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A. R. Ghanizadeh, N. Heidarabadizadeh,
Volume 8, Issue 4 (10-2018)

One of the most important factors that affects construction costs of highways is the earthwork cost. On the other hand, the earthwork cost strongly depends on the design of vertical alignment or project line. In this study, at first, the problem of vertical alignment optimization was formulated. To this end, station, elevation and vertical curve length in case of each point of vertical intersection (PVI) were considered as decision variables. The objective function was considered as earthwork cost and constraints were assumed as the maximum and minimum grade of tangents, minimum elevation of compulsory points, and the minimum length of vertical curves. For solving this optimization problem, the Colliding Bodies Optimization (CBO) algorithm was employed and results were compared with Genetic Algorithm (GA) and Particle Swarm Optimization (PSO). In order to evaluate the effectiveness of formulation and CBO algorithm, three different highways were designed with respect to three different terrains including level, rolling and mountainous. After designing the preliminary vertical alignment for each highway, the optimal vertical alignments were determined by different optimization algorithms. The results of this research show that the CBO algorithm is superior to GA and PSO. Percentage of optimality (saving in earthworks cost) by CBO algorithm for level, rolling and mountainous terrains was determined as 44.14, 21.42 and 22.54%, respectively.

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