Neglect Of Parameter Estimation Uncertainty Can Significantly Overestimate Structural Reliability

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Abstract

Parameter estimation uncertainty is often neglected in reliability studies, i.e. point estimates of distribution parameters are used for representative fractiles, and in probabilistic models. A numerical example examines the effect of this uncertainty on structural reliability using Bayesian statistics. The study reveals that the neglect of parameter estimation uncertainty might lead to an order of magnitude underestimation of failure probability.

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Doc. Ing. Pustka David, Ph.D., Department of Building Structures, Faculty of Civil Engineering, VŠB – Technical University of Ostrava, Czech Republic.

Dr. Ing. Rostislav Rypl, Institute of Structural Mechanics, Faculty of Civil Engineering, Brno University of Technology, Czech Republic.

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