1718. Weight Estimation of Unconventional Structures by Structural Optimization


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H Miura, Shyu: 1718. Weight Estimation of Unconventional Structures by Structural Optimization. 1986.



Weight estimation techniques based on the statistical data obtained from past products are not always reliable especially when evaluating weight properties for structures of unconventional topology or for those using new materials. When the structural weight advantage is one of the key criteria used to evaluate the proposed concept, accurate and unbiased weight data are essential. For difficult and conflicting design requirements such as conditions imposed on small displacements or constraints on dynamic responses of light weight space structures, automated optimization was identified as a critically important design tool. Structural optimization techniques that began to be implemented in the commercially supported finite element programs in the last two years may be useful to provide a fair basis of comparison for many types of problems. The material distribution may be optimized for each of the design concepts for minimum weight, while satisfying all the design requirements, and hence best proposed concepts may he compared. Structural optimization capabilities obtained by integrating a finite element structural analysis program and a numerical optimization code are developed and applied to two problems of practical scale and complexity.


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