European Journal of Scientific Research ISSN 1450-216X Vol.35 No.1 (2009), pp 121-129 © EuroJournals Publishing, Inc.

2009 http://www.eurojournals.com/ejsr.htm

Development of Expert System for Airport Pavement Maintenance and Rehabilitation
Norlela Ismail Department of Civil and Structure Engineering/Sustainable Urban Transport Research Centre Faculty of Engineering and Built Environment, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia 43600 Bangi, Selangor, Malaysia E-mail: norlelaismail@uniten.edu.my; norisdpp@yahoo.com Amiruddin Ismail Department of Civil and Structure Engineering/Sustainable Urban Transport Research Centre Faculty of Engineering and Built Environment, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia 43600 Bangi, Selangor, Malaysia E-mail: abim@vlsi.eng.ukm.my Riza Atiq O.K. Rahmat Department of Civil and Structure Engineering/Sustainable Urban Transport Research Centre Faculty of Engineering and Built Environment, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia 43600 Bangi, Selangor, Malaysia E-mail: riza@vlsi.eng.ukm.my Abstract Airport networks become one of the important assets in a country that constitute an enormous investment of public funds. For a good return in the investment, the networks need to be sustained and maintained in an adequate condition by employing the most cost effective method of maintenance and rehabilitation. This required not only financially but particularly in term of human resources and expertise in considering the decisions. Expert system is perhaps the most beneficial application for engineers and decision makers as it emulate human expertise and judgment through the use of symbolic logic and heuristics for determination of solution strategies and solutions. A protype development expert system in flexible airport pavemenrt maintenance and rehabilitation based on KAPPA-PC program package has been introduced in this study. The knowledge acquisition in developing the system shall consist of several modules that involved interviews with the domain expert and literature review from various textures. This expert system is developed to help in identifying the distress associated with airport pavements and structures, diagnosing the cause of deterioration, recommending the rehabilitation treatment, and providing information on costing.

Keywords: Expert system, pavement management, airport pavement

Early detection and repair of airport pavement defect seems to be the most important method in preventive maintenance (FAA 2003). experience and thought process used by airport pavement engineering experts for the benefit of inexperience engineers. who use their knowledge. The purpose of this paper is to focus on the prototype development of such knowledge-based or expert system for analysis and design of maintenance and rehabilitation strategies for flexible airport pavement using KAPPA-PC expert system shell. easy to . 2001). These experts are seldom found in local agencies and their necessary knowledge in diagnosis the pavement distress and determining the proper treatments is difficult to pass on to the less experienced engineers. also known as knowledge-based systems are computerized advisory program that imitate the reasoning process and desicion-making skills of human experts when solving specific problem in narrow domain (Sundin et al. and judgment of expert pavement engineer by first identifying a main feasible rehabilitation approach and to provide the local engineering user with an interactive analysis and design tool for development of pavement rehabilitation strategies (Sundin et al. Application of Expert System in Airport Pavement Management Expert systems. Large investments in time and money are required by aviation agency to sustain the maintenance and rehabilitation program. As they are retiring. They are powerful tools that able to embody the knowledge. The selection of feasible rehabilitation strategies involves a great deal of knowledge about the condition of the assets. Expert systems are receiving greater attention from organizations because of their ability to enhance productivity and to aid in the decision making process especially when human experts are becoming increasingly difficult to find and retain together with the reduction in pavement budgets. Their advantages over human expertise are that they are permanent. it is necessary to captured as much as possible of the knowledge. Some of these aspects could be solved deterministically and the others must be solved heuristically. So. For a good return in the investment. and impact of the action on the system performance. They are among the most active reseach area in artificial intelligent (AI) which have several distinct advantages compared to convetional computer program or human expertise. 2001). it is critical to employ the most cost effective method of maintenance and repair. experience. stringent budgetary constraint combined with continuously deterioration of pavement structures over time due to environmental factors and increasing traffic loads is a highly complex problem to aviation agency. Introduction Airport networks are one of the important assets in a country especially after the air travel has become increasingly popular as a mode of transportation. and emulate human expertise and judgement through the use of heuristics and compiled human experience (Ritchie 1987). 2. Advances in computer hardware technology and software development for data-gathering method have also made the application of expert systems in the area of pavement rehabilitation grows rapidly.Development of Expert System for Airport Pavement Maintenance and Rehabilitation 122 1. manipulate the symbolic knowledge. judgment and experience to make interferences and reach design and investment decisions. However. easy to transfer. It may also increase the possibility of aircraft accident or aircraft operation delayed which caused unnecessary discomfort of airport users. repaired. Airport pavements need to be constantly maintained. effectiveness of the corrective strategies. Expert systems have been the first artificial intelligent technique to be applied to pavement management. Failure to perform restoration treatment in a timely manner may result in an increase in rehabilitation costs due to accelerated pavement distress. Expert systems able to separate the domain knowledge and the inference. The heuristic knowledge is possessed by a limited number of pavement engineering specialists. and upgraded in order to ensure the smooth airport operations and sustain the pavements in an adequate condition. represent process and knowledge transparently. the knowledge and experience may be lost. New technologies applicable to pavement management and maintenance are continually evolving and expert systems seem the most common technology used to substitute for human expertise. The introduction of heavy airport traffic such as A380 also makes the airport pavement difficult to plan and carry out pavement preservation and repair project.

slippage cracking. linear cracking. taxiway. PAVER and AIRPACS are two expert systems that are applicable to airport network. jet blast erosion. Rahmat document. Until recently. depression. corrugation. difficult to document. This system uses the knowledge and experience of planners. and empirical design method to select the new treatment layer thicknesses and joint spacing requirements. operational. constructors. planning and life-cycle-cost. which is difficult to update. AIRPACS uses mechanistic. A summary of several expert systems that have been developed to solve problems in the pavement management area is presented in Table 1. . repair and rehabilitation activities is perhaps the most beneficial application for engineers and decision makers. It utilizes the pavement condition index (PCI) survey and rating procedure to obtain information to draw conclusion and make recommendation on the maintenance and rehabilitation requirements. It considered functional. bleeding. block cracking. spalling joint. and swell) and for rigid airport pavement. settlement. difficult to transfer. oil spillage. PAVER has been widely used in managing both flexible and rigid airport pavement. For the pavement surface evaluation. The application of expert systems in pavement management area especially to diagnostics. AIRPACS considered fifteen types of surface distresses that are similar as PAVER. it considered fifteen types of pavement distresses (blow-up. recommending different repair and rehabilitation strategies. joint reflection cracking. and joint seal damage). patching. airfield managers. The treatment strategies are compared using life-cycle cost method which uses the annualized cost as the economic criterion. According to Kaetzel and Clifton (1991) expert systems can assist the engineer in identifying the distress associated with pavements and structures. spalling corner. AIRPACS is developed to solve design problem in rigid airport pavement particularly on jointed plain concrete pavement (JPCP). Although the application of the expert systems has been existence since 1980s.K. rutting. polished aggregate. corner break. durability cracking. shattered slab. raveling/weathering. shrinkage cracks. longitudinal/transverse/diagonal cracking. The knowledge-base addressed the three different components of system including the runways. and safety aspects of the airport systems in determining the treatment strategies recommendation. Amiruddin Ismail and Riza Atiq O. and aprons. consistent and affordable. pumping. longitudinal and transverse cracking. structural. PAVER considered sixteen types of surface distresses (alligator cracking. and rehabilitation. diagnosing the cause of deterioration.123 Norlela Ismail. shoving. whearas human expertise is perishable. and designers to evaluate difficult problems related to rehabilitation of the airfield system components. PAVER classified the M&R strategy into three groups: routine maintenance. patching. and provides information for budgeting. most of them are for highway networks (Norlela et al 2009). unpredictable and expensive (Kaplan 1984). heuristic. scaling. major maintenance. popouts. For flexible airport pavement. This system is written in conventional computer program language.

and quantity). surface distress is through the visual condition assessment (type.1991 Hanna 1994 DeCabooter et al. 3. skid resistance (safety) and surface distress (Shahin 1982. It provides valuable and necessary information for both project-level pavement maintenance and rehabilitation decision-making and overall pavement management.1. establish the probable cause of surface distress. and Haas 1997). According to Michael et al. 1987 Haas et al. the analysis and design of pavement maintenance and rehabilitation (M&R) is generally comprises of four interrelated tasks: (i) surface condition evaluation (ii) analysis and evaluation of structural adequacy (iii) design of alternative strategies and (iv) selection of “optimal” strategy. 1989 Allez et al. Surface Condition Evaluation Pavement surface or functional condition evaluation is one of the important functions in most pavement management. These measurements are expressed in the form of a quality index which sometimes needs to be based on judgment. 1988 Hall et al. For the management of airport networks. 1989 Al-Shawi et al. safety is measured through surface friction. and develop temporal performance trends for different pavement types and design under various traffic and environmental condition in order to predict the approximate time for scheduling future work. Ritchie (1987) stated that the evaluation of a pavement’s surface condition enables to make a judgment on the adequacy of existing pavement for current services. 1989 Ross et al. Ride quality of a pavement is addressed through measurement of surface roughness. the evaluation procedure of pavement functional condition should be based on the analysis of the potential for foreign object damage (FOD) to aircrafts. Ritchie 1987. and FOD is determined by considering only the distresses or severity levels capable of producing FOD. 1987 Ritchie et al. 1994 Facility Use Highway Highway Highway Highway Highway Highway Highway Highway Airfield Airfield Pavement Type Flexible Flexible Flexible Flexible Rigid Rigid Flexible Flexible Rigid Rigid Development Tools EXSYS EXSYS OPSS French Shell Insight2+ Expert System Shell SAVOIR Not available Not available Mainframe Not available EXSYS Professional Instant Expert Plus Not available Hardware IBM-PC IBM-PC Mainframe IBM-PC IBM-PC IBM-PC Not available IBM-PC Not available IBM-PC Macintosh IBM-PC 124 Expert System ROSE SCEPTRE PERSERVER ERASME EXPEAR PAVEMENT EXPERT PARES PAVER AIRPACS Number of Rules 360 140 Not available 210 Not available Not available 278 Not available Not available 170 (EXSYS) 225 (Instant Expert) 1200 PMAS Highway Flexible Rigid PMDSS Highway Flexible 3.Development of Expert System for Airport Pavement Maintenance and Rehabilitation Table 1: Summary of Expert System Application in Pavement Management Reference Hajek et al. . Airport Pavement Maintenance and Rehabilitation Design According to Ritchie (1987). severity. determine the need for structural evaluation. 1990 Shahin and Walther 1990 Seiler 1990 Seiler et al . (1998). roughness (ride quality). most aviation agencies uses pavement condition index (PCI) that rate the pavement from 0 (failed) to 100 (excellent) to estimate the condition of the pavement. estimate the needs and priorities of maintenance and rehabilitation.

It depends on proper construction with suitable materials and enough thickness to prevent traffic from overstressing the subgrade or any layer of the pavement structure. life cost analysis. 4.1. They can be either deterministic or probabilistic (Michael et al.125 3. effectiveness of the corrective strategies. The methods reflect the design techniques must be tempered with considerable professional judgment. maintenance and rehabilitation module. This program is based on engineering judgment. predict a distribution of such events. The details of these modules are illustrated in Table 2. In order to maintain and improve the pavement structure. The probabilistic. 3. Proposed Expert System Design 4. structural evaluation module. The movement of traffic type is used along with structural condition to determine the pavement structural capacity and predict the remaining life.2. 1998). thus describing the different possible future conditions as the outcomes of a stochastic process. traffic mix module. . This prediction is based on field and laboratory data. The purpose of the structural evaluation is to determine the allowable load of a pavement. The number of operation and type of aircraft using the pavement is also used when analyzing possible cause of deterioration and considering the M&R strategies. structural analysis and evaluation forms a basis for designing the improvement needed to provide service for selected design period. to predict the pavement future service life with respect to the traffic using it.3. When the pavement is found to be inadequate. For most of aviation agency. the knowledge-base shall be acquired from various documented publications as well as observation and experience of expertise in the field of airport pavement which involved interview with expert domain. and cost module. ratio of Aircraft Classification Number to Pavement Classification Number (ACN/PCN) system is used to report the pavement load-carrying capacity. whatever measure condition) of a pavement. and to assess the strength of the existing pavement (Witczak 1978). The knowledge base in this study shall consist of several modules: functional evaluation module. The determination of the best M&R strategy especially for a large pavement network involves a great deal of knowledge about the condition of the assets. The deterministic models predict single number (i. level of distress. remaining life. Structural Adequacy Evaluation Norlela Ismail. Knowledge Base In the development of the proposed expert system for flexible airport pavement maintenance and rehabilitation. and impact of the action on the system performance. Rahmat Structural capacity is defined as the ability of a pavement to support traffic without developing appreciable structural distress (The Asphalt Institute 1977) or in other word. it is necessary for the pavement engineers to establish a program of action to be performed in the next planning period and action plan for future M&R. the load carrying capacity of a pavement. on the other hand. Amiruddin Ismail and Riza Atiq O. and experience are clearly playing a very important role in developing effective M&R strategy. Selection of Alternative Strategies Appropriate M&R activities are selected for each pavement based on current and predicted condition of the pavement sections. the knowledge and expertise of the organization staff and research. the managing agency is able to determine when a pavement should be rehabilitated and what treatment or action should be performed. Through this program. knowledge. 1998) Expert judgment. dynamic programming and experimental version of expert system (Michael et al.K.e.

This module is used to design pavements. diagnose the cause of deterioration.Development of Expert System for Airport Pavement Maintenance and Rehabilitation Table 2: Module Functional Evaluation 126 Modules of Proposed Expert System Function This module analyses the condition of pavement surface based on field measurements relating to four major performance indicators: roughness (ride quality). to select rehabilitation alternatives with least cost to meet expected traffic and climate condition.2. give recommendation in maintenance and rehabilitation strategies based on airport pavement distress evaluation. to perform life-cycle cost analysis. and assesses the strength of the existing pavement. Figure 1 shows the summary of expected results of each module. predicts the pavement future service life with respect to the traffic using it. facilities for explaining on how and why the conclusion is reached. The knowledge representation in KAPPA-PC involve rule based. IF-THEN rules are common way to represent knowledge in expert system where IF clause presents premises or condition and THEN clause present conclusions. and to determine the best time to perform each M&R. The movement of traffic type is used along with structural condition to determine the pavement structural capacity and predict the remaining life. KAPPA-PC is also chosen because of its proven reliability and can be perform by both forward and backward chaining reasoning. 1999). This software package is also very attractive with highly graphic display (Mohamed and Mohamed Hussaini. surface distress (type. severity.3. Prototype developments enable testing and refining the concept of a system. predict pavement performance. This module determines the allowable load carrying capacity of a pavement. Prototype development The knowledge acquisition will be transfer and transform into an expert system computer programmed. and quantity. Expected Result The output result in this proposed development of prototype expert system for airport pavement maintenance and rehabilitation is expected to identify the distress associated with pavements and structures. programmed control mechanisms for managing knowledge base. and capabilities for storing and editing knowledge bases. The number of operation and type of aircraft using the pavement is also used when analyzing possible cause of deterioration and considering the M&R strategies. the knowledge base should consist of rules and facts that are captured from knowledge. This module incorporates the unit costs of all maintenance activities. Structural Evaluation Traffic Mix Analysis M&R Analysis Cost 4. 4. IF-THEN rules in expert system can be modified easily to meet changing needs. opinion. In this development process. KAPPA-PC is selected because it offered the advantages of ease of manipulation and increase productivity besides suitable to use in limited time and has substantial object capabilities (Basri 1999). and potential for foreign object damage (FOD) to aircrafts. Moreover. . Development tools KAPPA-PC expert system shell is used in this study to develop prototype which contains components such as inference engine. and experiences of experts. frame based and object oriented. skid resistance (safety). The knowledge base defines the knowledge presentation scheme which determines the relationship between rules and facts. and establish unit cost for various M&R activities. detail design of the overlay rehabilitation strategies. 5.

K. Expert systems are perhaps the most beneficial application for engineers and decision makers as they emulate human expertise and judgment in finding strategies for providing and maintaining pavements in a serviceable and safe condition at the most possible cost effective way.127 Norlela Ismail. Conclusions As one of the important assets in a country. diagnosing the cause of deterioration. The objective of this study is to develop an expert system in flexible airport pavemenrt maintenance and rehabilitation based on KAPPA-PC program package. This system is expected to give advices in detecting airport pavement distresses. Rahmat Figure 1: Expected Result in Prototype Expert System                               COST MODULE • total cost and benefit with and without recommend M&R application MAINTENANCE AND REHABILITATION (M&R) ANALYSIS MODULE • Recommendation on M&R strategy • Time suitable to implement and construct the M&R strategy • predict PCI after every M&R activity • distress associated with pavements and structures • cause of deterioration • current and future PCI • pavement performance  • load carrying capacity or pavement classification number (PCN) • structural remaining life • time to structural failure • equivalent standard aircraft coverage • aircraft classification number (ACN) FUNCTIONAL EVALUATION MODULE STRUCTURAL EVALUATION MODULE TRAFFIC MIX ANALYSIS MODULE 6. The knowledge acquisition in developing the system shall consist of several modules that involved interviews with the domain expert and literature review from various textures. Amiruddin Ismail and Riza Atiq O. airport networks need to be sustained and maintained in an adequate condition. and recommending the rehabilitation treatment together with the costing information. .

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