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Some aspects of truss topology optimization

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The present paper studies some aspects of formulations of truss topology optimization problems. The ground structure approach-based formulations of three types of truss topology optimization problems, namely the problems of minimum weight design for a given compliance, of minimum weight design with stress constraints and of minimum weight design with stress constraints and local buckling constraints are examined. The common difficulties with the formulations of the three problems are discussed. Since the continuity of the constraint or/and objective function is an important factor for the determination of the mathematical structure of optimization problems, the issue of the continuity of stress, displacement and compliance functions in terms of the cross-sectional areas at zero area is studied. It is shown that the bar stress function has discontinuity at zero crosssectional area, and the structural displacement and compliance are continuous functions of the cross-sectional area. Based on the discontinuity of the stress function we point out the features of the feasible domain and global optimum for optimization problems with stress and/or local buckling constraints, and conclude that they are mathematical programming with discontinuous constraint functions and that they are essentially discrete optimization problems. The difference between topology optimization with global constraints such as structural compliance and that with local constraints on stress or/and local buckling is notable and has important consequences for the solution approach.

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Cheng, G. Some aspects of truss topology optimization. Structural Optimization 10, 173–179 (1995). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF01742589

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  • Topology Optimization
  • Stress Function
  • Constraint Function
  • Discrete Optimization
  • Global Constraint