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 Earthquake scenario simulation of urban transportation hub: building information modeling and site-city interaction FYP 06/2018 Yeung Tsun Fung
Chau Pang, Francis
Lam Ka Tsun
Seismic capacity of an underground urban transportation hub becomes essential to reduce the risk of seismic hazards. By conducting a comprehensive seismic analysis, it is possible to predict the seismic hazard of the transportation hub more accurately. However, seismic design for the transportation hub is of importance to analyze the soil-structure interaction effect. Therefore, Kowloon Station is selected as a testbed to demonstrate whether the SSI effect is beneficial or detrimental. Today Building Information Modelling becomes a powerful tool to develop a three-dimensional digital model such that it can act as a database for further seismic analysis. Since the numerical finite element modelling method is a common approach to solve the problem, in this study, Plaxis 3D, a professional geotechnical FEM software, is selected to investigate the SSI effect on Kowloon Station. Advanced material models are provided to deal with the complexity of the problem.

The results show that the SSI effect has a beneficial effect which the peak acceleration of the structure base is smaller than that at the ground surface. To carry out a more realistic simulation, more laboratory tests should be carried out to obtain the dynamic soil properties. In order to examine the damage to structural and non-structural components of the structure, the recorded PGA can be applied in further studies such as fragility curves so as to analyze probability of the damage.
HKUST Evaluation and Development of Automated Detailing Design Optimization Framework for RC Slabs Using BIM and Metaheuristics Thesis 08/2019 Muhammad AFZAL Reinforced concrete (RC) structural design optimization has been undertaken for several decades and plays an important role in maximizing the reliability, cost efficiency, and environmental sustainability of RC structures. However, optimization of RC structural design is challenging and requires advanced strategies during different life cycle phases of RC structures. Over the past few decades, substantial fundamental research efforts in RC structural design optimization have been undertaken, but there is a lack of a comprehensive review of these efforts that can provide academic and industry practitioners with sufficient detailed insights. Therefore, this research introduces a critical evaluation of previous research related to the optimization of RC structures for minimizing the amount of construction materials, the material cost, and the environmental effects, with more emphasis on detailing design (such as steel reinforcement), aiming to identify the common research themes and highlight the future directions. Based on the critical evaluation, the portfolio of 348 available research articles presents the identified research gaps and potential future research directions. For example, the adoption of clash-free rebar design optimization, detailing design optimization of complex and irregular RC components, and the concentration of design for manufacture and assembly (DfMA) aspects, are seldom conducted and studied.
Moreover, steel reinforcement detailing design of RC structures is one of the common and important tasks in building construction. Currently, despite having introduced advanced computing technologies in the architecture, engineering, and construction (AEC) industry, the rebar detailing design process is still predominantly performed by manual or at least semi-manual approaches, with the aid of computer software packages following the regional design codes. Manual or semi-manual perspectives often result in conservative, uncertain, and sometimes unacceptable outcomes. Additionally, the simple design of RC structural elements can potentially face constructability issues such as congestion, collision, and complexity which may cause complications during the procurement of rebars and other elements all along the construction phase. These issues also hinder concrete pouring and as a result, generate improper compounding of concrete with the rebars which disturb the integrity of the RC structure. All these concerns substantially increase the construction cost, time and quality and thus are uneconomical for AEC industry stakeholders. Although a few previous studies have conducted detailing design optimization of RC structures, very little attention has been given to the above-mentioned issues. Therefore, this research also aims to develop a holistic BIM-based framework utilizing the different meta-heuristic algorithms (such as SGA, SGA-SQP, and PSO-SQP, etc.) for the optimal detailing design of RC solid slabs, considering the minimization of overall construction cost. The main objective function determines the overall minimized construction cost of the RC solid slab, including the cost of steel reinforcement bars in all reinforcing layers, the cost of concrete, and the cost of labor for installing the steel reinforcement bars and pouring the concrete in the RC solid slab. The optimization process is handled in such a way that the first stage optimizes the steel reinforcement present in all four reinforcing layers (two layers each at the bottom and top of solid slab), while the second stage optimizes the solid slab thickness based on the characteristic concrete strength.

For the optimum design to be directly constructible without any further alterations, aspects such as available standard rebar diameters, spacing requirements of the rebars, relevant regional design provisions (i.e. British Standards), and the above-mentioned constructability (more specifically clash-avoidance) concerns, are also incorporated into the development of optimization model. In this research, a case study of a typical RC solid slab containing one-way and two-way spanning slab panels is analyzed to investigate the capabilities of the proposed framework. The results demonstrate the potential of the developed model in producing optimum and realistic design solutions. The developed model can be utilized as a design tool to retrieve economical design solutions at the early-stage structural detailing design.
HKUST Evaluation of the BIM Adoption for Civil Infrastructure and Development of a 5D BIM Financial Decision Making Framework Thesis 08/2015 Qiqi LU Building Information Modeling (BIM) has been widely adopted in the building industry. However, the application of BIM in civil infrastructure facilities, sometimes referred to Civil Information Modeling (CIM), is relatively lacking and slow. Researchers and practitioners are increasingly putting efforts into CIM study and implementation, but so far there is no comprehensive review of their efforts in this regard. Such study can help the academia and industry find the gaps and identify future research direction. Therefore, this work firstly presents a framework to evaluate the current practices of CIM adoption for various civil infrastructure facilities. In this study, civil infrastructure facilities were divided into nine categories for evaluation and the efforts with regard to CIM adoption for each infrastructure category were evaluated in six aspects. This study summarizes the results of 171 case studies and 62 academic papers on CIM. Based on the evaluation and comparison results, research gaps and future direction are identified. For example, CIM uses for detailed design and documentation phase and O&M phase like 5D cost estimation, are seldom conducted and studied.

5D BIM has been studied in academic research and implemented in industry. However, existing studies on 5D BIM focus on cash outflow estimation rather than cash inflow analysis and project financing. This thesis proposes a 5D BIM-based framework for cash flow analysis and project financing. This framework considers contract types and retainage to estimate cash inflow, and cash outflow patterns for equipment, manpower and materials to accurately estimate cash outflow. Project financing scenarios can also be evaluated using the framework. One building case and one bridge case are demonstrated to validate the proposed framework by considering various what-if scenarios. The framework can help contractors analyze the cash flow and make appropriate decisions for different design and payment scheme alternatives in various types of construction projects.
HKUST Holistic BIM framework for sustainable low carbon design of high-rise buildings Journal 06/2018 Gan, V.J.L., Deng, M., Tse, K.T., Chan, C.M., Lo, I.M.C., and Cheng, J.C.P. In high-density, high-rise cities such as Hong Kong, buildings account for nearly 90% of energy consumption and 61% of the carbon emissions. Therefore, it is important to study the design of buildings, especially high-rise buildings, so as to achieve lower carbon emissions. The carbon emissions of a building consist of embodied carbon from the production of construction materials and operational carbon from energy consumption during daily operation (e.g., air-conditioning and lighting). While most of the previous studies concentrated mainly on either embodied or operational carbon, an integrated analysis of both types of carbon emissions can improve the sustainable design of buildings. Therefore, this paper presents a holistic framework using building information modeling (BIM) technology in order to enhance the sustainable low carbon design of high-rise buildings. BIM provides detailed physical and functional characteristics of buildings that can be integrated with various environmental modeling approaches to achieve a holistic design and assessment of low carbon buildings. In a case study, the proposed framework is examined to evaluate the embodied and operational carbon in a high-rise residential building due to various envelope designs. The results demonstrate how the BIM framework provides a decision support basis for evaluating the key carbon emission sources throughout a building's life cycle and exploring more environmentally sustainable measures to improve the built environment. 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
HKUST Incorporating Project Management Techniques in BIM Projects Report 06/2019 Ziwei YU
Luo Yanfang
In order to manage a project seamlessly, there is a need to establish effective communication between different departments and identify the risks in the project, determine the affected or influencing stakeholders, provide timely resources and logistics, and manage the available resources to make a framework for project implementation. There are several standards and one of the most recognized standards is the Project Management Knowledge Facility (PMBOK). PMBOK is not just a guideline and a methodology for project management, but also can help projects for professional, targeted and comprehensive management. Building Information Modeling (BIM), a project management methodology has been adopted in recent years to design a project integrated as a 3-D information model, which adds all project information in the various phases of the project to a 3-D information model. For a correct BIM implementation in a project, BIM must be integrated into the overall management of the project and must have a BIM Execution Plan (BEP) adapted to the needs of the client and which in turn is integrated into the project management plan. To review BIM/BEP and project management comprehensively, this research consists of three main stages: (1) select of target database examining both academic and applied publications to analyses the situation between BIM/BEP and PMBOK; (2) conducts two surveys about “BIM/BEP with PMBOK” and “BIM project with Risk Management” to have deep understanding of the industry status; (3)select integration, stakeholder and risk management as specific aspects to analyze, and develop a preliminary framework of process guide for BEP. N.A.