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Structural Engineering and Mechanics
  Volume 55, Number 6, September25 2015 , pages 1121-1137

Use of design optimization techniques in solving typical structural engineering related design optimization problems
Filip Fedorik, Jiří Kala, Antti Haapala and Mikko Malaska

    High powered computers and engineering computer systems allow designers to routinely simulate complex physical phenomena. The presented work deals with the analysis of two finite element method optimization techniques (First Order Method-FOM and Subproblem Approximation Method-SAM) implemented in the individual Design Optimization module in the Ansys software to analyze the behavior of real problems. A design optimization is a difficult mathematical process, intended to find the minimum or maximum of an objective function, which is mostly based on iterative procedure. Using optimization techniques in engineering designs requires detailed knowledge of the analyzed problem but also an ability to select the appropriate optimization method. The methods embedded in advanced computer software are based on different optimization techniques and their efficiency is significantly influenced by the specific character of a problem. The efficiency, robustness and accuracy of the methods are studied through strictly convex two-dimensional optimization problem, which is represented by volume minimization of two bars‟ plane frame structure subjected to maximal vertical displacement limit. Advantages and disadvantages of the methods are described and some practical tips provided
Key Words
    design optimization; First Order Method; Subproblem Approximation Method; feasible/infeasible design space; robustness; accuracy
Filip Fedorik and Mikko Malaska, Structural Engineering and Construction Technology Research Group, University of Oulu, P.O. Box 4200, FI-90014, Oulu, Finland
Jiří Kala, Institute of Structural Mechanics, Brno University of Technology, Veveří 331/95, 60200 Brno, Czech Republic
Antti Haapala, Wood Material Science, University of Eastern Finland, P.O. Box 111, FI-80101, Joensuu, Finland

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