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Geomechanics and Engineering
  Volume 6, Number 6, June 2014, pages 545-560

Sensitivity-based reliability analysis of earth slopes using finite element method
Jian Ji and Hong-Jian Liao

    For slope stability analysis, an alternative to the classical limit equilibrium method (LEM) of slices is the shear strength reduction method (SRM), which can be integrated into finite element analysis or finite difference analysis. Recently, probabilistic analysis of earth slopes has been very attractive because it is capable to take the soil uncertainty into account. However, the SRM is less commonly extended to probabilistic framework compared to a variety of probabilistic LEM analysis of earth slopes. To overcome some limitations that hinder the development of probabilistic SRM stability analysis, a new procedure based on recursive algorithm FORM with sensitivity analysis in the space of original variables is proposed. It can be used to deal with correlated non-normal variables subjected to implicit limit state surface. Using the proposed approach, a probabilistic finite element analysis of the stability of an existing earth dam is carried out in this paper.
Key Words
    slope stability; SRM; finite element analysis; probabilistic analysis; FORM
(1) Jian Ji:
Department of Civil Engineering, Monash University, Australia;
(2) Hong-Jian Liao:
Department of Civil Engineering, Xi'an Jiaotong University, P.R. China.

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