Cuckoo Search is a nature-inspired metaheuristic algorithm applied in slope stability modeling for the searching of critical slip surfaces. It is based on behavioral characteristics of some parasitic Cuckoo birds; in combination with so-called Lévy Flights random walk. This optimization strategy uses an efficient chain of selections that balances intensification and randomization. The searching uses the active search method to randomly select trial slip surfaces, then intensifies each surface based on its potential as a critical slip surface. It follows a process that focuses on shapes with low factor of safety (FOS) and dismisses shapes of high FOS, with some degree of randomization.
The advantage of this searching method lies in its ability to globally recognize low FOS potential of slips and progress by further examining these specific slips, in both 2D and 3D. Cuckoo Search provides an efficient searching method that may require fewer trial slip surfaces by its elitist method of selection. As an automated process, it will search for both circular and non-circular failure surfaces making it an effective searching method where complex materials cause uncertainty of the slip surface geometry. Another useful application is to use Cuckoo Search to compare with results of another search method – for example, Entry and Exit, which requires the entry of specific searching parameters. Without spending more time inputting search parameters, users can use Cuckoo Search within SVSLOPE® to easily search for a critical slip surface to compare with other results.
Cuckoo Search uses a nature-inspired searching algorithm to iteratively locate and determine the shape of the critical slip surface, considering both circular and non-circular failures in 2D or 3D.