cheng, J.C.P. Precast concrete bridge deck panels are commonly used for bridge constructions because they enable faster construction and have less impact on traffic flow. The quality of connections between adjacent precast elements must be ensured to guarantee the overall structural integrity of precast systems. Therefore, the dimensional quality of precast concrete panels should be inspected before they are shipped to construction sites for installation. However, current quality inspection of precast concrete elements primarily relies on manual inspection. Furthermore, the as-built dimensions of precast elements are usually stored in paper sheets or Microsoft Excel spreadsheets, making it difficult to visualize and manage the as-built dimensions. This study develops a technique to automatically estimate the dimensions of precast concrete bridge deck panels and create as-built building information modeling (BIM) models to store the real dimensions of the panels. First, the proposed technique conducts scan planning to find the optimal scanner locations for scan data acquisition. Then, the scan data of the target panel are acquired and preprocessed to remove noise data and to register multiple scans in a global coordinate system. From the registered scan data, the as-built geometries of the target panel are estimated. In the last step, an as-built BIM model is created on the basis of the previously estimated geometries. The proposed technique is validated on a laboratory-scale specimen and a full-scale precast concrete bridge deck panel. The experimental results show that the proposed technique can accurately and efficiently estimate the dimensions of full-scale precast concrete bridge deck panels with an accuracy of 3 mm and automatically create as-built BIM models of the panels. Link
HKUST Trends and opportunities of BIM-GIS integration in the architecture, engineering and construction industry: A review from a spatio-temporal statistical perspective Journal 12/2017 Song, Y., Wang, X., Tan, Y., Wu, P., Sutrisna, M., Cheng, J.C.P., et al. The integration of building information modelling (BIM) and geographic information system (GIS) in construction management is a new and fast developing trend in recent years, from research to industrial practice. BIM has advantages on rich geometric and semantic information through the building life cycle, while GIS is a broad field covering geovisualization-based decision making and geospatial modelling. However, most current studies of BIM-GIS integration focus on the integration techniques but lack theories and methods for further data analysis and mathematic modelling. This paper reviews the applications and discusses future trends of BIM-GIS integration in the architecture, engineering and construction (AEC) industry based on the studies of 96 high-quality research articles from a spatio-temporal statistical perspective. The analysis of these applications helps reveal the evolution progress of BIM-GIS integration. Results show that the utilization of BIM-GIS integration in the AEC industry requires systematic theories beyond integration technologies and deep applications of mathematical modeling methods, including spatio-temporal statistical modeling in GIS and 4D/nD BIM simulation and management. Opportunities of BIM-GIS integration are outlined as three hypotheses in the AEC industry for future research on the in-depth integration of BIM and GIS. BIM-GIS integration hypotheses enable more comprehensive applications through the life cycle of AEC projects. Link
HKUST A semi-automated approach to generate 4D/5D BIM models for evaluating different offshore oil and gas platform decommissioning options Journal 07/2017 Cheng, J.C.P., Tan, Y., Song, Y., Liu, X., and Wang, X. Background
Offshore oil and gas platforms generally have a lifetime of 30 to 40 years, and platform decommissioning is a major issue because many of the existing offshore oil and gas platforms are reaching the end of their service life. There are many possible options for decommissioning offshore oil and gas platforms, and each decommissioning option can be implemented using different methods and technologies. Therefore, it is necessary to have a clear understanding and in-depth evaluation of each decommissioning option before commencing platform decommissioning. 4D and 5D building information modeling (BIM) has been commonly used in the building industry to analyze constructability and to evaluate different construction or demolition plans. However, application of BIM in the oil and gas industry, especially for the platform decommissioning process, is still limited.
This paper suggests and demonstrates the application of 4D and 5D BIM technology to simulate various methodologies to realize various selected offshore platform decommissioning options, thereby visualizing and evaluating different options, considering both the time and resources required for decommissioning process. One hundred and seventy-seven offshore platform decommissioning options are summarized in this paper. A new approach to create multiple 4D/5D BIM models in a semi-automated manner for evaluating various scenario options of OOGP decommissioning was proposed to reduce the model creation time as current way of 4D/5D BIM model creation for each OOGP decommissioning option is time consuming.

In the proposed approach, an OOGP BIM model relationship database that contains possible 4D/5D BIM model relationships (i.e. schedules for different decommissioning methods) for different parts of an OOGP was generated. Different OOGP decommissioning options can be simulated and visualized with 4D/5D BIM models created by automatically matching schedules, resources, cost information and 3D BIM models. This paper also presents an illustrative example of the proposed approach, which simulates and evaluates two decommissioning options of a fixed jacket platform, namely Rig-to-Reef and Removal-to-Shore. As compared to the traditional approach of 4D/5D BIM model generation, the proposed semi-automated approach reduces the model generation time by 58.8% in the illustrative example.

The proposed approach of semi-automated 4D/5D BIM model creation can help understand the implication of different decommissioning options as well as applied methods, detecting potential lifting clashes, and reducing 4D/5D BIM model creation time, leading to better planning and execution for the decommissioning of offshore oil and gas platforms. In addition, with the proposed semi-automated approach, the 4D/5D BIM model can be generated in a more efficient manner.
HKUST A BIM-based framework for lift planning in topsides disassembly of offshore oil and gas platforms Journal 03/2017 Tan, Y., Song, Y., Liu, X., Wang, X., and Cheng, J.C.P. Offshore oil and gas platforms (OOGPs) usually have a lifetime of 30–40 years. An increasing number of OOGPs across the world will be retired and decommissioned in the coming decade. Therefore, a safe and efficient approach in planning the disassembly of the topsides of OOGPs is required. One commonly applied disassembly method is reverse installation, which moves the OOGP modules from the platform deck to a heavy lift vessel (HLV) in reverse order of their installation. Considering the high risk and cost of working offshore, shortening the lift time is crucial. In contrast to the traditional experience-driven lift operations, this paper describes minimizing the lift path for each OOGP module during disassembly, leveraging building information modeling (BIM) technology and an improved A* algorithm. BIM models provide accurate component-based geometric and semantic information that can be used for planning and optimization. However, there has been no previous study on the use of BIM for offshore disassembly. Industry Foundation Classes (IFC), which is a neutral data model of BIM, is used in this study to represent OOGP models. In particular, the IfcBuildingElementProxy entity is used to represent the OOGP components, and the information in IfcBuildingElementProxy is automatically extracted to obtain the location and dimension information of each OOGP module. Then, for a given layout of modules on the removal vessel, the lift path and removal sequence of different modules, with the shortest lift path distance, are obtained. The lift path distance is calculated using the A* algorithm, which has been widely applied in 2D environments and is modified in this study to suit the 3D environment. Finally, the genetic algorithm (GA) technique is applied to optimize the layout plan on the removal vessel by minimizing the total lift path distance. The developed BIM-based framework is illustrated and evaluated through an illustrative example. The results show that the proposed framework can generate and visualize the shortest lift path for each OOGP module directly and automatically, and significantly improve the efficiency of OOGP disassembly. Link
HKUST Identifying potential opportunities of building information modeling for construction and demolition waste management and minimization Journal 03/2017 Won, J., and Cheng, J.C.P. The amount of waste generated in construction and demolition (C&D) processes is enormous. Therefore, many studies on efficient C&D waste minimization and management have been conducted. However, 21 process-related and 8 technology-related limitations in C&D waste management and minimization have not yet been resolved. Building information modeling (BIM) helps project participants improve the processes and technologies in the planning, design, construction, and demolition phases, thereby managing and minimizing C&D waste efficiently. Therefore, this paper identifies the potential opportunities of BIM for efficient C&D waste management and minimization, such as design review, 3D coordination, quantity take-off, phase planning, site utilization planning, construction system design, digital fabrication, and 3D control and planning. The BIM-based approaches can support C&D waste management and minimization processes and technologies by addressing existing limitations through in-depth literature review. The roles of project participants and information required for each BIM-based approach in C&D waste management and minimization are discussed with illustrative process maps. Link