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Uncertainty and Interpretability Studies in Soft Computing with an Application to Complex Manufacturing Systems

Rubio Solis, Adrian (2014) Uncertainty and Interpretability Studies in Soft Computing with an Application to Complex Manufacturing Systems. PhD thesis, University of Sheffield.

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In systems modelling and control theory, the benefits of applying neural networks have been extensively studied. Particularly in manufacturing processes, such as the prediction of mechanical properties of heat treated steels. However, modern industrial processes usually involve large amounts of data and a range of non-linear effects and interactions that might hinder their model interpretation. For example, in steel manufacturing the understanding of complex mechanisms that lead to the mechanical properties which are generated by the heat treatment process is vital. This knowledge is not available via numerical models, therefore an experienced metallurgist estimates the model parameters to obtain the required properties. This human knowledge and perception sometimes can be imprecise leading to a kind of cognitive uncertainty such as vagueness and ambiguity when making decisions. In system classification, this may be translated into a system deficiency - for example, small input changes in system attributes may result in a sudden and inappropriate change for class assignation. In order to address this issue, practitioners and researches have developed systems that are functional equivalent to fuzzy systems and neural networks. Such systems provide a morphology that mimics the human ability of reasoning via the qualitative aspects of fuzzy information rather by its quantitative analysis. Furthermore, these models are able to learn from data sets and to describe the associated interactions and non-linearities in the data. However, in a like-manner to neural networks, a neural fuzzy system may suffer from a lost of interpretability and transparency when making decisions. This is mainly due to the application of adaptive approaches for its parameter identification. Since the RBF-NN can be treated as a fuzzy inference engine, this thesis presents several methodologies that quantify different types of uncertainty and its influence on the model interpretability and transparency of the RBF-NN during its parameter identification. Particularly, three kind of uncertainty sources in relation to the RBF-NN are studied, namely: entropy, fuzziness and ambiguity. First, a methodology based on Granular Computing (GrC), neutrosophic sets and the RBF-NN is presented. The objective of this methodology is to quantify the hesitation produced during the granular compression at the low level of interpretability of the RBF-NN via the use of neutrosophic sets. This study also aims to enhance the disitnguishability and hence the transparency of the initial fuzzy partition. The effectiveness of the proposed methodology is tested against a real case study for the prediction of the properties of heat-treated steels. Secondly, a new Interval Type-2 Radial Basis Function Neural Network (IT2-RBF-NN) is introduced as a new modelling framework. The IT2-RBF-NN takes advantage of the functional equivalence between FLSs of type-1 and the RBF-NN so as to construct an Interval Type-2 Fuzzy Logic System (IT2-FLS) that is able to deal with linguistic uncertainty and perceptions in the RBF-NN rule base. This gave raise to different combinations when optimising the IT2-RBF-NN parameters. Finally, a twofold study for uncertainty assessment at the high-level of interpretability of the RBF-NN is provided. On the one hand, the first study proposes a new methodology to quantify the a) fuzziness and the b) ambiguity at each RU, and during the formation of the rule base via the use of neutrosophic sets theory. The aim of this methodology is to calculate the associated fuzziness of each rule and then the ambiguity related to each normalised consequence of the fuzzy rules that result from the overlapping and to the choice with one-to-many decisions respectively. On the other hand, a second study proposes a new methodology to quantify the entropy and the fuzziness that come out from the redundancy phenomenon during the parameter identification. To conclude this work, the experimental results obtained through the application of the proposed methodologies for modelling two well-known benchmark data sets and for the prediction of mechanical properties of heat-treated steels conducted to publication of three articles in two peer-reviewed journals and one international conference.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Academic Units: The University of Sheffield > Faculty of Engineering (Sheffield) > Automatic Control and Systems Engineering (Sheffield)
The University of Sheffield > Faculty of Engineering (Sheffield)
Identification Number/EthosID: uk.bl.ethos.634348
Depositing User: Mr. Adrian Rubio Solis
Date Deposited: 09 Feb 2015 10:41
Last Modified: 01 Mar 2020 10:53
URI: http://etheses.whiterose.ac.uk/id/eprint/7995

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