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Paper w78_2007_27:
Multicriteria decision making in n-D

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Donald E. Grierson

Multicriteria decision making in n-D

Abstract:The paper concerns engineering design governed by multiple objective criteria that are in conflict and compete for available resources (material, financial, etc.). A multicriteria decision making (MCDM) strategy is pre-sented that employs a tradeoff-analysis technique to identify compromise-design solutions that mutually satisfy the competing criteria in a Pareto-optimal sense. The concepts are initially illustrated in detail for a design governed by n=2 conflicting criteria. Curve-fitting, equation-discovery and equation-solving software are employed to find competi-tive general equilibrium states corresponding to Pareto-tradeoff designs of a flexural plate governed by conflicting weight and deflection criteria. The MCDM strategy is then extended to designs involving more than two conflicting cri-teria, and is applied for a bridge maintenance plan design governed by n=3 criteria. The paper concludes with a dis-cussion of the application of the MCDM strategy to designs involving n=4 and n=11 conflicting criteria.

Keywords:multicriteria design engineering, Pareto optimization, Pareto trade-off

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