Application of generalized regression neural networks in predicting the unconfined compressive strength of carbonate rocks
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Measuring unconfined compressive strength (UCS) using standard laboratory tests is a difficult, expensive, and time-consuming task, especially with highly fractured, highly porous, weak rock. This study aims to establish predictive models for the UCS of carbonate rocks formed in various facies and exposed in Tasonu Quarry, northeast Turkey. The objective is to effectively select the explanatory variables from among a subset of the dataset containing total porosity, effective porosity, slake durability index, and P-wave velocity in dry samples and in the solid part of samples. This was based on the adjusted determination coefficient and root-mean-square error values of different linear regression analysis combinations using all possible regression methods. A prediction model for UCS was prepared using generalized regression neural networks (GRNNs). GRNNs were preferred over feed-forward back-propagation algorithm-based neural networks because there is no problem of local minimums in GRNNs. In this study, as a result of all possible regression analyses, alternative combinations involving one, two, and three inputs were used. Through comparison of GRNN performance with that of feed-forward back-propagation algorithm-based neural networks, it is demonstrated that GRNN is a good potential candidate for prediction of the unconfined compressive strength of carbonate rocks. From an examination of other applications of UCS prediction models, it is apparent that the GRNN technique has not been used thus far in this field. This study provides a clear and practical summary of the possible impact of alternative neural network types in UCS prediction.