Stiffness and strength-based lightweight design of truss structures using multi-material topology optimization

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Abstract

Stiffness and strength are important structural design criteria. However, most contributions to Topology Optimization (TO) deal with the compliance minimization problem. Controlling stresses in a structure is very important to avoid material failure, but that raises complications in TO, such as: nonlinearity, singularity and high computational cost. The total weight of a structure is also another important criterion in optimal design. The multi-material setting is considered in the present work as it opens the possibility to improve structural performance even further allowing extra weight reduction. Recursive SIMP is used as the material interpolation scheme and design solutions are sought using the ground structure approach. This means that truss-like (lattice) designs are obtained here. The problem is relaxed to the continuum by introducing an artificial density variable and it is solved by a gradientbased algorithm (MMA). A stress-constraint relaxation technique (qp-approach) is applied to overcome the stress singularity phenomenon. A continuation approach is used to guarantee discrete solutions, i.e., only the presence or absence of bars is identified. Therefore, design uniformity in terms of bars cross section areas is ensured. Hence, this work proposes a methodology to perform Multi-Material Topology Optimization (MMTO) of truss structures, with density-based design variables, and subject to stress constraints. To discuss the differences between stiffness and strength-oriented optimal designs, a compliance minimization problem subject to mass constraint is also considered. The example chosen demonstrates the viability of the proposed design methodology and it also reveals differences between the strongest and the stiffest designs.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication9th International Conference on Computational Methods for Coupled Problems in Science and Engineering, COUPLED PROBLEMS 2021
EditorsE. Onate, M. Papadrakakis, B. Schrefler
PublisherInternational Center for Numerical Methods in Engineering
Publication statusPublished - 2021
Event9th International Conference on Computational Methods for Coupled Problems in Science and Engineering, COUPLED PROBLEMS 2021 - Virtual, Online, Italy
Duration: 13 Jun 202116 Jun 2021

Conference

Conference9th International Conference on Computational Methods for Coupled Problems in Science and Engineering, COUPLED PROBLEMS 2021
Country/TerritoryItaly
CityVirtual, Online
Period13/06/2116/06/21

Keywords

  • Compliance
  • Multi-material
  • Optimization
  • Stress
  • Topology
  • Truss

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