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Mathematical Problems in Engineering
Volume 2015, Article ID 828930, 12 pages
Research Article

Reliability-Based Design Optimization for Crane Metallic Structure Using ACO and AFOSM Based on China Standards

Mechanical Engineering College, Taiyuan University of Science and Technology, Taiyuan, Shanxi 030024, China

Received 9 July 2014; Revised 4 January 2015; Accepted 19 January 2015

Academic Editor: Paolo Lonetti

Copyright © 2015 Xiaoning Fan and Xiaoheng Bi. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The design optimization of crane metallic structures is of great significance in reducing their weight and cost. Although it is known that uncertainties in the loads, geometry, dimensions, and materials of crane metallic structures are inherent and inevitable and that deterministic structural optimization can lead to an unreliable structure in practical applications, little amount of research on these factors has been reported. This paper considers a sensitivity analysis of uncertain variables and constructs a reliability-based design optimization model of an overhead traveling crane metallic structure. An advanced first-order second-moment method is used to calculate the reliability indices of probabilistic constraints at each design point. An effective ant colony optimization with a mutation local search is developed to achieve the global optimal solution. By applying our reliability-based design optimization to a realistic crane structure, we demonstrate that, compared with the practical design and the deterministic design optimization, the proposed method could find the lighter structure weight while satisfying the deterministic and probabilistic stress, deflection, and stiffness constraints and is therefore both feasible and effective.