Topology Optimisation for Steel Structural Design with Additive Manufacturing
The application of steel based Additive Manufacturing (AM) processes on the design of a steel node for a tensegrity structure has been explored with the use of topology optimisation as the form finding method. AM bears the potential of increasing efficiency by reducing processing steps, material use and labor intensity, and offers a feasible manufacturing solution for structural building elements with complex geometry and function. Based on the redesign of an existing steel node, a number of design iterations have been developed and benchmarked using topology optimisation method, followed by a further rationalized design process for AM production. A comparison has also been performed between the new and the conventional design and resulted in insights into the new opportunities and the design freedom created by AM on production of metallic elements for the building industry.
The author would like to express the gratitude to Luca Frattari and Michal Wanski of Altair for their support on providing the software OptiStruct during the research project.
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