Tirana, Albania
Tirana, Albania

Epoka University is a private for-profit university founded in 2007 in Tirana, Albania. The university received accreditation by the Albanian Agency for Accreditation of Higher Education in 2011. It offers Bachelor, Master of Science, Professional Master and PhD degrees. There are six PhD programs that are administered solely by Epoka staff in: Architecture, Civil Engineering, Computer Engineering, Economics, Political Science and International Relations and Business Administration. It offers a joint degree with Leeds Metropolitan University. At the Webometrics Ranking of World Universities, EU holds the first place among universities in Albania.The university identifies itself as secular; independent sources assert that it is part of the Gülen movement, which has been active in Albania since 1992 and owns/operates a number of schools through the Turgut Özal Education Company.Epoka is an authorised IELTS registration Centre for the British Council in Albania. The university is a signatory of Magna Charta Universitatum and a member of the UNESCO based worldwide association of International Association of Universities.Epoka University has two faculties, the Faculty of Architecture and Engineering and the Faculty of Economics and Administrative science, eight academic departments, and two research centers: Architecture Banking and Finance Business and Management|Administration Civil Engineering Computer Engineering Electronics and Digital Communication Engineering Economics Business Informatics Political Science and International Relations Center of European Studies Earthquake and Construction Technologies Research CenterEpoka University has 1400 students, including 330 graduate students. It attracts students from Albania, Turkey, Kosovo, Montenegro, and Macedonia.The language of instruction at Epoka University is English. The study programs are compatible with the Bologna system. The Rinas campus is located 12 km from the city center, near the Tirana International Airport. Wikipedia.

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Binici H.,University Of Kmara Sutu Mam | Gemci R.,University Of Kmara Sutu Mam | Kaplan H.,Epoka University
Construction and Building Materials | Year: 2012

In this study, production of mortars with disposable polyethylene bottles, but without cement, was investigated. The disposable polyethylene bottles were crushed and converted into fiber formation. Then fibers were molten with different types of sands at the temperature range of 180-200 °C. Some physical (e.g. water absorption and abrasion resistance) and some mechanical (e.g. bending strength, compressive strength, toughness) properties of mortars were tested. The results indicated that bending strength and toughness of mortars were improved. Besides, water absorption of mortar was negligible and abrasion was nearly equal to zero. © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Niroumand H.,University of Technology Malaysia | Millona K.,Epoka University
Geotechnical News | Year: 2010

This session presents a survey and the performance of the role of shred geogrids in mud brick's compressive strength and a comparison of it with the normal mud bricks. Mud brick consists of clay, water and different materials. Its massive use may become an important evaluation due to its low cost and higher compressive strength compared to the concrete blocks. Many experiments conducted on earth blocks without any addition material, report about its low compressive strength. Thus, many testing on the strength of the mud brick, with different additional materials were done. These different additions may be shred tires, which consist in narrow strips of rubber. Another material is the shred geogrids, which consists in polyester strips grid. The paper articulates the change of compressive strength of mud bricks with these different additional materials. This is evident in the compressive test days 3,7,14 and 21 where the results show that due to different bricks with normal mud bricks and shred geogrids with sizes of 10cm×10cm×10cm, have 20% moisture content. The tires are one of the materials that cause environmental pollution and it is used less after consumption in the automotive industry, thus we used a cheap material for surveying the strength in mud brick. As well the geogrids are used in soil stabilization, where they have additional pieces in construction, so we used them in mud bricks. The results show that performances of mud bricks with shred geogrids were better than normal mud bricks.

Topal A.O.,Epoka University | Altun O.,Yildiz Technical University
Information Sciences | Year: 2016

Nature-inspired algorithms are a very important part of meta-heuristics. A novel nature inspired algorithm called the Dynamic Virtual Bats Algorithm (DVBA) is presented in this paper. DVBA is inspired by a bat's ability to manipulate frequency and wavelength of the emitted sound waves when hunting. A role based search has been developed to improve the diversification and intensification capability of Bat Algorithm. In the DVBA, there are only two bats: explorer and exploiter bat. While the explorer bat explores the search space, the exploiter bat makes an intensive search of the local with the highest probability of locating the desired target. Depending on their location, bats exchange the roles dynamically. The performance of the DVBA is extensively evaluated on a suite of 30 bound-constrained optimization problems from CEC 2014 and compared favorably with other well-known meta-heuristics algorithms. The experimental results demonstrated that the proposed DVBA outperform, or is comparable to, its competitors in terms of the quality of final solution and its convergence rates. © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Okmen O.,Epoka University | Oztas A.,Epoka University
Construction Management and Economics | Year: 2010

Cost estimation is an important task in construction projects. Since various risk-factors affect the construction costs, the actual costs generally deviate from the estimated costs in a favourable or an adverse direction. Therefore, not only estimation of the costs but also an analysis of the uncertainty of the estimated costs is required. This requirement gains more importance in projects constrained by money as the main driver. The traditional cost estimation, i.e. predicting the construction costs and simply calculating the total, is deterministic and insufficient. This approach neglects the uncertainty and the correlation effects. A new simulation-based model-the correlated cost risk analysis model (CCRAM)-is proposed to analyse the construction costs under uncertainty when the costs and risk-factors are correlated. CCRAM captures the correlation between the costs and risk-factors indirectly and qualitatively. The efficiency and effectiveness of the model is evaluated through an application of CCRAM and Monte Carlo simulation (MCS) based method using the same hypothetical data. The findings show that CCRAM operates well and produces more consistent results compatible with the theoretical expectancies. © 2010 Taylor & Francis.

Bilgin H.,Epoka University | Korini O.,Epoka University
Natural Hazards and Earth System Science | Year: 2012

This study evaluates seismic capacity of the unreinforced masonry buildings with the selected template designs constructed per pre-modern code in Albania considering nonlinear behaviour of masonry. Three residential buildings with template designs were selected to represent an important percentage of residential buildings in medium-size cities located in seismic regions of Albania. Selection of template designed buildings and material properties were based on archive and site survey in several cities of Albania. Capacity curves of investigated buildings were determined by pushover analyses conducted in two principal directions. The seismic performances of these buildings have been determined for various earthquake levels. Seismic capacity evaluation was carried out in accordance with FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency) 440 guidelines. Reasons for building damages in past earthquakes are examined using the results of capacity assessment of investigated buildings. It is concluded that of the residential buildings with the template design, with the exception of one, are far from satisfying required performance criteria. Furthermore, deficiencies and possible solutions to improve the capacity of investigated buildings are discussed. © 2012 Author(s).

Pojani D.,Epoka University
Journal of Environmental Planning and Management | Year: 2011

This paper reviews the environmental and health impacts of private motorization in Albania since the fall of communism and the failures of the public sector to effectively control these impacts. The paper focuses on the capital, Tirana, which has almost one-third of the national population, most of the national wealth, twice the rate of car ownership in the rest of the country, and the bulk of the adverse impacts related to motorisation. © 2011 University of Newcastle upon Tyne.

Binici H.,Epoka University
International Journal of Materials Research | Year: 2010

The supplementary waste barite aggregates deposit in Osmaniye, southern Turkey, has been estimated at around 500 000 000 tons based on 2007 records. The aim of the present study is to investigate the durability of concrete incorporating waste barite as coarse and river sand (RS), granule blast furnace slag (GBFS), granule basaltic pumice (GBP) and ≤4 mm granule barite (B) as fine aggregates. The properties of the fresh concrete determined included the air content, slump, slump loss and setting time. They also included the compressive strength, flexural and splitting tensile strengths and Young's modulus of elasticity, resistance to abrasion and sulphate resistance of hardened concrete. Besides these, control mortars were prepared with crushed limestone aggregates. The influence of waste barite as coarse aggregates and RS, GBFS, GBP and B as fine aggregates on the durability of the concretes was evaluated. The mass attenuation coefficients were calculated at photon energies of 1 keV to 100 GeV using XCOM and the obtained results were compared with the measurements at 0.66 and 1.25 MeV. The results showed the possibility of using these waste barite aggregates in the production of heavy concretes. In several cases, some of these properties have been improved. Durability of the concrete made with these waste aggregates was improved. Thus, these materials should be preferably used as aggregates in heavyweight concrete production. © 2010 Carl Hanser Verlag, Munich, Germany.

Bilgin H.,Epoka University
Journal of Performance of Constructed Facilities | Year: 2016

This study uses fragility curves to focus on the seismic safety evaluation of RC hospital buildings in Turkey. Three hospital buildings with varying heights of 3-5 stories are selected, and a set of fragility curves are generated for each class. The major parameters considered in this study are the number of stories, lateral stiffness, strength, and displacement capacities of the selected template designs. A large number of pushover and time history analyses are deployed under a set of 100 strong ground motion records. Fragility curves are generated based on the analysis results for each of the typical buildings. Peak ground velocity (PGV) is selected as the measure of seismic intensity. From the generated sets of the fragility curves, it is observed that damage probabilities are significantly affected by the concrete and detailing quality. Using the constructed fragility curves, collapse probabilities of existing public buildings were estimated according to PGV values. The estimated damage by fragility analyses is compared with past studies related to RC buildings in the region. Hence, analytical fragility curves developed in this study can increase the effectiveness of seismic assessment of essential health care facilities with template designs in the Turkey region. © 2015 American Society of Civil Engineers.

Bilgin H.,Epoka University
Engineering Structures | Year: 2013

Public buildings which are mostly built of reinforced concrete with template designs constitute a great part of the vulnerable public building stock in Turkey as well as in several other countries prone to earthquakes. This study focuses on seismic fragility assessment of reinforced concrete public buildings with representative template designs, which have been designed according to the 1975 version of the Turkish seismic design code. Lateral stiffness, strength and displacement capacities of the selected template designs are determined by nonlinear static analyses in two principal directions. The inelastic dynamic characteristics of the template designs investigated are represented by equivalent single degree of freedom systems and their seismic deformation demands are calculated using a set of 100 strong ground motion records. Peak ground velocity is selected as the measure of seismic intensity because it has a good correlation with maximum inelastic displacements. Based on assessed capacities and demands, fragility curves are derived separately for each template designs. Buildings are grouped according to the number of storeys. The results revealed that the effect of concrete and detailing quality on IO performance level is more limited and less critical as the ground motion intensity increases. On the other hand, the probability of exceedence for LS and CP are closer to each other for each group of buildings. Finally, using constructed fragility curves, collapse probabilities of existing public buildings were estimated according to PGV values. The results are evaluated in terms of concrete quality and transverse reinforcement detailing. © 2013 Elsevier Ltd.

Pojani D.,Epoka University
Land Use Policy | Year: 2011

This article discusses trends in the distribution of retail development in Tirana (the capital of Albania) and its surrounding areas. The story of these trends in Tirana exhibits unique characteristics connected to the city's exceptional population growth and exceptional densification since the end of the communist era in 1990. Tirana provides an example of how a center city can continue to dominate retail commerce when there are very limited restraints on residential and commercial density in the inner city and very limited foreign investment in retail development. © 2011 Elsevier Ltd.

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