Frontiers of Structural and Civil Engineering

, Volume 10, Issue 4, pp 472–480 | Cite as

Multi-objective optimal design of braced frames using hybrid genetic and ant colony optimization

  • Mehdi Babaei
  • Ebrahim Sanaei
Research Article


In this article, multi-objective optimization of braced frames is investigated using a novel hybrid algorithm. Initially, the applied evolutionary algorithms, ant colony optimization (ACO) and genetic algorithm (GA) are reviewed, followed by developing the hybrid method. A dynamic hybridization of GA and ACO is proposed as a novel hybrid method which does not appear in the literature for optimal design of steel braced frames. Not only the cross section of the beams, columns and braces are considered to be the design variables, but also the topologies of the braces are taken into account as additional design variables. The hybrid algorithm explores the whole design space for optimum solutions. Weight and maximum displacement of the structure are employed as the objective functions for multi-objective optimal design. Subsequently, using the weighted sum method (WSM), the two objective problem are converted to a single objective optimization problem and the proposed hybrid genetic ant colony algorithm (HGAC) is developed for optimal design. Assuming different combination for weight coefficients, a trade-off between the two objectives are obtained in the numerical example section. To make the final decision easier for designers, related constraint is applied to obtain practical topologies. The achieved results show the capability of HGAC to find optimal topologies and sections for the elements.


multi-objective hybrid algorithm ant colony genetic algorithm displacement weighted sum method steel braced frames 


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Copyright information

© Higher Education Press and Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Civil Engineering, Faculty of EngineeringUniversity of ZanjanZanjanIran

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