Intelligent selection of demolition techniques
There is a need to improve the current demolition techniques selection process that involves a multicriteria decision making problems because the decision performed by demolition engineers were based on their knowledge and experience without any systematic procedure that can be followed to support the decision process. There is also a need to capture the expert's knowledge since significant proportion of senior, experienced demolition engineers are close to retirement, and unless their knowledge is captured in some form, it would be lost. Concerning to these needs, the research aim is to develop an intelligent decision support system that incorporated the demolition expert's knowledge in selecting the most appropriate demolition techniques for a given structure. Various research methodologies were adopted to achieve the aim. Literature on demolition industry was first reviewed. Knowledge acquisition approaches were used to capture the demolition expert knowledge, which included an industry survey through postal questionnaire, semi-structured interviews, and protocol analysis. The rapid prototyping methodology was used in developing the prototype system. The proposed intelligent decision support system is called 'Demolition Techniques Selection System' (DTSS). The prototype system consists of two stages. The first stage will assist the decision maker to select the most appropriate demolition techniques in term of technical aspects by using Analytic Hierarchy Process (AHP) model. The second stage allows the decision maker to assess the demolition techniques in terms of cost by using the Demolition Cost Estimation model. The prototype was evaluated during and after the development process to verify, validates, and improves it. The evaluation revealed that the prototype system demonstrated many benefits and applicable for use in the industry. It is concluded that the prototype provides a clear, systematic and structured framework that improved the current demolition techniques selection process. It also serves as an information source that contains a considerable amount of information on demolition techniques. It can act as a teaching aid for young professionals coming into the demolition industry by giving them a basic information and understanding of demolition. Demolition contractors can use the system as a marketing aid to impress potential clients to win a project because of its ability to give rational and structured decisions with the capability of generating graphical reports and sensitivity analysis.